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Shaded Elevations - how to achieve pure white? How to achieve solid+transparent areas within fills?

Paul King
Expert
Hi, just wondering how people are getting white painted elements in shaded elevations to appear white, rather than grey? I cannot seem to find any surface definition characteristics that result in this outcome.

Also, has anyone come up with a cunning way that a cover fill for a perforated wall panel element can have a pattern of white masking areas alternating with transparent hole areas that are individually outlined with black pen? (as opposed to the outline of the fill as a whole)?
I can achieve this in 3D with alpha channel for transparency in surface texture, but cannot think of a way in 2D.

Really hoping to avoid physically modeling every perforation to achieve this, as there are thousands of holes, which will massively slow down the model.
PAUL KING
https://www.prime.net.nz
ArchiCAD 8-25
Octane Render Plugin for ArchiCAD
Twinmotion 2022
Windoze 11
Intel Core i9 10900K
Nvidia Gforce RTX 3080
32 Gb DDR3
2x4K monitor extended desktop
20 REPLIES 20

Barry Kelly
Moderator
In the elevation settings you will have to set the uncut surfaces to "Own surface colour (non-shaded)"
You can still have shadows on so you will get the shadows cast from other elements.


Barry.

One of the forum moderators.
Versions 6.5 to 25
Dell XPS- i7-6700 @ 3.4Ghz, 16GB ram, GeForce GTX 960 (2GB), Windows 10
Dell Precision 3510 - i7 6820HQ @ 2.70GHz, 16GB RAM, AMD FirePro W5130M, Windows 10

Paul King
Expert
Thanks Barry

That is what I currently have - but if I define the fill associated with the perforated surface to use using just lines for the fill pattern, the holes in perforated sheet surface are not transparent - I just see the linework over a solid background.

If I paste a solid fill with holes cut into it into the associated symbol fill definition dialog, this creates a solid black and white shaded appearance to that surface in elevation - again no transparency - even when transparency is switched on in shaded elevations.
PAUL KING
https://www.prime.net.nz
ArchiCAD 8-25
Octane Render Plugin for ArchiCAD
Twinmotion 2022
Windoze 11
Intel Core i9 10900K
Nvidia Gforce RTX 3080
32 Gb DDR3
2x4K monitor extended desktop

Barry Kelly
Moderator
I was only answering the first part of your question.

Can you show an image of what you are trying to do with the perforations?

A surface material can have transparency that will make the entire element transparent (like glass).

Or you can attach an image to your surface material that has an masking channel built into it but this only shows in OpenGL and CineRender.
The elevations only use the vectorial engine and not OpenGL.

Barry.

One of the forum moderators.
Versions 6.5 to 25
Dell XPS- i7-6700 @ 3.4Ghz, 16GB ram, GeForce GTX 960 (2GB), Windows 10
Dell Precision 3510 - i7 6820HQ @ 2.70GHz, 16GB RAM, AMD FirePro W5130M, Windows 10

Paul King
Expert
I have attached a 3D view to give some context, and a section of shaded elevation view.

I am basically trying to find out what sneaky things people do to depict perforated materials in shaded elevations.

I don't want to have to physically model the holes, or resort to rendered elevations if at all possible.

Because perforated sheet materials are so common these days, I am hoping someone has come up with an effective and efficient workaround for showing these in shaded views... Some way of creating a masking overlay with holes in all the right places perhaps.
PAUL KING
https://www.prime.net.nz
ArchiCAD 8-25
Octane Render Plugin for ArchiCAD
Twinmotion 2022
Windoze 11
Intel Core i9 10900K
Nvidia Gforce RTX 3080
32 Gb DDR3
2x4K monitor extended desktop

Barry Kelly
Moderator
Unless someone else does have a sneaky method, I am afraid it is going to be model the holes.

Even if you could use a transparent material, it would still appear solid in elevation unless you turn on transparency in the elevation settings.
Then all of the glass in your windows will also become transparent and you will see everything inside the building.

With regards to modelling, would the new curtain wall tool be a valid solution for the repeating holes.
I rarely use the curtain wall tool so don't really know without experimenting.


Barry.

One of the forum moderators.
Versions 6.5 to 25
Dell XPS- i7-6700 @ 3.4Ghz, 16GB ram, GeForce GTX 960 (2GB), Windows 10
Dell Precision 3510 - i7 6820HQ @ 2.70GHz, 16GB RAM, AMD FirePro W5130M, Windows 10

Paul King
Expert
Thanks Barry

Curtain wall tool worth a look - never tried custom panels with random angled edges like this. May be a bit hard where panels fold over and become horizontal though.

Plan B would be to create a boolean cutter object that replicates to the repeating pattern, though lots of work required to constrain holes (and part holes) to a defined distance in from raking panel edges for all the panel shapes. Especially every time each panel shape and perforation pattern changes during design development.

