Importing SU stuff into

Occasionally I find myself having to import 2d drawings I made in SU into a pdf. My answer is to convert the pdf to a jpeg, and open it with paint, or, so I can clean up the plan, erase stuff, or insert SU drawings. If I try to open the jpeg in SU it has lost lots of detail ( 24 x 36) and it is difficult to do because SU sometimes wants to put a border around the object. Nor does it have the option to work with the pixels of the jpeg.

I also don’t want to redraw the whole plan into SU, though that may be a good option.

I know SU is perhaps not the best choice for 2D drawings, but it is the program I know how to use, and don’t really want an extended learning curve on a different program.

Any pointers about how to do this that you have found?


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To get a plan from SketchUp to PDF I would send it to LayOut and annotate it there, and export directly to PDF.
As to raster image formats, with the kind of views that SketchUp creates, PNG is a better export format than JPG/JPEG. The latter is designed for photographs, and its compression algorithm creates ugly artifacts and blur when processing images with areas of uniform colour and lines.
Why in all world would you want to import SketchUp-created raster images back into SketchUp? Can’t you edit the original SketchUp “drawing” instead?

In this case, we are working off an old set of paper plans. I had them scanned into PDF, and want to alter them to suit the project, which is the addition of an elevator, reworking and covering the atrium with skylights and a roof, and converting the maids room into an exercise room. It hardly seem worth tracing the whole house, some 5 or 6 sheets, rather simply update the areas the changes are being made. Another option, paying for CAD as-builts, was ditched due to the $5k price tag.

Since I can’t edit the pdfs, I converted them to JPEGs.

I didn’t know png. files are better than JPEG, thanks.

I have a like / hate relationship with layout. Maybe I need a super computer because it tends to slow down as I add in pages, especially photographs. If I get a reference wrong it goes to hell, and there are loads of lines to the top left corner.

I am not sure how you got this idea: “Why in all world would you want to import SketchUp-created raster images back into SketchUp?” Perhaps I wasn’t clear. Sorry G

OK - I didn’t get that it was all about scanned old plans. Yes, PNG is definitely better than JPG for those.

This is because SketchUp treats raster images mainly as material textures, and it downsamples all imported images to fit in a 1024 x 1024 pixel rectangle (2048 or 4096 if you have the “use maximum texture size” box ticked in Preferenced>OpenGL). This can be circumvented with TIGs (if I remember right) Large Image Splitter extension. LayOut doesn’t have this limitation.

So many points to hit on here. Longtime PC user, first time on this thread (lol). I can really help you out, I have quite a bit of experience with working with as-builts.
On the topic of working with MS Paint to just erase portions of your image and annotating, this is the way to go in your case unless you want to use an advanced image editor to make your annotations look prettier! I always default to MS Paint standards whenever possible (I have actually been quite successful at making symbols and drawing a concept plan with it).
This leads to the next important point: Layout is THE BEST (newfound) program for making printables. I’ve used AutoCAD to make the most perfect title blocks, etc. and I still am in love, it’s just gonna take me a while to go back from this love affair I’m having with Layout now. The only problem I have with Layout is the grid not snapping PERFECTLY everytime when I create a new title block
BUT I CAN DEAL, easily. Layout is the best. All of “la perfection” was intended to be contained in the SKP. I agree that anntotating with Layout is a worthy option (for more convenient use of symbols). Avoid JPEG if the image is intended to be CAD-use worthy or not intended to “last in perpetuity” as the image quality “degrades everytime you view it” though I would verify that.
On the topic of the retracing, it would depend on what your building department requires for a permit and based on what you mentioned, a good reason to go back to AutoCAD; like concrete and rebar you can never add enough dimensions to your plans like you can never add enough rebar to concrete!
Finally, I would save ever Layout sheet as its own file, they’re only about a half “MEG” to a few “MEGS” at most!

I use both ms paint and to modify images. For instance - I took a paper plan and had it scanned, opened the PDF of a plan, with adobe acrobat pro9, saved it as a PNG. In MS paint I cropped the image and saved it. Then I opened that in and cleaned up the image with the clone tool etc. to remove portions I didn’t want. I imported that in to SU, scaled it, and drew the (n) roof and wall (it’s a section). I imported the image into LO, and labeled it, saved it as a PDF, combined it with 16 other sheets in Adobe pro9 and emailed it out.

Later on I had to edit it, because the roof pitch changed, and the skylights had to be deleted.
I opened it in to remove stuff, and reimported it back to SU, and redrew the revised wall and roof. Then sent it back to LO. Edited a couple pages of the 17 page pdf, then deleted out some pages, and recombined the new sheets with adobe acrobat pro9, and sent it out.

It worked well, though I wish that had the tape measure tool to align stuff. No one program does it all, so I used 5 if you count LO and SU as 2. I tried to do some of it with photoshop ps6 to no avail. works better for my uses.


In my previous reply, I wrote “keep it ‘FUNNER’!” but the reply after that where I promoted my art was deleted. No matter and I meant to use the proper spelling, “keep it fun” but I digress. I’ve used Adobe Acrobat Pro but I found the subscription too expensive. If I had an architecture firm, I would find it indispensable because they use so many sheets. CutePDF is a great tool for simple insertions/DELETIONS of PDF sheets and Adobe PDF tools online as well.
When I started out, I tried to get as big a breadth of tools as possible and did quite well but now I’m finding myself retooling, like you, so that the workflow is faster rather than smarter (for repeatability); this has helped me incredibly in innovating as of late. So my recommendation is to keep whippin’ the blueballpoint as it were and not get too into the weeds as far as the super specialized/technical aspects of the software YET. Perhaps someday when these workflows are “set in stone” it’ll be possible to compare notes on what is more efficient and or fun but for now, I’m just focusing on speed, that is, getting stuff onto paper! Godspeed!

Adobe pro 9 and photoshop cs6 are the last standalone versions - no subscriptions. Had I guessed the dollar would become worthless, I would have upgraded to su 2020, idiot me.

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