Friday, September 28, 2018

My Enscape Article On ArchDaily; 9 Ways to Make Your Renderings More Realistic

It is with much excitement, I write to tell you my latest Enscape article has been published on ArchDaily.

Link to ArchDaily article:
9 Ways to Make Your Renderings More Realistic

As the title implies, in this article, I offer nine tips to improve the quality of your renderings using Ensacpe, making them look more realistic.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Print PDF Set with Hyperlinks from Revit

The inspiration for today's post comes from Mike Matheny's comment in yesterdays post on printing sheets in a specific order. Mike used to work with me here are LHB and also wrote this post on my blog a while back: To BIM 360 Design or Not!

When printing a PDF, Revit will add hyperlinks automatically. This is a Revit thing, not a PDF printer driver thing. Here is an Autodesk help topic on that: About Printing to PDF

And, because the Bluebeam add-in Create PDF button on the Ribbon is apparently not using its own Bluebeam-installed print driver, we don't get hyperlinks as Mike correctly pointed out.

Here are how Hyperlinks do work, when using a PDF print driver...

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Printing Revit Sheets in Order using Bluebeam Revu CAD

Revit does not currently have a way to plot sheets in any order other than Alphabetically and Numerically. That means every time a set of drawings is plotted, the order of the sheets needs to be manually adjusted in the pdf after (Ex: Drag the G sheets above the A, P sheets above the M, etc.).

The closest we can get is the Autodesk Batch Print utility on the Revit Add-Ins tab. But this does not save the rearranged list and it hardwired to work with the Windows default printer. So, creating PDFs with this workflow is not very easy.

Bluebeam Revu CAD

If you have Bluebeam Revu CAD you can print sheets in a specific order to a combined PDF file, and the customized list can be saved for future use. You do need the "CAD" or "Extreme" version which adds a special panel to the Add-Ins tab in Revit (this panel is on the Output tab in AutoCAD and Civil 3D).

If you have Bluebeam Revu CAD and do not see the tools on the Ribbon, within Revit, then use...

Monday, September 24, 2018

Share a Coke with, me! Thanks, Autodesk!

I received a nice surprise in the mail last week from Autodesk. At first, I thought is was just a few bottles of Coke with Autodesk-branded bottle openers. Which would have been nice, just at that. But, a couple days later I found that the bottles are customized and one even has my name on it!

Good thing they were not Pepsi bottles as I might have given them away before I realized this:) Sorry, personal preference... would rather have Mt. Dew than Pepsi. But I love an ice cold Coca-Cola!

Super cool. Thanks, Autodesk!

My son posted this artsy photo, he took, on Snapchat saying...

Friday, September 21, 2018

New Book: Autodesk Revit for Architecture Certified User Exam Preparation

In the competitive world in which we live it is important to stand out to potential employers and prove your capabilities. One way to do this is by passing one of the Autodesk Certification Exams. A candidate who passes an exam has credentials from the makers of the software that you know how to use their software at a base level. This can help employers narrow down the list of potential interviewees when looking for candidates.

To help those interested in taking this exam I wrote a small preparation guide. As you can see in this photo, the book is thin, with just over 100 pages, and intended to be a simple, to-the-point, study guide. And, when I say "thin" I mean, compared to my 612 page commercial design book also pictured -- which, by the way, was first publishes in 2003!

Key Features

This book will prepare you to pass the Revit Certified User Exam on your first try
Designed for users with at least 40 hours of real-world Revit experience
Gives an overview of the exam process
Describes the main topics you need to be familiar with to pass the exam
Provides a multiple-choice sample exam to verify that you are ready for the exam

In Detail

Autodesk Revit for Architecture Certified User Exam Preparation is intended for the Revit user who has about 40 hours of real-world experience with Autodesk Revit software. This book will help guide you in your preparation for the Autodesk Certified User, Revit for architecture exam. By passing this exam you are validating your Revit skills, and are well on your way to the next level of certification.

Throughout the book you will find an overview of the exam process, the user interface and the four main topics: Elements/Families, Modeling, Views and Documentation. The specific topics you need to be familiar with to pass the test are explained in greater detail throughout the book. At the end of the book, there is a sample multiple-choice practice test to self-assess your readiness for the exam.

This book will help you pass the Autodesk Certified User exam on the first try, so you can avoid repeatedly taking the exam and obtain your certification sooner.

Continue reading...

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Creating Wall Baseboard in Revit - Option 4 - Slab Edge

The next option to look at for creating wall baseboard in Revit is the Slab Edge command. We are starting to get outside of the "intended" use for Revit tools and workflows. I will talk more about that in general in the next post on this topic.

First off, using the Slab Edge command requires we pick the edge of a floor or a model line. In most cases the edge of the main floor is likely not aligned with the wall that needs baseboard. However, if you use the "thin floor" workflow described in this link: Revit Floor Finish Workflow - Thin Floors and also covered in my Interior Design using Autodesk Revit 2019 book, the Slab Edge commands works really well in most cases.

Looking back at our home office example, if a thin floor defined the space, and we add a small jog at the door opening, then adding the Slab Edge representing wall baseboard takes four simple clicks.

