Navigating in a 3D Camera View

Reference Number: KB-00129
Last Modified: July 22, 2020

The information in this article applies to:

Home Designer Professional or Home Designer Architectural or Home Designer Suite


I have created a 3D view but would like to look at the scene from a different angle. How is this done?   


There are a number of ways to edit the perspective of a 3D view.

Note: Not all camera tools displayed in this article are available in every version of the Home Designer programs.

Creating a 3D view

  1. From the menu, select 3D> Create Camera View .

    • In Home Designer Pro, select 3D> Create Perspective View or Create Orthographic View

Each of these 3D views will produce a unique view of your model. Once the model has been created, the views can be changed or manipulated using the keyboard and mouse.

  • The following tools may be available to you:

  • Full Camera - The Full Camera tool creates multi-floor views of the 3D model. It can be used to create interior and exterior perspectives, and is good for displaying cathedral ceilings, roofs, lofts, stairwell openings, and other variations in floor and ceiling levels.

  • Glass House Camera - The Glass House Camera can be used to display the 3D model using semi-transparent surfaces. Different shades of blue are used to represent surfaces and surface edge lines. Lighting is not modeled, and materials are not represented, so neither pattern lines nor textures are used. Glass House View is an excellent way to illustrate the spatial relationships between different areas in the plan. The Glass House Camera actually uses the Glass House Rendering Technique, so in some versions of the software, this tool is not located under the 3D menu, but can be switched to as a Rendering Technique after a view is generated.

You can display a current camera view or an overview as Glass House by selecting 3D> Rendering Techniques> Glass House . To switch back, select 3D> Rendering Techniques> Standard .

  • Perspective Full Overview - The Perspective Full Overview camera creates an exterior view of the entire model, including all floors, ceilings, and the roof.

  • Doll House View - The Doll House View creates a drawing of the current floor with the ceiling removed.

  • Framing Overview - The Framing Overview creates a view of the entire model, displaying only framing and the foundation. Framing overviews include all floors, walls, roof framing and foundations.

  • Wall Elevation* - The Wall Elevation creates an interior view of the wall it's looking towards on the floor it's created on. This tool will not display walls on other floor levels and can only be created looking towards the interior side or surface of a wall.
    *Available in Home Designer Architectural and Home Designer Pro Only.

  • Cross Section/Elevation* - The Cross Section/Elevation view displays all floors of the model. If the view is created outside the structure looking toward it, the result is an exterior elevation. If the view is created inside the structure, or passes through any of the structure, a cross section is created.
    *In Home Designer Suite, this tool is called the Elevation tool and will display all floors of the model if an exterior elevation is created. If an interior view is created using this tool, a single wall on the floor the camera was created on will be displayed instead.

Navigating the view using the keyboard

Using the keyboard, you can zoom in or out, and pan around the 3D model. 

  • To rotate the view left or right, press the left and right arrow keys on the keyboard.

  • To pan in or out, press the F (Forward) or B (Backward) key, or use the up and down arrow keys.

  • To pan up or down, press U (Up) or D (Down).

  • To pan left or right, press L (Left) or R (Right).

Used together, these keys will allow you to create the 3D view of your choice.

Navigating the view using the mouse

Once the 3D model is created the Mouse Orbit Camera child button is selected by default. This tool allows you to move the model up, down, left and right by simply clicking and dragging.

There are three other families of tools available to adjust your 3D views.

  • The Move Camera tools.

  • The Orbit Camera tools.

  • The Tilt Camera tools

For more information about how each of these tools can be used within your Home Designer software program, place your cursor over one of them and press the F1 on your keyboard.