Home Animation Using Sketchup, Medeek BIM, and Lumion

Hi All,

I thought I’d share a recent project I completed for a client. I was tasked with producing an animation of the steps of a house being constructed, to show new home buyers. I received permission from the client to share it with the SketchUP community, just as long as I put a watermark over the video.

I used the fantastic Medeek suite of plugins by Nathanial Wilkerson (@medeek) for all of the modeling in SketchUP and rendered the animation using Lumion. I’ve also posted this to the Lumion forums with some more background information on the Lumion process here.

After using the Medeek plugins to build the entire model, I created scenes with layers turned on and off to setup the different stages of the animation. This also allowed me to export stills of each of the stages to send a storyboard to the client for approval, before proceeding with the importing and setup in Lumion.

Once the geometry and steps were approved by the client, I had to create over 200 groups to export them as 200 individual files to keyframe their appearance in Lumion.

Here is a screenshot of how detailed the model was, and here’s the video.

Let me know your thoughts and if you have any questions about the process!


All I can say is I am very impressed, not only with the model but the rendering and animations. My favorite view is the interior showing some of the wall framing with what looks to be the garage.

I only wish the plugins were further along than they are because I know you probably invested quite a bit of time with manual edits to not only the roof framing but the walls to complete this model.

Final product looks really impressive :+1:t2: The amount of work this probably took seems rather daunting though. I’d speed the animation up a good bit, I’d argue nobody’s going to sit 3.5min through the whole thing, you could easily cut that in half - but that’s just personal opinion.

Thanks for your kind words Nathaniel, I appreciate it!

It’s true, I did need to spend some time to make adjustments (mainly to the roof), but thankfully your YouTube tutorials were explanatory enough that it made the joining / splitting of roof elements go much quicker. But, I am looking forward to seeing the plugins developed further!

I have a new job coming up that will require a complex rafter roof, and I know that function is still under development and won’t yet show all of the rafters. I will just model the roof primitives and use the same joining / splitting tools to achieve the same results.

It’s true. Fortunately the client has a video editor that he is using to add his voice over, insert diagrams, etc. He mentioned he would have him speed up some of the parts, so I didn’t need to spend much time correcting the lengths.

Impressive work. What platform (Mac or Win) did you use for the project? The framing is extensive for this model. Did you experience any issues with the Wall extension?

Thanks for sharing …

I’m using Windows 10.
No issues with the wall extension really, some small weird connection mishaps that were easy to fix by redoing the walls. I think this was happening simply because I wasn’t going in the right direction when drawing the walls (interior / exterior direction), if that makes sense.

In one of Nathan’s YT videos, when creating exterior walls, he moves in a counter clockwise direction. I’m currently having extreme difficulty in connecting interior to external walls. I am using shed partitions, which may be the root of the problem. Unable to create proper T-Corners at these junctions. Makes me wonder how a carpenter would actually build these junctions…

And if I recall correctly, Lumion in Windows only, yes?

That’s correct, yes. Doesn’t seem like they are interested in developing it for Mac anytime soon.
Twinmotion I believe is available for Mac

Wow-- so creative! How is the actual animation work done? I don’t understand, can you explode and rework inside Lumion?

All of the individual items you see drop into the frame needed to be exported from Sketchup as their own groups (about 200). There is an animation tool within Lumion called “Animated Phasing” where you can select a bunch of objects, define a timeline, and stagger their appearance into the scene. Lumion is a fantastic rendering and animation tool, and by far the simplest to use. And if you have a decent graphics card, it’s incredibly fast


:wink: … may have to buy me some Lumion…

Do you think I could run it?

I have an MSI GS66 Steath 10SF

-Operating System-
Windows 10 Home 64-bit

Intel Processor @ 2.60GHz


DELL U3014 (2560x1600@60Hz)
Intel UHD Graphics (MSI)
4095MB NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 with Max-Q Design (MSI)

Why don’t you trial and find out?
Looks ok!

Check out Lumion’s minimum requirements: System Requirements in Lumion 11 | 3D Rendering Hardware