Geotiff Import with Georeference from Drone Deploy scan

Hello community,

I am using drone deploy to survey and generate GeoTiff images of tentative music festival event sites.

Problem: Importing GeoTIFF into SketchUp Pro as a Tiff and having to manually scale the image.

Ideal Solution: Automated import of GeoTiff into SketchUp Pro where georeference within metadata is read and acted on to place & scale image correctly. Ideally would be able to export SketchUp as a GeoTiff so I can upload into Mapbox… essentially I wish there was a plugin that specialized in handling dronescans and georeferenced data… would happily pay for this.

I’ve explored all plugins… the only way to get high-resolution GeoTiff into SketchUp is to import as a texture and manually scale. Time-consuming and frustrating.

Basically you want to automate the process of creating a quadrilateral with geo-coordinates as corners and stretching a texture image onto it.

It is good that coordinates can be stored as metadata in an image file. Geotiff doesn’t seem to use the more common EXIF tags, but is an older standard.

For SketchUp, there are two limitations for making this useful:

  • maximum texture size: aerial imagery probably tends to use larger image sizes than textures in 3D graphics
  • projection: Textures use a perspective projection, but GeoTiff can specify a plethora of non-linear projections that cannot be accurately represented (without doing image processing first). Also, GeoTiff supports many coordinate systems, whereas SketchUp’s API supports some.

A plugin would need to do the following:

  • Read out metadata e.g. using ExifTool. It seems the metadata does not specify coordinates of image corners but of the center and projection parameters. So you need a geographic math library to calculate the geo-coordinates of the image corners.
  • Then use SketchUp’s API to convert geo-coordinates to model coordinates and draw a quadrilateral face.
  • Then create a texture from the image file and map UV coordinates on the quadrilateral.

add a geotiff file for examination…


1 Like

Google Earth has support for importing GeoTiff. Imported files are converted to GoogleEarth’s internal representation (KML ground overlay). So you could then save the ground overlay as KML and import it using KML Tools (if they still work).

Thank you Aerillus,

I will try to use the Google Earth workflow method you mentioned and report back.