Heve you ever noticed that many of the city models generated from publically available data are often missing some of the cultural or finer detail from the real world scene, such as statues, fountains, etc.? While these finer elements can easily be captured and modeled using production reality capture systems, like LiDAR, I have found that sometimes I don't need all of that, I really just want to stick the single statue of Yoda, from the Lucas Films' headquarters, on my front lawn and call it a day.
Well, now anyone can do this using a standard camera via Autodesk 123d Catch. 123d Catch is a free application that allows you to capture multiple photos of just about any subject which are then sent to the cloud and and turned into a 3D digital object. This provides a really interesting solution for capturing some of that final detail needed for a city model to make it look complete.
So, here's how I captured Yoda (or as best I could anyway) and stuck him on my front lawn...
- I downloaded 123d Catch and watched all of the tutorial videos. These are a must as you'll soon see (my Yoda model is...well...kind of off).
- I took about 40 photos of the Yoda statue and imported them into 132d Catch
- After sending the photos to the Cloud via 123d Catch, I did my best to match some of the unmatched points in the scenes. For best results hold the left mouse button down to zoom in on points to be matched. I didn't do this and my model suffered in the end.
- After resending the model to the Cloud again, 123d catch finally had a relatively decent(ish) model of Yoda...at least one good enough to export.
- Exporting to an FBX via the File menu is easy
- Finally, I manually placed my Yoda(ish) model in my AIM model
And that's it! With a decent camera and some good photos, anyone should be able to enhance AIM models with 3D captures.