Making a model of a real building using photographs and then 'projecting' those photographs onto the model can give a startlingly realistic result but it can also be quite difficult. Therefore it is important to begin with a very simple shaped building. At the same time, you want to be able to take photos of the building from all sides and from a distance, without obstacles such as trees between the camera and the building. So ideally there should be no other buildings or obstacles close to the building in question. How can you get photos of the roof? You may be able to use a satellite image from Google maps.
The 'official' Google way of making a model of a real building is to take photographs of two sides of the building at once, with the camera close to a corner of the building. However such photos won't look very realistic when projected onto the walls of the building so the method below is based on photographs of building taken of one wall at a time, with the camera lined up with the middle of the wall. I chose a building on the VUB campus, about 100m from building C of our school. Do you recognise it?
This building has the advantage of being square when seen from above, and I was able to take decent photos of three of the four sides. I could not get a usable photo of the north side however, so we will have to cheat a bit by reusing one of the other three sides. I have used Paint Shop Pro to crop (trim) these photos and to make sure there are no perspective effects (making sure that rectangles look rectangular).
The south side:
The east side:
The west side:
The last photo looks distorted because the only way I could photograph the whole wall was to photograph it from an angle since another building was close by. But at least I have corrected for this perspective so that the main wall looks rectangular.
The video. This video is silent and lasts 7.5 minutes. If it does not play smoothly then pause it for a minute or two to allow some video to be buffered into your browser's cache.
If you wish to download the SWF file you can do so by right-clicking HERE and choosing 'Save Target As...'. Be warned that this is a very large file (15MB).