How to Draw a Simple Model in Google SketchUp 8 - dummies

How to Draw a Simple Model in Google SketchUp 8

By Aidan Chopra

By putting together the various SketchUp features, you can produce a knockout model in no time.

So what are you going to build? Perhaps a doghouse. The nice thing about doghouses is that they’re a lot like peoplehouses in the ways that count: They have doors and roofs, and just about everybody has seen one.

You should see a row of tools across the top of your modeling window, a little person, and three colored modeling axes (red, green, and blue lines).


Follow these steps to build a doghouse:

  1. Delete the little person on your screen.

    Using the Select tool (the arrow on the far left of your toolbar), click the little person to select her and then choose Edit, Delete.

  2. Choose Camera, Standard Views, Iso.

    This command switches you to an isometric (3D) view of your model, which allows you to build something without having to “move around.”

  3. Draw a rectangle on the ground.

    1. Click once to place one corner on the left side of your screen.

    2. Click again to place the opposite corner on the right side of your screen.

    Remember that you’re in a 3D, perspective, view of the world, so your rectangle looks more like a diamond — 90-degree angles don’t look like 90-degree angles in perspective.


  4. Use the Push/Pull tool to extrude your rectangle into a box.

    1. Click the rectangle once to start the push/pull operation.

    2. Click again, somewhere above your rectangle, to stop pushing/pulling.

    At this point, you should have something that looks like this; if you don’t, use Push/Pull again to make your box look about the right height.


    If you’re happily pushing/pulling away on your box and everything suddenly disappears, you pushed/pulled the top of your box all the way to the ground. Just choose Edit, Undo and keep going.

  5. Draw a couple diagonal lines for your roof.


    1. Click once at the midpoint of the top of your box’s front face to start your line.

    2. Click again somewhere along one of the side edges of your box’s front face to end your line.

    3. Repeat the previous two steps to draw a similar (but opposite) line from the midpoint to the edge on the other side of the face.

  6. Push/pull the triangles away to leave a sloped roof.


    1. Select the Push/Pull tool and then click the right triangular face once to start the push/pull operation.

    2. Move your cursor to the right to push the triangle as far as it will go (even with the end of your box).

    3. Click again (on the triangle) to end the push/pull operation and to make the triangular face disappear.

    4. d.Still using the Push/Pull tool, double-click the left triangular face to repeat the previous push/pull operation, making that face disappear as well.

  7. Draw a rectangle on your front face.

    Switch back to the Rectangle tool and draw a rectangle on the front face of your pointy box. Make sure that the bottom of your rectangle is flush with the bottom of your box by watching for the red On Edge hint to appear before you click.


  8. Draw an arc on top of the rectangle you just drew.


    1. Click the upper-left corner of the rectangle to place one endpoint of your arc. Make sure that you see the green Endpoint hint before you click.

    2. Click the upper-right corner of the rectangle to place the other endpoint of your arc.

    3. Move your cursor up to bow out the line you’re drawing into an arc and then click when you’re happy with how it looks.

  9. Select the Eraser tool and then click the horizontal line between the rectangle and the arc to erase that line.

  10. Push/pull the doorway inward.

    Use the Push/Pull tool to push in the “doorway” face you created in Steps 7-9 just a bit.

  11. Erase the horizontal line at the bottom of the doorway by clicking it with the Eraser tool.