The TD's best friend and worst enemy - SketchUp. SketchUp is an invaluable tool when designing a complicated set. It can be used throughout the design process to visualise the set from different seats, ans try out different ideas and run them past the set designer and director. Once designed you can automatically make a cut-list, get the cost of your design and use it as a reference when building. SketchUp has now been depreciated, but the install files are still available on the CUADC public drive. Follow the instructions below to get started. Some other useful files are also available on the Cambridge Theatre Technical Collective Resource.
Installation and setup
Go to the CUADC public drive and download the sketchup installer files. For a windows computer use the .msi file, and for a mac use the .dmg file. Once installed, use the "simple template - meters". Go to "Window" -> "Extension manager", and click "Install Extension". Use this to install the two libraries, "ADC sketchup", which adds a model of the adc that you can place into the world, as well as quickly place metrodeck, treads and other components, and "Builder", which can be used to create cutlists and make price estimates. To simplify SketchUp, got to "Window" -> "Default tray" amd select both "Layers" and "Scenes". The "Components" and "Materials" views may also be useful, but you can probably unselect the rest. In layers, you can hide different parts of the ADC.
Tips and tricks
- It is recommended that you create a new layer for each part of your set, especially if it flies/trucks in and out, as you can toggle visibility separately.
- You can place ready-made components such as metrodeck, treads, handrail, Stripwood (usually CLS) and Sheetwood (usually ply)
- These can be edited by right-clicking on the object, "Dynamic components" and selecting "Component options"