Getting Started & Import Your Design: Lumion 9 – 3D Render Tutorial

November 9, 2019 0 By Peter Engel

Welcome to the first video tutorial of Lumion version 9. In this tutorial we will go through the basics of the user interface and we’ll show you how to import your own design into Lumion. When you first run Lumion, this is the screen that you should see. At the top there is a button to allow you to change the language. Below that, there is a section with three tabs. The first one you use to start a new project with one of the templates. The second one shows you some examples. The third one is to load a scene that you previously created. Below, there’s a section, “News and Learning,” with three buttons that will bring you to different pages of the Lumion website. At the bottom, there’s the results of the benchmark that was run when you first installed Lumion. Clicking on it will bring you more detailed results. If each of these four bars shows at least one green line, your hardware is suitable to run Lumion. If not, you need to upgrade some parts of your hardware. To start a new project, use one of these preset templates, for example, Plain. It shows you a large green field on which you can place your own object and some decorating objects from the Lumion library. To get your own design into Lumion, there are several ways. One of them is the Import button. Clicking on it will bring up a dialog box. And at the bottom right, you can see the file formats that are supported by Lumion. Most CAD software packages support at least one of these file formats as an export option. SketchUp files are supported natively. For now, you can ignore the options in the import dialog box and click on OK. After a couple of seconds, the object will appear in the scene and it’s connected to the mouse cursor. So you can move around the scene and as soon as you click, the object is placed. But another copy of the object is still connected to the mouse. This allows you to place multiple copies quickly, one after the other. In the case of a unique house, this is usually not applicable, but for example smaller objects like decorating objects, cars, trees, light poles, this can be very convenient. To get rid of this, go to the Select button. Now you can click on each of these copies and either move them around or, for example, delete them. To delete an object, go to the Delete button. And then you can click on the little red dot that’s connected to the house or the object that you selected. Now how do we move around the user interface? This is usually done with a combination of the keyboard and the mouse. To show how that’s done, I will temporarily show an overlay of a small portion of the keyboard. To look in different directions, you press the right mouse button and shift the mouse. To move around, you use the left part of your keyboard. The Q Key will move you up, the W key will move you forward, the E key will move you down, the A key left, S backwards, D key right. So with the combination of these keys and the mouse, you can move all over your scene in a very convenient way. To orbit around your object, you can press the O key on the keyboard. Press the right mouse button again and shift the mouse, so the viewpoint will now orbit around the center of the screen, indicated with the two white brackets. The scroll Wheel will allow you to move backwards and forwards. Another way to get your model into Lumion is using LiveSync. This is a plug-in in some of the most popular CAD packages that allows you to synchronize your object from your CAD software to Lumion in a very convenient way. I will demonstrate this using SketchUp. To use LiveSync, it’s most convenient to have two monitors connected to your PC. The left one, for example, is your CAD software, the right one with Lumion. For the sake of this tutorial, I’ll just use one monitor and split the screen in 2. To use LiveSync, you first need to install the plugin for SketchUp. You will find this in the Extension Warehouse. Search for Lumion and click on Lumion LiveSync for SketchUp plugin. Now in my case it was already installed, so there’s only an uninstall option available. If you haven’t installed it yet, this should show the Install button. Once you’ve installed it, it’s available either from here, from the extensions, or go to View Toolbars and click on Lumion LiveSync. You can dock it, for example, on the side, so it’s always available. Clicking on this Start LiveSync button will bring up your model into Lumion. A very convenient way of working is to click the Start Camera button. It synchronizes the camera between SketchUp and Lumion. For example, orbiting in SketchUp and orbit view will follow in Lumion. Scrolling out will do the same. The convenience of LiveSync is that when you make changes to your model or hide certain parts, they will be changed or hidden also automatically in Lumion. For example, we switch off the roof and the roof will also be hidden in Lumion. Or you move around or change a particular part of the geometry, for example this little chimney, and the changes will be synchronized to Lumion. In Lumion you can select an object by clicking on it and unselecting by pressing the control key and clicking anywhere else next to the object. The right-hand side of the user interface has a section showing the keys of the keyboard that are available for special functions. Hover the mouse over it and the function will be displayed. At the bottom right, there are several buttons that bring up different sections of Lumion. Right now we are in Build Mode, but there are other buttons to bring in Photo Mode, Movie Mode, 360 Panorama Mode. They bring up a different user interface which will be described in subsequent
tutorials. The button Files will allow you to save your project. You can give it a title or just a file name. This button will bring up some sections to speed up the user interface for very large projects, for example. And the question mark, the Help button at the bottom right will bring up some details describing the different parts of the user interface. The bottom left of the user interface has some tabs that will bring up different portions of the GUI. Right now we’ve been working in the Object’s tab, but there’s also a Materials tab, a Landscape tab, and the Weather tab. We will describe these in subsequent video tutorials. This is the end of tutorial number 1. In the next tutorial, we’ll go through more details of the Objects section.