An Interview

So. I am being Interviewed these days :)

I was recently interviewed about the Independent Study I am taking in my Interior Design program at Harcum College. In this course I will work closely with my SketchUp trainer, Dan Brown while looking into 3D laser technologies, 3D Scanning, 3D Modeling and 3D Printing. "The Good Stuff". The study itself has sparked a little interest after myself and Dan Brown scanned the Charles H. Trout Library on the Harcum College campus last week. After scanning the library we plan to use the data to build the library as a 3D Model in Trimble's SketchUp. 

 Dan Brown (Sketchup Trainer / DB-3D) and myself, Elly Ball in the Charles H. Trout Library at Harcum College

Dan Brown (Sketchup Trainer / DB-3D) and myself, Elly Ball in the Charles H. Trout Library at Harcum College

Questions from Anders Back Director of Internal Communications and Publications at Harcum College

1) How did you become interested in 3D modelling in design? How long has this technology been available?

I have always had an interest with laser scanning technology. You could say, it runs in the family.  Although saying that, I never thought I would actually work within the industry. 

While taking Dan Brown's Sketchup class in the Interior Design program, I became more and more interested in 3D modeling; I started to really understand how laser technology could be used to aid my work and design. Because of my connection with the laser industry, I became more and more interested in the new software and technologies being made available. I then talked with Dan Brown and Heidi Techner (Program Director for Interior Design) about doing this Independent Study to really explore 3D modeling in more depth.

3D Laser scanning technology has been around for many years but it was not until the Faro Focus 3D, that it was suddenly more affordable and user friendly. This opened up many new markets for the industry, including Interior Design and Architecture. 

2) Is this the first time you have worked with this type of 3D Scanner?

No, I have worked with this type of laser scanner before, around 2011 when I was working at my father's company in the UK.  

3) Does it help to have a photographic background when using the Camera/ 3D Scanner?

A camera and the 3D scanner (Trimble TX5/ Faro Focus 3D) are similar but by no means the same. A camera only collects color information about what it sees, while a 3D scanner does more than this; it collects distance information. The 3D laser scanner used in my project measures horizontal and vertical angles plus distance +/- 1mm. At the rate of 1 million points a second the scanner quickly 'digitizes in 3D, the entire room/space in minutes. The instrument will then take a composite 360º photo overlay to overlay the 3D model and give it a 'virtual reality', the model produced is true to scale and accurate to a millimeter. 

Once a 3D model has been produced it can be exported to CAD programs like Trimble's SketchUp and used for multiple purposes within Architecture/ Design e.g Reverse engineering of a building, modifying the building and cutting and pasting '3D object' such as furniture into the model. This offers users a massive time and cost saving over existing methodologies. Conventional 2D floor plans and sections can then be produced automatically from the 3D model using CAD software.  

4) Do you have personal career goals in photography/ 3D scanning that include design work, or center around design work?

For the last 5 years I have worked as an Interior and Architectural Photographer and so my work has always centered around design work. But, I am always wanting to grow and learn new technologies, expanding my skills. This resulted in my entering into the Interior Design program at Harcum College. While working with Trimble's Sketchup and now the 3D scanner, I can confidently say that they will both be included in my personal career goals.  And yes, I have always had a fascination with property, buildings since a young age and so my career will most definitely steer within the lines of Design/ Architecture. 

Checkout the article on Harcum's website :

To see the captured 3D Scan Data check out the YouTube video: