How to lighten geo-located aerial imagery in 2016 for tracing

I am following Brightman’s ‘Sketchup Workflow for Architecture’ but just upgraded to SU 2016. I was following chapter 15 to trace aerial imagery and make a 2-d site plan (I am tracing the road), but the steps to desaturate the aerial imagery (use material browser edit tab) in order to see new linework are not how it’s done anymore?? Is there a new way to lighten the image? The book is 2013, so I would imagine the steps may have changed slightly, but not that much.

I don’t know OS X or workflow, but you should be able to change the opacity for that landscape texture?

Another way would be to change the edge color in the style settings (to red e.g.) to get a greater contrast between map and lines…

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I think I figured it out- the image is within a group, so I need to edit group, then within the group, select entity info, then the opacity of ‘surface’ (for the 3-d terrain image) or the ‘face’ (of the 2-d snapshot image) can be adjusted.

You could just edit the opacity of the material in the Materials window without opening the group for editing. Fewer steps to accomplish the same thing.

You could simply lay a rectangle directly on the image, then paint the rectangle translucent white or gray. Trace on the gray rectangle.


I tried to edit material without going into group, but that didn’t work. There was no effect when I modified the opacity. At the time, I didn’t realize it was a group.

I wouldn’t have suggested it if it didn’t work. Try again.

The group is in fact locked and still the material can be edited without unlocking or editing the group. This shows it on the PC but the same applies on the Mac.

You could also just make the image lighter without changing the opacity.