Step 7. Finetuning

The trick to getting really realistic renders from SketchUp + Indigo is to spend time tweaking your materials until they look just right. In this example we used models from the Google Warehouse that are relatively low in polygon count, so don't look ultra realistic, but by carefully editing the materials used on the models you can make the scene look better and better.

One of the advantages of Indigo is that if you set a 100 Watt lightbulb in a lamp, you can see how the light will fall off around the room, useful for doing lighting analysis – will you need more light fittings in the corner of the room?

To increase the realism of this scene, you could:

  • Increase the Mesh Subdivision of the carpet to 10. This will make the carpet seem finer grained and more "fluffy".
  • Add a bump map to the floor material, of height 0.1 centimetres, to simulate the grain of the wood.
  • Reduce the "exponent" of the chrome material to make the floor lamp less reflective.

As you can see there are many options that you can tweak to get the best possible results out of Indigo.

Creating ultra realistic scenes that look like something from the real world is usually achieved by recreating all of the models in the scene with accurate geometry, and then spending 30-40% of your time modifying materials in the scene to ensure that they are as realistic as you would like them to be.

We hope you have enjoyed this brief introduction to SkIndigo.