3D floor plan of a double-pen slave cabin

This week I had the chance to puzzle through my first big project. I decided to task myself with building a “3D Floor plan” of the double-pen slave cabin. It was my first time making something that wasn’t just a simple shape for experimenting, and I learned a ton. The most critical part of building the floor plan was trying to grasp the way the measurements work in 3ds Max. Once you set the measurements (inches, feet, decimal, fractional, etc), and you start creating an object, if you change the measurement settings your object gets all messed up.

I had set my measurements to be decimal feet, thinking it was arbitrary and I would be fine. Here’s the catch, though. We had take the measurements in decimal feet, so I had to go through and do a lot of math. So whole time I was building this floor plan, I had about 13 sheets of paper scattered around me, color-coordinated with measurements in decimal inches.

Work space full of paper measurements!

Needless to say, I had some issues. The door height started out being 4 feet, whereas the windows were 7 feet in the air, the walls were 1.5 feet thick… the list went on and on. However, this was a great opportunity to truly grasp how important it is to model dimension and size correctly in 3D modelling.

Evidently I figured it out, and voila! Here is my final product:

Screenshot of the work done on the double-pen slave cabin.

Author: Rachel Swoap

Rachel Swoap (’19) is the 3D Artist for the Uncle Sam Plantation project. A double major in Computer Science and Studio Art, Rachel was the Graphic Designer for an artificial intelligence tutoring game and has created websites, with a focus on user experience (UX), for a company in Boston. She is quite passionate about Art and Computer Science, and plans on exploring both fields more in the future.

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