Import DWG files.
As you work on commercial visualizations projects, you`ll encounter height drawings in DWG format. This is one of the most common formats for encoding line drawing in the industry. To view these drawings, you can use Autodesk`s free DWG Viewer. For editing you need packages like AutoCAD or ARCHICAD.
The files usually have the front, left and top views in the same view with additional details. To prepare these files for import into 3ds Max, we need to clean them up a bit. Open AutoCAD and remove everything except the floor plan of the building. This includes furniture, decorations, lamps, trees, etc.
It is important to keep the DWG files simple, as too many shapes can overload the Max Viewport. After the cleanup, we can simply drag and drop the file over the viewport.
We also need to set up the Max interface for a better workflow:
- Set the system units to millimeters in Menu > Customize > Set up units for optimal performance. Set the display units so that you can conveniently work with them to enter measurements.
- Go back to the generall settings under Customize and enable the option “Use texture coordinates from the real world”. With this option you can describe the texture size in real measured values.
Before we start modeling, we need to manage the imported shapes. It`s always a good idea to put them in their own layer now. Select all shapes and give them the correct wire color on the Modify tab. Solve any additional parts and create groups for the different views.
Use the Front, Left and Top Views to rotate and align the corresponding line drawings. Make sure the elevation plans are centered on the origin in the viewport, If you start modeling and render too far away from the origin, you may notice light bugs and errors.
Now is the time to review the scale of the elevation plans to bring them into line with the units of the real world. You can do this by using the TapeMeasure tool in the Helpers section. Check the ceiling height and scale the entire plan to match the actual room height.
The basic process for modeling structures is as follows: