What version to work with my architect?

I am planning an extension to my house.

My architect is a fully paid up user of Sketchup Pro. During the design phase I want to have a “dialog” with him about design options. Rather than having the architect send me PDF drawings of the plans, and me hand marking them up, and returning them to him by scanner, I would like him to be able to send me the Sketchup files directly so I can mark up my comments directly and return them to him in the same format.

Question: do I need to have Sketchup Pro for this, or can I use the free version?

SketchUp Make will open files created in SketchUp Pro. You need to check to make sure what SketchUp version he’s using and that he’s on board with sending you SKP files. If he’s using an older version, you’ll have to back save the files so he can open them.

I usually find it easier to have my clients comment on pdf drawings or on jpg screenshots of the model, even if they are making the screenshots themselves.

A sketchup model requires a delicate and specific setup between layers, groups, components, styles and scenes for it to work at a professional level. This requires knowing what you’re doing when you’re working on the model. That’s why I don’t like sharing sketchup models for my clients to work on as they are invariably ruined or breaking my workflow.

Of course we could share the model within some rules of engagement, but our clients usually don’t bother.

It’s also very difficult to have effective 3D notes in a model even if the working is done in another model as navigating to the notes and remembering all of them would require a specific knowledge on how to do that from my clients.

Overall I admire your willingness to do it and if I would have a client like you I’d like to explore ways of making that work.

Good luck!

1 Like

Hi JQL I appreciate your candidness about “idiot” clients; but would like to point out that in this case I do actually have a university degree in engineering…

Hi DaveR thanks for the helpful advice :slight_smile:

Hi Andrew, I find it funny your calling them idiots but I don’t feel that at all. I find their questioning of my projects key for a successful development and a fundamental part on my own process.

I just haven’t had a client with whom it would be easy to share my model with, as probably I haven’t worked with engineers as clients. I just think the experience would probably teach me a lot too.

I’ve never changed a CAD file with clients but the idea of having a client wanting to share a 3D model is interesting as it raises many questions.