Topography STL in Paint 3D

Open an STL Terrain File in Paint 3D:

  1. Find an STL file
  2. Open the file in Paint 3D
  3. Change the model colour
  4. Adjust lighting
  5. Capture a screenshot

Step 1

Find or create an STL File

In this example, we thought it would be cool to see how Paint 3D could handle a high-resolution STL terrain file extracted from Equator. We picked a couple spots in Ontario to really feature the detailed topography well – Bronte Creek in Oakville, and Highway 407 in Durham.

Bronte Creek STL Terrain Equator

Detailed STL terrain file extracted from the Equator platform

Step 2

Open the STL in Paint 3D

Right click on your file → Open with → Paint 3D

You can zoom in and out on your model using the scroll wheel on a mouse, or using the sider near the top right.

You can rotate around your model using the button directly below the model.

3D terrain in Paint 3D

3D terrain file from Equator, opened in Paint 3D

Step 3

Change the model colour

Click on the Select button in the top left menu, and then click on your model to open the 3D selection menu.

Click on the Edit colour menu to open up the colour palette. Here you can select one of the colour presets, use the dropper icon to match a colour, or click on the + button to fully customize your colour choice.

Paint 3D Colour

Changing the colour of the terrain model in Paint 3D

Step 4

Adjust lighting

Click on the Effects button in the top menu ribbon. Adjust the filter colour and light wheel in the right menu.

Paint 3D Lighting

Changing the lighting and filter in Paint 3D

Step 5

Capture a screenshot

Click on the image icon in the top right, select Take a screenshot. Voila! We added some additional colour, formatting and text using Figma. The final image is picture below.

Paint 3D Terrain Equator Figma