Skip to main content

A SketchUp prize for Bob Borson’s Playhouse Competition

If you’re a follower of the SketchUpdate Blog, there’s a good chance you’ve come across Bob Borson’s Life of an Architect blog. Alongside his many great posts*, a staple of the blog is Bob’s annual and extremely fun Playhouse Competition. This year, I’m happy to say that we’re joining the party and sponsoring a SketchUp Category for the Playhouse Competition.

*Ed. note: two personal favorites are Graphic Standards and Meetings Are a Waste of Time

A SketchUp prize for Bob Borson’s Playhouse CompetitionMany of the best Life of an Architect Playhouse Competition finalists were designed in SketchUp (like Tyler Murph’s Reading Room, shown here). This year, the best of the best wins a trip to 3D Basecamp 2016! Click the image to for more playhouse inspiration.

This is typically the part of the post where I’d think up a clever reason why SketchUp is partnering with Bob. But in an ode to Mr. Borson’s candid style, I’ll just say: it’s kind of a no brainer. Over the years, we’ve seen tons of expertly crafted SketchUp models amongst previous Playhouse finalists. The real question is: why isn’t there a category for the best SketchUp work already?

Here are the details that matter for rallying to submit your own SketchUp Playhouse proposal/entry by April 15th!

The Prize
We have to say: we think this is a crazy great prize for the one (and only) winner of the SketchUp Category.

  • A SketchUp Pro license (and a credit to get the SketchUp Mobile Viewer for free)
  • A free trip to 3D Basecamp 2016 in Steamboat Springs (for US/CA participants)
  • A SketchUp swag bag
  • A review of your Playhouse project on the SketchUp Blog.
  • And… your playhouse will get built!

We’ll also have five honorable mention finalists who will each receive a SketchUp prize pack.

The Criteria
How will we pick a winner? Great question. The first phase of winner selection will be in Bob’s capable hands. Out of the finalists for his own competition, we’ll sort out which entries were designed in SketchUp. (If we’re not sure, we’ll ask you!).

From there: the winning SketchUp Playhouse will exhibit the following criteria:

  • Excellent use of fundamental SketchUp skills: as-built modeling, composing scenes, texturing, exporting high quality vector linework. And even more stuff like that (which you can learn here on the SketchUp blog).
  • The use of simple, interesting forms in service of a terrifically fun idea.
  • Post-processing: we want to see smartly rendered scenes that allow your idea to be clearly communicated and look great too.
  • Graphic Design: Your proposal has beautiful graphic layout. Your model should be great; your proposal should be better.
  • Efficient construction: we’ve got the bill, but you’ve certainly considered the time and cost of construction for the project.

To Enter
Well, that’s easy: follow the full contest instructions from Bob’s blog, and submit your proposal on Houzz. Entries are due on April 15th… I’ll just stop blogging about it, so you can get after it!

About the Author

A product manager on the SketchUp team, Mark is also an avid Colorado outdoorsman. You’re likely to find him roaming Boulder's mountain bike trails, scaring up marmots, pikas, and black bears.

Profile Photo of Mark Harrison