For the past 15 years I have been working as a production designer in the television commercial production business. I have created hundreds of sets for dozens of film companies.
Designing with SketchUp has opened the door to a new age in set design. Like so many other designers, I had created visual presentations using pencil and paper. SketchUp has allowed me to design, and to produce endless pre-visualizations, with speed and efficiency.
On this particular project, I was asked to design a stylized kitchen set for a Dawn dishwashing detergent commercial. We needed to start building soon to meet the shooting schedule. Design and prep time was short.
Using SketchUp, I quickly created wall structures, blocked out the back dining room and placed the foreground counter where the product needed to be featured for filming. Resizing walls and moving components was a snap. I then added in details such as props, appliances and finally shadowing.
Working with the Director, we began to choose camera lenses and angles and to set up shots within SketchUp. I then rendered an animation showing the camera movement in relation to the set and talent. This allowed us to arrive on the shoot day with our shots fully previewed.
Presentation to agency and client:
SketchUp up allows me to quickly respond to client feedback. I am now able to make specific changes on the fly, avoid time-consuming redraws, and keep the approvals process moving.
One of the greatest features of SketchUp is the dimension and measure tool. I no longer have to re-draw in a CAD program. Using the 'Views Toolbar', I quickly provided working drawings to the carpenters and grips to meet our demanding schedule.
Here you can see a photo of the finished set.
I have also used SketchUp for a Dell commercial and numerous other spots. If you want to see more of my work please visit my website.
Please feel free to contact me with any questions.
Ken MacLeod Production Design / Art Direction