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#1
Vestry

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Anyone have any pointers on generating building shadows that look better than just drop shadows using Arc?

Looking for something like this:

Posted Image

The shadows are being used more for aesthetic purposes so I'm not looking for perfection, just something that creates shadows that connect to building corners. Thanks!

Edited by Vestry, 01 December 2011 - 02:05 AM.


#2
jamierob

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I don't know of any way in Arc to create pseudo-3d effects for buildings, but the new Mapbox app called tilemill is free and has the ability to easily add a 3d building style. The rendering engine that tilemill uses is called mapnik. I used this 3d building effect for an interactive map

Hope that helps. Tilemill can do a lot more as well--definitely worth checking out!

#3
david17tym

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could try this:
http://blogs.esri.co...rop-shadow.aspx

#4
Hans van der Maarel

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The easiest way to do it is still with an offset copy of the building. But there's some ways to improve it I think:
- Flip the shadows around, as if the light was coming from top left (this gives a nicer 3d appearance)
- For increased 'reality', make the size of the shadow depend on the height of the building (if that data is available)
Hans van der Maarel - Cartotalk Editor
Red Geographics
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#5
Dennis McClendon

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Perhaps the easiest way to do it would be with 12 offset copies of the building. Move each one a tiny bit further north and west. This would seem to create the shadow naturally. Unfortunately, it still won't make the shadow longer for a taller building. It's also a big increase in file size, but once it's condensed into rasterized tiles that won't matter any more.
Dennis McClendon, Chicago CartoGraphics
chicagocarto.com

#6
Pete

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Anyone have any pointers on generating building shadows that look better than just drop shadows using Arc?


Are you going to be using only Arc to make these buildings shadows or do you have other graphics software?

I used to make fuzzy boundaries in GIS using the attributes from concentric buffers of features - if you make a buffer of 10 rings spaced 1m apart you can generate a range of numbers from 10 - 100 in a number field by multiplying the [ToBufDist] field by 10. If you apply the values in advanced symbology as transparency then you will get a gradually expanding shape that becomes increasingly transparent as opposed to just getting paler.

Attached File  Untitled_1.gif   21.36KB   20 downloads

I tried to apply the same sort of thing to buildings but it's not perfect. In the example above I made three classes of building based on area and made larger buffers for each class (3 6, and 9m) and then clipped it with a shape made from copy-offsets of the building footprints. It sort of works but it's far from ideal :( - the buffers gradully get bigger (obviously!) so some of the shapes expand into areas they shouldn't but the transparency effect works. I guess if you copy-offset the buildings and calculate transparency values as you go it would look better.




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