Home Design Software
I have found the greatest set of tutorials on Google Sketchup that I want to share
with anyone who wants to draw a floorplan, design a room, or even plan an outdoor space. I have a Mac and the selection of design software is limited plus it is pricey. I had bought Chief Architect's Home Designer for Windows a couple of years ago, and liked it, but it isn't available for Mac. I seriously thought about Punch software but at $150 I just couldn't decide if it was that good. I had downloaded Google Sketchup, which is free, months ago but it sure is intimidating when you are starting out.
My son found this website for me and it does exactly what I needed: explains how to draw floorplans and 3-D models of houses. So many of the tutorials I had found for Sketchup were not specific to home design or they were too simplistic. The site is called Harwood Podcasts and it is a network of various topics. The only one I've explored is called Sketchup, a 3-D Toolbox by Cameron Harris.
I watched episode #25 first because it is called Modeling a Floor Plan and I was hooked. There are over 50 episodes which range from the very simplest beginning guide for the Sketchup opening screen to complex windows, doors, cabinets, even outdoor landscaping and hardscaping.
The young man who does the videos is Cameron Harris and I think he started these when he was 17 - and he is quite a remarkable young man! He is articulate, knowledgeable and has a talent for teaching. He never speeds through an explanation nor does he dumb it down. There are so many features to Sketchup and he patiently covers one per video. (Take notes!)
I've drawn my floorplan to scale on vellum paper and need to make changes. The changes are so extensive I will have to start from scratch. I thought I had bought the right pencils for vellum but the smeary erasures and the difficulty of getting exact measurements bugs me. I'm so excited to try my hand at Sketchup. I've watched quite a few of the episodes about navigation and the tools of Sketchup so I am anxious to get started!
If you want to do your floorplans and designs on your computer, check out a few of these tutorials. They are available on YouTube, the Harwood Podcast website and you can download via iTunes. Disclaimer: I have no connection to the website or Cameron - well, other than being a big fan!
Here is a link that might be useful: Sketchup: A 3-D Toolbox