Importing Images for Textures
Bring in the smallest image file resolution for the project to lessen the impact on file size and moving through the model.
  • An application like Google Earth can get upset with excessive large image sizes.
  • While smaller is 'better', the maximum image size is 1024 pixels wide x 1024 pixels high.  If a modeling situation requires a higher resolution, cut up the large image in an image editor,  Import in the smaller sections and reassemble.
  • If you import images into your model, use JPG images rather than TIFF images. TIFF images tend to have large file sizes and take more computing resources to display.
  • PNG or JPEG files best for textures?

Resizing the image

  • An image editor like Adobe Photoshop, Photoshop Elements, Gimp, and CorelDraw can readily resize images.  TIP:  Try using File > Save for Web to optimize the saved file size.   Unless you are working on a model for a high-resolution image export, this is a place to help reduce your SKP file size.
  • If there's a quality option on saving a particular image extension, like JPG, choose high quality.
  • One of the easiest ways to view/resize an image file on a PC is to use IrfanView.  It's a free, quick-loading, multi-lingual, powerful media viewer/editor that's also easy to use.  In IrfanView go to Image > Resize/Resample.  BUT, if you are using PNGs with any transparency, the transparency may not be saved unless the PNG transparency options are selected.  If using a different, free image viewer, check for something similar.

Some notes on tiling texture

 Viva La Difference!

Wolfgang (aka VAM) created this original small, wire mesh tile from a linked JPG image given by Mark (aka Woodburyboy) in his forum inquiry. Courtesy of them, you too can compare the effect material size has on your SketchUp model - and add a gorgeous new material to your collection.

CLICK on the images to get a full-sized version.  Then right-click on the image to download.  Then import the image into SketchUp to make it into a texture.

The test:  Open a new session of SketchUp.  Import the first image.  Paint it on a rectangle.  Save the model.  Do the same thing with the second texture.  The SKP file size of a single face painted with the larger fence grid will be nearly doubled the file size of the same sized face painted with the single tile.

(Right-clicking on these thumbnail images will save even smaller copies.  Although there is not a clean transition between the transparent and colored region.  Using a thumbnail image as a SketchUp material could produce an unpleasant white outline artifact around each tile.)
  • Import the smallest image for tiling textures, which again is to minimize the imported file size.  
  • Granted, more complex textures, like cobblestone, may need larger tile images to look better.  But try to minimize texture size wherever possible.
  • Some online texture resources and tutorials on making your own tiling textures in a photo editing program are located over on the Resources page, Materials and Textures section. xx

Relevant Plugins

  • Eneroth Texture Positioning Tools  Eneroth - Repositioning texture toolbar.
  • Goldilocks  AdamB - Analyses your materials and model with respect to the current viewpoint and produces a bar chart showing which textures are about the right resolution.
  • massmaterialimporter  Create SKM material collections for SketchUp from folders of JPG texture images.
  • Material Maintenance  Myhand - Material manager.
  • Material Replacer  thomthom
  • Material Tools  thomthom - Material managers.
  • RpImageFilter  Render Plus - Image filter inside SketchUp.  Free - Windows
  • Texture Resizer  Aerilius - SketchUp plugin which can mass downsample textures used in a model.
  • TextureHelper  Smustard - Simple single-click rotation, scaling, and arrow-key positioning of textures on faces.

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