Or plan C, just live with lack of transparent holes I guess..,.
PAUL KING
https://www.prime.net.nz
ArchiCAD 8-25
Octane Render Plugin for ArchiCAD
Twinmotion 2022
Windoze 11
Intel Core i9 10900K
Nvidia Gforce RTX 3080
32 Gb DDR3
2x4K monitor extended desktop

Paul King
Expert
Well curtain wall option may be a dead end - I can create a perforation pattern by making a scheme grid corresponding to perforation repeat distance each way - and using custom panel type defined using a slab with holes, and with invisible frame type of zero width between each panel.

Problem is that at the outer boundary edges of the curtain wall, the custom panels in affected edge locations distort to fit rather than allowing themselves to be cut to fit - this is true whether the boundary edge is orthogonal or angled.

Gets even worse if you rotate the scheme grid to anything non orthogonal.

Maybe a curtain wall guru out there knows a better way, or what setting I am missing to prevent panel distortion?
PAUL KING
https://www.prime.net.nz
ArchiCAD 8-25
Octane Render Plugin for ArchiCAD
Twinmotion 2022
Windoze 11
Intel Core i9 10900K
Nvidia Gforce RTX 3080
32 Gb DDR3
2x4K monitor extended desktop

The cutoff for transparancy for surfaces is at 50%. If you set it at 49, glass won't be transparant in elevations, but you can still see through it in 3D.

This allows you to somewhat cheat with shades of transparancy.

I use a percentage fill for something like exterior glass railings where I might want to see what's behind them.

I'd model the panels as a slab on the floor plan, make a MOD with circular columns on a hidden SEO layer that I can copy around the grid as needed and save each panel as its own object.

Edit:
Regarding the 'colours' in elevations, this seems to be drawn from a fairly limited pallette of colours, you can change settings for internal engine all you like, but the shades are very limited, it seems. We never could get a light enough shade of 'white' either. We get better results with vectorial fills and graphic overrides if we want to add a bit of shading for clarity.
Erwin Edel, Project Lead, Leloup Architecten
www.leloup.nl

ArchiCAD 9-24 NED FULL
Windows 10 Pro
Adobe Design Premium CS5

Paul King
Expert
THanks Irwin

A good tip with transparency%

The individual modelling of panels & SEO was something I was trying hard to avoid, as they will evolve in shape and perforation style - but I my other options seem to be limited....

Fallback was to make a forest of columns as cutters and just keep dropping slab of different shapes and orientations on it to auto cut holes, space click perimeter edge beam /trimer and save result as morph or GDL object. - but once made, hard to stretch shapes or swap hole patterns in 20 different panels each time ...
PAUL KING
https://www.prime.net.nz
ArchiCAD 8-25
Octane Render Plugin for ArchiCAD
Twinmotion 2022
Windoze 11
Intel Core i9 10900K
Nvidia Gforce RTX 3080
32 Gb DDR3
2x4K monitor extended desktop

If you are reasonably familiar with GDL scripting, making a stretchable shape and giving an option to put your 'grid' of holes on an angle is probably not too hard to script.

I ussually make an estimate of how much time I will spent changing and saving my assembly of slabs and such as a custom library part vs. how long it would take me to script something smart.

By the way, columns should automatically punch holes, if the building material is stronger than that of the slab. That's why I suggested making a module of columns arranged in your pattern, copying that around over a slab. It doesn't matter if it extends past the slab border, just save only the slab as object. You can then change the module and it should change for all your funky shapes.

Grasshopper connection is probably great for this stuff, but requires having two more software licenses.
Erwin Edel, Project Lead, Leloup Architecten
www.leloup.nl

ArchiCAD 9-24 NED FULL
Windows 10 Pro
Adobe Design Premium CS5

Paul King
Expert
Thanks Erwin.

I have done a smattering of GDL over the years - but the problem is that once I allow myself to open that particular door, nobody can convince me to stop trying and learning what I need to do enroute until I succeed. Solving problems can get a bit addictive.

Not really more efficient for the client, or for me, if this is a one off situation that I may never encounter again.
Odd are high that if it ever comes up again, 3 ArchiCAD versions from now, there will be a much better way by then.
PAUL KING
https://www.prime.net.nz
ArchiCAD 8-25
Octane Render Plugin for ArchiCAD
Twinmotion 2022
Windoze 11
Intel Core i9 10900K
Nvidia Gforce RTX 3080
32 Gb DDR3
2x4K monitor extended desktop

Another brainwave: complex profile that is a huge area of your pattern, extrude it with a wall. Create the frame around it with beams / columns and use SEO to trim away the bits you don't need.
Erwin Edel, Project Lead, Leloup Architecten
www.leloup.nl

ArchiCAD 9-24 NED FULL
Windows 10 Pro
Adobe Design Premium CS5

Paul King
Expert
Good thought! Basically editing a fill. Now all I need is a way to make solid fill with complex repeating holes pattern. (I can do Ctrl-U to make an array of holes if I have to - but even more elegance if I could get fill pattern itself to do the work - sadly, in my experiments, even though under AC23 I can now create a perforation pattern fill that LOOKS like solid and void, the white areas in fill pattern are still read as 'fill' by complex profile )
PAUL KING
https://www.prime.net.nz
ArchiCAD 8-25
Octane Render Plugin for ArchiCAD
Twinmotion 2022
Windoze 11
Intel Core i9 10900K
Nvidia Gforce RTX 3080
32 Gb DDR3
2x4K monitor extended desktop

Barry Kelly
Moderator
Unfortunately you can not use a patterned fill.
You must physically cut the holes in the fill.


