New to the Human Plugin? Here’s the Extra Features You Need to Know

Marc Teer

March 07, 2016

New to the Human Plugin? Here’s the Extra Features You Need to Know

A free tutorial from the Black Spectacles Organization and Working with Data in Grasshopper course.

In this Black Spectacles FREE tutorial, you will learn about some of the extra features in Human as well as how to create custom previews for your model. Human is a plugin that extends Grasshopper's ability to create and reference geometry including lights, blocks, and text objects. It also enables access to information about the active Rhino document, pertaining to materials, layers, linetypes, and other settings. 

This tutorial is part of the Black Spectacles course on Organization and Working with Data in Grasshopper in which you will learn how to utilize Grasshopper in the early stages of your design process to build, modify, and export a model structure. 

View the entire course here: 
Organization and Working with Data in Grasshopper

Extra Features in Human Tutorial

Step1: Exploring additional features in Human

There are many additional features of Human that were not touched on throughout this course. Things like Baking Geometry with Attributes and the ability to create and modify layers directly within Rhino.

If you go to the “Reference” menu, there’s a lot of things that improve the interoperability between Grasshopper and Rhino. There is the “Dynamic Geometry Pipeline” which allows you to be a little more dynamic depending on what characteristic you want to use. You can also “Explode Blocks” in the model and control hatches.  

There is also “Tree Frog,” which is an add-in into Human that allows you to have some additional path control tools. It includes a set of components to aid in the advanced manipulation of data tree structures.

Step 2: Add Black Frames to your House

Next you will create a custom display to add black frames to the house.  Go to the “Display” menu, then to “Custom Preview Materials” to add your preview to the canvas. Plug both of your “Frames” to the “G” in your custom preview. 

Next, copy and paste another color swatch onto your canvas. Choose black as the color, then connect it to the “DC” in your custom preview.

Turn off the red displays of both frames by using “Control – Q.”

You do not want these to be transparent, you just want them to be black so you can leave the “T” plugin on your custom preview empty. And now you have the black frames on the exterior of the house.

Step 3: Create a custom preview for the Columns and Roof

Next you want to create a custom preview for the columns of the house as well as the roof. Go back through your canvas to the preview for the columns, and change the color swatch to black. 

Then go back to your two roof clusters, which are the green group, and plug them into that same black display you used for the columns. Both the roof and columns on your model should now be black.

If you go back to the actual photos of the house, you can see that the edges of the roof are black, but the underside is white. You could go in and customize this even more to create that white underside.

But the purpose of showing you this is that you can create a nice-looking image with just the render settings within Grasshopper. And what’s nice about that is then as opposed to always having to work through your specifics and then do a rendering, you can actually get to a point where you created a nice enough image where you’re just doing a screen capture from the Rhino model. And then you have a quick thing you can print to show outside of the computer.

View the video for this tutorial here:

Finding an architecture job is easy. Getting hired is the hard part.

Read previous post