Fun with Materials in Chief Architect, Part 2 - Designers Show 115

designers show Nov 21, 2023
Fun with Materials in Chief Architect, Part 2 - Designers Show 115

Welcome to The "Designers Show" by Chief Experts, where design isn't just an art—it's a profit center!  In this episode, we delve into various advanced techniques and tips that are essential for both novice and experienced users. From discussions on materials and software nuances to in-depth tutorials on property dimension scaling, texture manipulation, and realistic landscape creation, this video is a treasure trove of knowledge.

Join our experts, Dan, Renee, and Kevin, as they guide you through a series of demonstrations and Q&A sessions. They cover a wide range of topics including the use of Chief Architect in conjunction with tools like TwinMotion and Photoshop, strategies for protecting intellectual property in design, and the anticipated features of Chief Architect X16.

Whether you're looking to enhance your design skills, solve specific software challenges, or simply gain a deeper understanding of Chief Architect's capabilities, this video is an invaluable resource.

Tune in for a journey through the intricacies of Chief Architect, and discover tips and tricks that will elevate your architectural design projects to the next level.



Introduction and Casual Conversation (00:00 - 01:40)

  • Welcoming viewers and discussing Renee's potential absence.
  • Brief chat about Thanksgiving and its timing this year.

Discussion on Materials and Chief Architect Software (01:40 - 02:24)

  • Open for questions about materials.
  • Sharing experiences with a complex project and framing a house using solids in Chief Architect.

Upcoming Training Classes and Events (02:24 - 06:06)

  • Announcement of intermediate and advanced training classes in December.
  • Details about the Total Immersion Summit in March, including schedule and networking opportunities.

Kevin's Transition and Upcoming Classes (06:06 - 11:09)

  • Kevin talks about his transition from full-time design build to design and consulting.
  • Introduction to a series of classes focusing on the art of profitable design.
  • A specific class titled "What's Mine is Mine" about protecting intellectual property and experiences with design theft.

Discussion on Intellectual Property and Design Protection (11:13 - 11:18)

  • Kevin elaborates on the importance of protecting intellectual property in design work.
  • Encourages feedback on the proposed course topic.

Materials and Chief Architect Software Continued (11:18 - 12:35)

  • Further discussion on materials in Chief Architect.
  • Renee joins the conversation, albeit with some technical difficulties.

Using Oblique Images and Property Information for Design (12:35 - 20:47)

  • Dan demonstrates how to use Google Maps and Zillow for gathering property information.
  • Discussion on using municipality websites for property tax information and plat maps.
  • Techniques for capturing and using oblique images from county websites for design purposes.
  • The importance of understanding the limitations of aerial imagery for precise measurements.

Scaling and Adjusting Property Dimensions in Chief Architect (20:53 - 31:03)

  • Dan demonstrates how to accurately scale and adjust property dimensions in Chief Architect using various tools and techniques.
  • Discussion on the importance of surveys for accurate property measurements.
  • Tips on using Google Maps and municipality websites for gathering property information.
  • Techniques for rotating and aligning property images within Chief Architect for accurate design work.
  • Adding a North pointer for orientation before rotating the property layout.

Using Images in Chief Architect for Design (31:03 - 32:30)

  • Discussion on capturing and using images from Google Street View in Chief Architect.
  • Tips on integrating these images into design plans for a more realistic representation.

Materials and Textures in Landscaping and Dry Areas (32:30 - 32:30)

  • A client query about the type of grass suitable for dry, desert-like areas.
  • Renee shares his approach to creating an image that conveys the concept of landscaping in such environments.

Creating Realistic Landscapes in Chief Architect and TwinMotion (32:35 - 42:48)

  • Discussion on creating realistic landscapes and grass textures in Chief Architect and Twinmotion.
  • Techniques for using displacement maps and instancing to create varied and realistic grass textures.
  • Renee demonstrates how to use pre-done textures and 3D grass in Chief Architect.
  • Explanation of the limitations of Chief Architect in creating complex landscapes compared to Twinmotion.
  • Tips on using Photoshop for combining site pictures with Chief Architect models for realistic renderings.
  • Renee showcases a recent project to illustrate the use of Chief Architect and Photoshop in creating detailed site plans and building renderings.

Exploring Textures and Materials in Chief Architect (42:56 - 54:03)

  • Discussion on creating and finding textures for Chief Architect, including grass and brick textures.
  • Renee shares his experience with using ChatGPT for generating textures and the challenges of creating seamless textures.
  • Introduction to SketchUp Textures, a website for downloading textures, and the benefits of membership for additional resources.
  • Tips on using Chief Architect to change the color of materials using the Benjamin Moore color library.
  • Explanation of texture maps and their role in material appearance in Chief Architect.
  • Addressing issues related to sharing Chief Architect files and ensuring textures appear correctly on different computers.

File Backup Strategies and Online Storage in Chief Architect (54:08 - 55:26)

  • Discussion on the best practices for backing up Chief Architect files, including the use of the 'Backup Entire Plan' feature.
  • Anticipation of the new online file storage feature in Chief Architect X16, which should facilitate easier sharing and access to textures and files.

Material and Texture Manipulation Techniques (55:26 - 63:35)

  • Detailed demonstration on changing the grain direction of materials in Chief Architect.
  • Techniques for creating and editing materials, including rotating textures and using the 'Explode 3D Solid' feature for more precise control.
  • Discussion on the challenges of working with patterned materials like shingles and strategies for achieving desired visual effects.
  • Closing remarks, emphasizing the increasing importance and utility of mastering material manipulation in Chief Architect.