I am sharing an exciting new feature in this blog post thanks to the release of Enscape 3.5; the new adjustable asset series.
The Enscape Asset Library and rendering environment now support a more sophisticated way of making adjustments and grouping assets with slight variations.
This post will explain how to make use of the new adjustable assets and will also touch upon custom assets, emphasizing the unlimited possibilities for when something specific is required for a particular project.
Accessing adjustable assets in Enscape
Enscape’s Asset Library has new assets thanks to the new adjustable asset feature. These new 3D assets are either an adjustment to the textures or slight variations of the geometry. Here, we are presented with various options before placement in the design platform or within Enscape.
By the way, everything visible in the renderings in this section is an Enscape asset, except the floor and the street. Even the buildings in the background, the people, vehicles, mailbox, street signals, and the bicyclist are all Enscape assets (and all previously available within Enscape).
The Adjustable filter
There is now an “Adjustable” filter in the Enscape Asset Library to help designers easily identify adjustable assets. The image previews also list how many options are grouped together in the upper right (note that the 1/1 options are editable within Enscape, as covered in the next section).
In the image below, the bench selected indicates that there are two variants of this asset available. When this asset is selected, the expanded tooltip also shows the options. Selecting an option changes the preview and is now ready to be placed in the model. The process is very easy to understand.
More variations are now available
Many potted plants now come with a non-potted option, as shown below. This is great, as you might want to use a different pot or plant the item in the ground.
Here is an Enscape-rendered image showing the bench and plant options side-by-side.
When an option is selected, and the preview changes, notice the tooltip (i.e. descriptive text) also changes. This is helpful if the difference is not immediately obvious in the preview.
Here is another Enscape-rendered 4k image showing a different set of benches and the task chairs just discussed.
Below are a set of electric vehicle (EV) charging stations. Even when backlit they still read really well.
Easily see asset variants
A great use for this new feature is managing multiple vehicle colors. This will minimize the clutter in the Asset Library, making it easier to find what you need. Notice this ambulance is not just a different color, but even has unique decals.
Here is a rendered view of the two ambulances.
How to adjust assets within Enscape
Assets are adjustable within Enscape while they are selected.
Take a moment to observe the differences between the following two images. There are material differences (both color and type of material) as well as clothing.
The material adjustments are helpful in that assets can be made to align with the design intent, while the people can help fill a crowded space in a more realistic way. This is especially true for the upcoming vehicle example (think large parking lot).
Spot the difference 😁
Changes made to the coffee table, sofa, chair arms, and clothing
Selecting assets to adjust
This workflow starts by selecting the Asset Library tool within Enscape. While this mode is active, previously placed assets may be selected, no matter how they were placed, either in the design platform or within Enscape.
Notice in the image below, the skier is selected, and five material options are presented in the asset panel on the left. Simply pick a material option to adjust the selected asset.
With the chair selected, in this case, we see material options for the wood portion of the chair. Once a different material is selected, the Apply Changes button must be selected in the lower right to confirm and apply the change.
Changing materials and colors
One more variation in this workflow is the ability to pick a custom color (Albedo). With the sofa selected, notice there is an option to change the material, and an option to change the albedo.
Clicking to change the color allows for a nearly infinite number of variations the designer can select from.
Changing the color of vehicle assets
In the next three images, the color of the vehicle and boxing gloves have been changed (the mobile scanner was added just for fun 😁).
Again, being able to change the color of some vehicles (not all Enscape-provided vehicles are adjustable at this time) will be super helpful when trying to fill a large parking lot.
For this vehicle example, we can select any color, like the previous sofa example. The other attributes of the material remain the same, such as reflectivity and glossiness.
When Enscape does not have the assets you need, it is possible to develop custom assets.
Lake|Flato has curated many custom assets to enhance diversity and complete project-specific scenes. We have custom assets accessible to everyone in the firm for the wide range of project types we work on, such as ranches, ski resorts, museums, region-specific vegetation, and more.
Custom assets are often purchased online and require optimization for real-time rendering.
To learn more about our custom people assets, check out this blog post on the RenderPeople website: Using 3D People to Enhance Diversity of Enscape Visualizations and Client Communication.
Like Enscape’s provided assets, custom assets can be grouped into categories as shown below. Because everyone can see all custom assets, based on how we deploy Enscape, we have a “Private Customer Object” folder to make sure someone does not use a statue, artwork, or some other object that is owned by or specific to a client.
For example, on one of our current school projects, we scanned several teachers from the school and created custom Enscape assets so they could be included in the renderings. These folks should never show up in other renderings (unless they agreed to that in writing).
The new adjustable feature does not yet work with custom assets. It is also worth mentioning that custom outdoor vegetation cannot be made to blow in the wind, so we often set the wind to 0 so all trees are still.
Here are some custom asset examples.
For the flag and pole shown below, we found one option and then used Blender to swap out the flag texture with other flags and save them as new/separate custom assets. If we get support for adjustable assets in the future, we can combine all of these and clean up the preview list.
The new adjustable assets in Enscape are great as they better organize the Asset Library and offer new options we did not previously have. And, when you need more, it is possible to purchase high-quality 3D content, optimize it, and add it to the custom assets tab for everyone in the office to use.