This may not be the best forum for this...I want to convey to Autodesk my appreciation for Impression 3, and ask that Autodesk continue to support and improve the product in the future - even if that means simply updating it to work with more recent versions of the AutoCAD file format.
I use this product frequently to turn AutoCAD-generated site plans into presentation site plans. Attached is a good example of the source AutoCAD file (easy to draw; note that trees are merely circles) and the resulting site plan produced in about 30 min. in Impression.
Most architects I know do this sort of work in Adobe Photoshop, but that generates enormous 100MB+ files (My Impression file is generally <2MB), it is a slower process, and making revisions is more difficult. I could also do this work in Adobe Illustrator, but Impression's media, fills, effects, and presets are geared more towards architects.
I'm the only architect I know that uses this software - which is probably related to why there has not been a new release in so long. For what it's worth, I'd really like not to lose it.
It's not quite gone yet. Impression 3 is still available to Autodesk Subscription customers as a free download. (subscription.autodesk.com -> product enhancements) I'm just concerned for its future. The only alternatives I know of are the ones I listed in my original post.
It seems really odd that Autodesk has dropped this product when there really appears to be nothing else out there that shares its feature set.
I keep a copy of Impression 3 running just in order to convert drawings to Photoshop format while preserving layers. As far as I know, there is no other way to preserve layer during this process - if you go via PDF they all get flattened. I simply import a DWF or Layout into Impression, apply no styles to it at all, and then save it as Photoshop, preserving layers and choosing the resolution for my illustration. It saves me so much time in Photoshop as I can deal with each layer in turn and mask off very quickly using the original CAD linework as boundaries.
I do also use the wiggle and filling tools (esp watercolour effects) of Impression itself...
I have just about got Impression 3 to run on Windows 8, but I am doubt it will work too many windows versions into the future. Pity.
I just started using it.. althought I have known about it for ever... our office usually (stubbornly) does the cad + trace and scan=raster thing and i watched them do what Impression does.
Ironically i have stuck my neck out (as usual) and convinced them to give it shot.
after all day reading and youtubing.. and then another day test driving...(flys easy enough sometimes a little clunky... heh-thats cool.. hmm etc just drew shapes .fills and explored and flexed the interface kinda tricky to get shadows on trees)
.. I am ready to do my first assignment.
I went to save my experimenting .. and theres a stutter.. progress bar indicates something going on to 100 and then "can not save this file" I close the warning and shows over..Impression just closes.
The file is there.. so i dbl click it to open.. Impression takes a little longer than before to open... and "can not open this file" .. but it opened. I tried to move an object and Impression crashed.
and here I am.
i hadnt even imported a dwg yet.
It really is difficult to impress (pause for bad joke eel..)
my employer when the software glitches out when you go to show him how awesome it is and what can be done.
So yea .for real..autodesk. i know im late to the party but one final patch?
ive had very good results with a well known program for the modeling and Styles-ized linework (and shadows) /water color look
still use PS for post production .. scale is important and difficult with this method . I typically bring the raster final back in to cad for lay out just to be sure of the scale.
new to impresion but im sure scale is a non issue in Impression. as well as titling ..logos all that.
i really want to use impression for 2d site and plan presentation drawings
I agree. I really like this software. We have users using Photoshop and it takes them a good bit of time to update 2D renderings if the CAD files change. Impression is very fast and easy to learn and use.
Here's my latest rendering using Impression.
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