You mentioned before a boolean cutter.
I would probably do that.

I would just use round beams (version 23) spread out in the pattern you want over an area larger than your panel or in earlier versions create a complex profile of round beams, again slightly bigger than your panel.
Create the panel and frame - the panel with a building material weaker than the beams and the frame stronger so it will not be cut by the beams.
The beams will automatically cut the holes.
Then select the panel and convert it to a morph - this will 'fix' the holes and that way you don't have thousands of hidden beams all over the place (although you can do that if you want rather than saving as a morph).
Then move on to the next panel and save that as another morph.
Repeat for each panel.

For the horizontal parts of your panels you could do the same but with columns.

Keep just the one set of beams/columns in a hidden layer just in case you need to modify any of the panels - just create a new one.


Barry.

One of the forum moderators.
Versions 6.5 to 25
Dell XPS- i7-6700 @ 3.4Ghz, 16GB ram, GeForce GTX 960 (2GB), Windows 10
Dell Precision 3510 - i7 6820HQ @ 2.70GHz, 16GB RAM, AMD FirePro W5130M, Windows 10

Paul King
Expert
Thanks Barry - yes that is sounding like the best option currently.

Would love for there to be a straightforward procedural way to define stretchy perforated panels

Something like the CADimage wall , roof and slab covering tools, but with custom boolean cutters in a repeat pattern as the coverings.
PAUL KING
https://www.prime.net.nz
ArchiCAD 8-25
Octane Render Plugin for ArchiCAD
Twinmotion 2022
Windoze 11
Intel Core i9 10900K
Nvidia Gforce RTX 3080
32 Gb DDR3
2x4K monitor extended desktop

I think GS preferred way of doing this stuff is through the grasshopper connection, rather than developing this stuff themselves.
Erwin Edel, Project Lead, Leloup Architecten
www.leloup.nl

ArchiCAD 9-24 NED FULL
Windows 10 Pro
Adobe Design Premium CS5

Lingwisyer
Rockstar
Making a stretchy frame that also defines SOE planes is not that hard in GDL. Reasonably simple trig, but a fair bit of it. The difficulty is creating the perforated panel. You could possibly set it to array a complex profile that is extruded to your screen thickness which is then cropped by the previously mentioned SOE planes. Not sure how easy it would be to hide the connecting edges of the profile though but if you cannot, then your profile would just be required to be that maximum size.

Paul wrote:
I have done a smattering of GDL over the years - but the problem is that once I allow myself to open that particular door, nobody can convince me to stop trying and learning what I need to do enroute until I succeed. Solving problems can get a bit addictive.

I find my issue is that once I achieve what I want, I end up wanting to add more customisations and such, more than what I currently require which also sometimes breaks things...




Ling.
AC22-23 AUS 7000
Self-taught, bend it till it breaks.

Win10 | E5620 x 2 | 24GB | K2200 RIP PSU
Win10 | R5 2600 | 16GB | GTX1660

Paul King
Expert
Yes - the edge cropping could be fun.
Have never attempted SEO within GDL - can you subtract with sideways extrusion at any angle?

Must resist the temptation to try!
PAUL KING
https://www.prime.net.nz
ArchiCAD 8-25
Octane Render Plugin for ArchiCAD
Twinmotion 2022
Windoze 11
Intel Core i9 10900K
Nvidia Gforce RTX 3080
32 Gb DDR3
2x4K monitor extended desktop

Barry Kelly
Moderator
Paul wrote:
Yes - the edge cropping could be fun.
Have never attempted SEO within GDL - can you subtract with sideways extrusion at any angle?

Must resist the temptation to try!
Go on, give it a go.
The cropping is just CUTPLANEs moved and rotated into position.
Or you could just create a prism in the shape of the panel and not worry about cutting the edges.

Using GROUPs you can add, subtract, intersect the groups together.
So yes, the 'SEO' can be horizontal, vertical or at any angle.
You just create the elements (could be an array of cylinders that changes size with your panel) and make a GROUP of them.
Mind you, working with groups is a little tricky as you can't see them until you PLACEGROUP.

Barry.

One of the forum moderators.
Versions 6.5 to 25
Dell XPS- i7-6700 @ 3.4Ghz, 16GB ram, GeForce GTX 960 (2GB), Windows 10
Dell Precision 3510 - i7 6820HQ @ 2.70GHz, 16GB RAM, AMD FirePro W5130M, Windows 10

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