This section of the Getting Started Guide covers the concepts found within the Style Builder product and in the user community. This section was written for users who are new Style Builder.What are Styles?
A style is a predefined collection of display settings that can be applied to a model and the drawing area. Styles give a model and the drawing area a specific look-and-feel. For example, a style can consist of the blue sky color, brown ground color, gray default front face color, and purple default back face color.
One of the building blocks of a style is the edge style or the appearance of edges that will be applied to your model. One specific type of edge style is the sketchy edge which is an edge that appears to be hand drawn.
The following image shows a SketchUp model with standard vector edges.
The following image shows a SketchUp model with sketchy edges.
SketchUp 7 comes with several pre-created sketchy edge styles. To view the library of pre-created sketchy edge styles:
- Select the Styles item from the Window menu. The Styles Browser is displayed
- Click on the Select tab.
- Select the Sketchy Edges item from the drop-down list. All of the pre-created sketchy edges styles are displayed.
- Select a sketchy edge style to change the edge-type used in your model. Remember, sketchy edges are only part of a style. Therefore, other items, such as the background color might change depending on which style you choose.
You can create your own sketchy edge and apply it, as part of a style, to your models in SketchUp. This customization feature allows you to create models that appear as though you drew them by hand.
How are Sketchy Edge Styles Constructed?
A sketchy edge style is composed of multiple strokes of some length and width. Each stroke is a grayscale image that is painted on top of SketchUp's vector edges to give the edges a hand-drawn appearance. Two or more strokes of the same length are referred to as a stroke set or just a set. For example, your style might contain a stroke set of 3 strokes that are 32 pixels in length, a stroke set containing 3 strokes that are 64 pixels in length, and a stroke set containing 3 strokes that are 128 pixels in length.
The following image shows a sketchy edge style with 5 stroke sets (32, 64, 128, 256, and 512 pixels in length). Each stroke set has 3 strokes.
The slight variation of strokes in each set allows for a hand-drawn look-and-feel for your models.How are Sketchy Edges Applied to a Model?
The following image shows three checkered strokes of varying lengths: 32 pixels (labeled with an A), 64 pixels (labeled with a B) and 128 pixels (labeled with a C).
SketchUp matches the appropriate stroke length with each edge in a model when applying strokes. Longer stroke lengths, such as stroke 'C' will be used along longer edges in a model, shorter stroke lengths, such as stroke 'A' for shorter edges. The following image shows a SketchUp model with the A, B, and C, sketchy edges painted on the vector edges.
SketchUp often stretches or shrinks the stroke to fit the edge because there is not a stroke with a length that is exact to the edge length. For example, when the user zooms out of the previous model, all C strokes, become shorter B strokes to accommodate the new view.
What are Templates, Style Files, and Stroke Files?
Strokes can be stored in template files, style files, or stroke files.
A template file is a single image file (.png) containing fields where you can draw your strokes or place previously drawn strokes. Templates help you ensure you draw your strokes to the correct dimensions for proper alignment in SketchUp.
A sketchy edge style file (.style) contains a series of strokes that form the edge style.
Predefined style files are located in the
styles directory beneath the SketchUp installation directory.
Individual strokes can also be stored in image files, such as JPEG (.jpg) files. These files, termed stroke files, cannot be used directly in SketchUp, but can be opened in Style Builder and combined with other strokes to create a new sketchy edge style.