How to degrade a model's image



I need some help from the SketchUp Gods…

I am trying to make an image of my model replicate an image from Google Earth’s satellite imagery. I have attempted pixelating a PNG of the model and then blurring it a little. It is closer to the true image, but color matching and making the pixelization match is proving too much. I would assume that photo matching is the key, but doing it on a three dimensional model using a two dimensional image shot from above, this is where I am lost.

I will attempt to attach an image that describes what I am looking for. The image is two southwest airlines 737s on a runway, one is obviously the model and the other is organic to the image. I am trying to make the model look as if it too is organic to the image, while still being able to use its three dimensional capabilities.

Help me, SketchUp Gods. You’re my only hope…
Help me, SketchUp Gods. You’re my only hope…
Help me, SketchUp Gods. You’re my only hope…



Move the plane so that it sits on top of the existing one, then r-click it and “project photo”. Then move it back.

(I’m assuming that the image is imported as a “matched photo”)


that is just a ground grab from GE


Try turning off edges (Window > Styles > Edit > Edge Settings > uncheck Edges).



I tried turning off edges and profiles, but it still comes out too crisp


What does that mean?

Why not import a copy (an image) of the first plane and set it on the runway?



And then of course the shadow adds to the difficulty. I can make the “ground” hidden and that will let me make a .png of just the plane and shadow, but the shadow then takes on the color of the background


I need to be able to take the look of the organic plane and make the model have the same appearance. that way I can make that same plane appear at different look angles all over


I’m saying take a screen shot of the first plane, shadows and all, bring it into a bitmap editor, give it a transparent background, and then re-import the resulting image. It should look just like its daddy.


I find that unintelligible.


If you took the original plane and made it face the opposite direction (to the right) it would look odd since the satellite image was not taken directly above the plane, but at a slight incline. Because of this I can’t use a copy of the 2D image, I need a 3D image that wont look odd when I turn it around. What I am trying to do is make the 3D model look as close as possible to what the plane looks like on the satellite image


It sounds like you’re describing a post-processing operation in a bitmap editor.

“Degrading an image” is certainly not something one would ordinarily associate with or expect from a 3D modeling program, while it’s a fairly elementary PhotoShop session.



I think that your real problem is that the original image is far lower quality than what is coming out of SketchUp. You may try turning off lines and profiles zooming way out (so that the plane is only about 100 pixels across), then out putting a 2D image. Then scales that up and lay it on top of the GE image.


You would be better hiring a helicopter to fly over the airport and take sharp photos, then take some images of each of the planes different colours and apply them to the correct surfaces. Then you need to model each element like the aerofoils, the joins in each panel and rivits used to hold it together. Then you need to export it to a render package and adjust the lighting settings to match the photos you took in step 1…

Actually just buy another aircraft, place it on the runway and use a drone to capture images as you zoom around it.

There are some packages that will allow real-time rendered images within SU, but I recommend you flip your thinking and model the existing runway/hanger/plane so that the existing looks like the new rather than making the new look like the existing.


I completely agree. This is not at all what sketchup is for, and I am playing around with post processing to get it right. The issue I am having is making the model have the exact same coloring as the original plane before I export it. Original pixels and all. Unfortunately, match photo is kicking my ■■■■ and I am unable to get the matching to work. Is there a trick, besides what I can find in basic youtube video?


add two planes, i.e. cover the original plane with a copy of the SU one…

then they match…


Agreed, they would… Sadly it can’t be that easy though. To correctly fill the requirement, I have to make a model very closely imitate what the same object looks like in satellite imagery. The plane is just an easy example.


You also need to work on your materials. The colors you’ve applied to the 3D model are way too saturated compared to the one in the photo. You also need to add the highlights and reflections.


I just grabbed the 737 from the warehouse as an example


It doesn’t matter where it came from. Part of getting the model to match the image is going to involve adjusting the materials on the plane.