New SketchUp 2023 Overlay Feature

Hey everyone! We are pleased to announce that we recently launched SketchUp 2023. One of the new features we’ve made for extension developers to make use of is called “Overlays”.

With this feature, extensions can draw to the screen even when the extension is not active, opening an entirely new paradigm for displaying information with your SketchUp model. This is similar to how an architect will take their drawings, lay some trace paper over the top, and then draw annotations and information over their design, adding layers of helpful information.

To see Overlays in action, check out some of the extensions that have incorporated this functionality.

Composition Guides is an extension that adds visual guides to the screen for things like 16:9 ratio, 1:1 ratio, rule of thirds and many more. These guides can be very helpful for setting up more dynamic camera views for your image exports.

Solid Inspector has been around for some time and can be a lifesaver for helping to create solid models. It now makes use of Overlays to keep the problem areas in the model highlighted even while you are using native SketchUp tools like the Line tool. You can see where all the holes in your model are while you’re cleaning them up, without having to continuously reactivate the Solid Inspector tool. This small workflow change enabled by Overlays is a real time saver!

These are just a few of the extensions that are working to incorporate Overlay capability. We are interested to know what you think: Which extensions do you think could benefit from Overlays? Or, what would you like to see in a new extension (or SketchUp feature) using persistent Overlay display. Let us know in this thread!



Thanks for this feature !

I’ve mentioned previously in the forum about my custom select/hover tool that displays the tag name close to the cursor as you hover over tagged objects.

It also highlights bounding boxes and geometry – it’s a visual aid that I find useful.

So it’s great that I can leave the buggy PickHelper behind and use an overlay to replicate my extension with the native select tool.

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