SketchUp Is Really Hard (But Don’t Skip It!)

I’ve heard a hundred times that SketchUp is really easy to use.


SketchUp may get easier to use, but SketchUp’s learning curve is really steep when you have no experience whatsoever with 3D modeling. It may also be easier than other tools. I have no idea. But drawing each board and grouping each little thing and layers and angles and–it’s HARD.

You know what else is hard? Designing a whole house from scratch. And it’s that challenge that makes SketchUp absolutely necessary.

You need the most detailed plan you can possibly put together, because the last thing you want to be doing is standing there staring at the outside of your house wondering how you should stagger the butt joins in your siding based on where your studs are. THAT is a colossal waste of time.

Building the house on my computer screen prior to building it in real life has been exhausting and frustrating and painful, but I don’t want to think about how much worse it would be to be making these decisions on the fly while actually constructing the house. It’s so much easier to use the “push/pull” tool to make a board longer than it is to talk your 2×4 into growing a little bit despite that last cut you made.

If you’re designing your own house, I can’t recommend highly enough that you draw every single board in SketchUp, based on an accurate drawing of your own trailer. Later, when it’s time to set angles and make measurements and stuff, you’ll already know.

Plus, if you put in the time BEFORE you actually start construction, you can work out the questions about how much of each material you need and minimize your waste.

Save cost, save time, save frustration. SketchUp is worth it, even though it’s hard.

Freeing Link

I haven’t been blogging. I’ve been building, but not blogging. And you know why?

I feel a lot of pressure to write in a way that appeals to people, that is “likable,” instead of using my own words and my own voice.

If I have to say things in someone else’s voice, I’m never going to be able to say anything at all. There will never be a blog. You will never know how this goes.

And fuck that shit.

Heck, I probably lost people with that sentence. That’s OK. We weren’t ever going to be friends anyway. I’m not everyone’s cup of tea. But DAMN do I love the people who appreciate authenticity more than meeting expectations.

Here’s the other thing too: I’m designing and building my own tiny house because I love the idea behind tiny houses, but I think most tiny houses SUCK. I hate them. They’re awful. People cram themselves in these stupid little spaces where they can’t sit up without whacking their heads on things or they have to climb a ladder at night when they have to pee or they have to cook their onions right next to their pillows, and I think, “What a miserable way to live.”

I’m a minimalist. I don’t like having stuff I don’t need. I want to live in as simple a place as I can. So I love the idea behind tiny houses, but I despise most of the tiny houses I’ve seen.

I’m building a house that’s different. I’m building a house I think makes SENSE. It’s USEFUL. It’s SPACIOUS. It’s LIGHT, which means it’s TOWABLE. And it’s INEXPENSIVE.

I’m building this house as myself, so I’m going to write about it in my own voice. If you like it, stick around. If you don’t, leave. It’s a free internet. Nobody’s keeping you here.

If you have thoughts/feedback/advice/criticism, PLEASE say so! I do want/need feedback. Desperately. I know very little about what I’m doing (writing that post next). But if you’re just going to say, “I don’t like you and you suck and your design sucks and the fact that you don’t like other people’s designs sucks,” go make your own damn blog. Mine comes with a “DELETE COMMENT” option, and I’m not afraid to use it.

So hello, and welcome, or goodbye, and good riddance. Either way, I hereby free Link!