Here are the results in a isolated 3D view.

Continue reading...

Monday, September 17, 2018

Program Development within Revit - Last Week at NDSU

Last week, in my graduate architecture seminar on Building Information Modeling at NDSU we talked about managing space requirements, aka the program statement or brief, before anything is modeling in Revit. We must understand what the "puzzle pieces" are before we can start the design process. This effort is often done within Excel, but can accomplished in Revit and provided additional value.

Rooms can be add to a schedule before actually being placed within the model using the Insert Data Row command. We can add custom parameters to track program area, equipment needs and even a percentage difference between program and actual area - the cell can also get filled with a color when the difference is too great, using Conditional Formatting, as shown here.

Creating another schedule of the same data, we can sort the rooms by department and get area sub-totals.

Continue reading...

Friday, September 14, 2018

Creating Wall Baseboard in Revit - Option 3

The next option to discuss is the "favorite" In-Place family.

But first, here are the previous posts on this topic:

It is fairly easy to create, checks a lot of the boxes but has some significant downsides which cause a lot of BIM managers and influencers to want to avoid them altogether.

In fact, the Dynamo-guru John Pierson, posted this on Twitter and got a huge response... when a Revit user tries to start an In-Place family they get a funny warning (click image to go to the tweet on Twitter):

Using this method we can create baseboard which continues along a sloped surface, like the ramp shown in the image below. This In-Place family uses the same built-up profile in a Sweep. When the sweep is selected, you see the material, profile and sub-category options in the properties. BTW, this was created in the Wall category so it can use the same sub-category as the Wall Sweep discussed previously in Option 2.

Continue reading...

Thursday, September 13, 2018

Minnesota State Senator Experiences Virtual Reality at LHB

Yesterday I had the opportunity to facilitate a Virtual Reality (VR) experience of an LHB project for few people visiting LHB, including Minnesota State Senator Erik Simonson.

CEEM (Clean Energy Economy Minnesota), a non-profit whose mission is to educate and stimulate economic growth in clean energy industries, brought together the Senator, LHB, Minnesota Power, Ecolibrium3, and CEE (Center for Energy and Environment) to learn about the CIP program. The CIP (Conservation Improvement Program) is intended to help organizations and households achieve energy efficiency. Minnesota Power provided rebates through their CIP program to support the LHB-designed DTA Duluth Transportation Center, which the group toured after the meeting.

I had a few minutes to demonstrate what LHB is doing with VR. In the next two photos I am showing the Senator the Essentia Health Wellness Center in VR, which is currently under construction in Hermantown.

Continue reading...

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Creating Wall Baseboard in Revit - Option 2

Following up on yesterday's post I will share another way in which we can represent baseboard on walls in Revit. Rather than include the baseboard definition in the wall type, this option uses the Wall Sweep tool. This also has some pros and cons.

Yesterday's post: Creating Wall Baseboard in Revit - Option 1

Looking at the same project, lets say we want to add baseboard to the other two walls in this home office - I hid the desk so we can focus on the bottom of the wall.

Continue reading to learn more...

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Creating Wall Baseboard in Revit - Option 1

There are a few ways to represent wall baseboard in Revit. Each have there pros and cons. I will cover one in this post and follow up with a couple more options in future posts.

The first option is to add it to the wall type. This makes it automatic and appear everywhere. First, I will show how to set it up and then point out a few potential problems with this option. Of course we will check out the results in Enscape:)

Read on to learn more...

Monday, September 10, 2018

BILT-Eur 2018 - Handouts Done and Free Revit Books

Us speakers were required to have our handouts done early last week for next month's BILT conference in Europe; this year the AEC technology-focused event will be in Ljubljana, Slovenia. My three handouts are turned in and I am now wrapping up the presentation material.

If you are going to the event, read on to learn about how you could win a Revit book in one of my sessions. If you are not going, it is not too late to change your mind, and even save ten percent.

Continue reading...

Saturday, September 8, 2018

Autodesk Revit Code Animated and In Person

Recently, Harlan Brumm, Revit Product Manager at Autodesk, posted something very interesting on Twitter... as seen in the image below (click image to go to Twitter).

Here is a link to the YouTube video showing the Revit code evolve over the last twenty years!

In the video you can see the date at the top of the screen. The earliest date is 1998-05-28. The first

Friday, September 7, 2018


I am once again excited to share a new Enscape blog post which I recently wrote. It is called Tips for Interior Designers.

The next image is the hero shot of the project I created just for this post in about 8 hours - this includes creating the Revit model! I will let you learn why in the actual post.

Continue reading and learn how to get a free chapter on Revit Materials...

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Revit Basics: Viewport Title Overview and How to Edit Them

A viewport title, or drawing title, is automatically added when a view is placed on a sheet. There are a few subtle things related to editing, or modifying them, that are helpful to know. And that is this "Revit Basics" post.

When you select the viewport, or drawing, on a sheet you can edit the length of the extension line which appears only in this situation (i.e. the viewport is selected). If you move the viewport now, the view title goes along for the ride.

If you select the view title directly, the grip is gone and you can move the view title apart from he viewport.

Continue Reading...