My “Little Vacation House” - Modeling and Rendering


Hello Forum!

After testing SketchUp Make 2017, I purchased SketchUp Pro just one year ago. This is what I designed/drafted/rendered directly after, in my Winter Vacation. Just for testing SketchUp and Lumion.

I am an architectural Draftsman/3d-Modeler, working all day with Allplan (2d/3d-Cad), but to be versatile as a Draftsman, I purchased Cinema4d a few years ago, did a lot of stuff with it, but never was satisfied with the Renderspeed – I didn´t have a Renderfarm. Being also a Gamer with PC and seeing what a good graphic card can do in real time, I searched for a GPU-Rendering-Program. So I discovered Lumion, viewed a lot of awesome videos of Mike Brigthman and then I also discovered SketchUp. And after seeing Mike Sonders jawdropping Videos, I simply had to purchase SketchUp (and Lumion). I didn´t thought that SketchUp is that powerful and fun to draft with. I really love it. I can´t use/don´t need SketchUp at work, but when I come home guess what I like to do? Starting up SketchUp. :grinning:

I also did an Animation of this Vaction House, Link to Youtube:

Drafted with SketchUp Pro 2018 (on Macbook, connected to 2 x 4k-Screens, with 3d-Mouse), rendered with Lumion 8 Pro (on PC with GTX 1080), Video-Editing with Final Cut Pro X (on Mac).
btw: the Renderingspeed with Lumion is awesome: Still in 1920x1080 px per Rendering: 5 sec.!

Greetings, Peter


Excellent renders, enjoy the simplicity of the design.


Petty fab!


Very impressive. How do you find Lumion for interiors i.e kitchens or bathrooms? Overkill for kitchens alone?


Thanks a lot People!

I think Lumion is great, although if you only do interiors. Workflow SketchUp to Lumion is fine and fast. Working with Lumion is easy. There is even a Live-sync, which means that you have both Programs, SketchUp and Lumion, displayed on two monitors simultaneously and if you change your SketchUp Model, it does change the Lumion Model in real time. But You do need a good graphics card for Lumion. Rendertimes are very fast: 5 to 6 sec. for one Render.
I don´t think it would be “overkill”.

There are some other similar programs out there, which are GPU-Renderers: Twinmotion (available also for Mac) and Enscape.


Thanks Peter.
I’m a bit like you, CAD to me (especially S U) is like xbox to my son… I enjoy it as a hobby as well as professionaly (kitchen presentations). I keep going round in circles with Ensape or Lumion, obviously big difference in price but maybe should treat myself to Lumion. Does it come with free/cheap updates & latest versions once purchased? Thanks for your help.


That is a really impressive video, what with the day to night sequence, the motion of the water, the out of focus foreground, and the crumpled bed linen (to name just a few stand-outs). You can tell what the broad on the li-lo has been doing the night before. Is she a Trimble employee?

Out of interest, how long did it take you from having a SU model to creating the rendering and video?


a year ago, I didn’t knew that Lumion is not the only software for fast GPU-Rendering. I installed the Lumion-Demo, found out it is awesome and purchased it. I was so happy about the fact, that I can do finally Animations only with a good Gamer-PC.
Therefore I am sorry that I can’t help with your decision whether Lumion or Enscape, because I did not work with Enscape at all. Lumion: As I know by now, each year they gonna release a new Version of Lumion. An upgrade from the latest (pro-)version costs € 1000,-. But I for myself did not upgrade by now.

Another aspect is VR. I guess I’m going into this next year. The question for me then will be: Is Lumion supporting VR (HTC Vive, Occulus Rift, etc.)?

There is a channel on YT „The Rendering Essentials“. They did some videos on both programs. This may help you. And also on Vray, which could be also interesting for you.

I visited your website! Great Designs!


Thanks a lot!
Sadly I can’t tell how long the whole process did take, because it was the first thing I did with SketchUp, Lumion and Final Cut (Video-Editing). I guess it took my whole 2-week-wintervacation, sometimes day and night straight :smile:.
But I did not model things like the crumpled bed linen. I only designed/modeled/textured the whole building, the windows & doors and the kitchen furniture. All other things are from the SketchUp Warehouse and Lumion. The Water is also a preset in Lumion. You can adjust the Motion and colour by yourself.

Cool thing about the workflow from SketchUp to Lumion is: If you are setting Materials like Water or Glass in SketchUp, Lumion notices that and puts in accordingly materials.

On my channel is another Animation (Exterior) of a Renovation Building.
The whole process - from importing the finished Model (modeled by me with Allplan) into Lumion, replacing Textures, setting plants and lighting, planing a little storyboard, setting the camera tracks, doing test renderings in lower resolution, choosing the music and editing/putting together the clips - till I uploaded the Video on YT, took me approximately 16 hours. Without the rendertime itself - this was done at night while I was away from keyboard.
I´m not 100% satisfied with the Result. There are a lot of things, which could be modeled with more detail. But it had to be done in a short time.

What’s your point about the woman on the Lilo? :smile:


Thanks Peter, that’s all really helpful.
The version updates are a bit pricey but not something you have to do every year.
I will check out your YouTube videos, I’m looking forward to seeing more of your work… stunning!


You’re welcome!
One more thing I want to say - just my opinion:
I only do stuff with Lumion rather than with Cinema4d, because I wanted to do whole Animations (tracking shots). With a program like Cinema4d you can achieve high quality-renderings but you will need a lot of Rendertime. With Lumion the quality isn’t that good - not absolutely photorealistic, but a Render takes only a few seconds.
Cinema4d however is also a very powerful program when it comes to animate things inside the model. Open doors, windows, etc can be easily done. Doing that in Lumion is difficult.

So it depends on your requirement: Do you want photorealistic Stills oder whole Animations rendered in no time? If you don’t need Animations, but very good photorealistic Stills, I guess Vray could be the way to go. Vray is not that expensive and works as an extension inside of SketchUp.

I want to check out Vray in SketchUp in the future myself, because I like the idea to have a powerful photorealistic renderer directly inside the cad-program a lot. Just for doing some stills.


I have pondered over that in detail myself. The ability to present clients with realistic walkthroughs is what I’m generally after. So will be looking further into Lumion.
The bike in your YT vid is incredible… bet you went through a few tape measures on that one…


The bike is not modeled by me. But by Peter C. He is active in the german SketchUp-Forum ( He is doing some awesome stuff. He modeled the bike incredible detailed. Link to the model in the warehouse, it´s well worth seeing:


Thanks again Peter.


Beautiful work @Peter_B
Interesting to see mid-century architecture still appeals to many.

Last month this 1947 image popped up in a New York Times photo essay.
The NYT is digitizing some six million photo prints in their archives, dating back more than 100 years,
California: State of Change — The New York Times


Thanks a lot Geo. And thanks for posting the link!


Thanks Geo! The link was an interesting read. Richard Neutra’s houses were often used as examples in my architecture school. What also caught my eye was the image of architect Paul Revere Williams. I wonder if there are other African Americans that got as far in the profession as early.