Wednesday 22 August 2018

Behind the scenes ship bits: Disco Klingons, K't'inga and Bajoran miniatures, DS9 art, and more

I've gathered some of the behind the scenes Star Trek starship design bits and pieces to hit the web recently, to enjoy a look at what goes in to bringing starships beloved and obscure to screen. Today's assemblage includes close looks at the K't'inga class and Bajoran transport filming miniatures, loads of DS9 concept art, and some Voyager and TNG bits too. But first, lets check out the very newest stuff, fresh from Discovery.

Discovery concept artist Samuel Michlap has shared several pieces of his work on his ArtStation profile. Those include pieces giving a good look at the Klingon obelisk from the very start of the series, both in its inactive mode, and deployed to light-up, with the latter showing a particularly elaborate design.

Michlap has also shared some of the very different takes on Klingon ship designs he worked on. As you can see lots of different approaches were considered, and versions of some of these did make it into the Klingon fleet in the end.

Another artist who worked on the show, Bartol Rendulic, also shared some of his own Klingon concepts, which give us a pointy take on the more familiar Klingon form.

And the final piece from Michlap here, a beautiful illustration of the sarcophagus ship, also uses the familiar basic layout of Klingon ships of the past; albeit far more elaborately detailed. I wish they'd kept the colours being proposed here in the final design!

To contrast, Star Trek production artist John Eaves shared a fantastic gallery of photos of the original K't'inga class model on his Facebook page. These were shot by Michael Middleton, the photographer for FX company Apogee, who worked on Star Trek: The Motion Picture. Below are some of my favourite shots of the iconic design, but you can see even more on Facebook, to really take in every tiny detail of the miniature.

Another miniature is currently up for auction, Prop Store list this as the Husnock Ship, although it was modified several times since the model was introduced for that species, and I think in its current form would be better seen as a Bajoran Transport (Ex Astris Scientia has a typically detailed breakdown of the many times redressed model's history is you're curious). Whatever you want to call it, Prop Stores have a great set of photos of this model, which I've picked a few of my favourite of here:

Bajoran ships have also featured in Roddenberry's recent series of social media posts celebrating DS9's 25th anniversary. I think these first few are all Bajoran small craft of some sort (although Roddenberry seem very resistant to every captioning these posts!):

Perhaps even cooler are some of the really exotic early ideas for the USS Defiant, or USS Valiant (one to add to Eaglemoss' concept series maybe?). Some of what Roddenberry is posting has been seen before in things like The Art of Star Trek book, but others are new to me at least.

Here's a little cloaking device, or maybe what became the self replicating mines?

And DS9 itself, inside and out.

It's not all ships and stations, Roddenberry are also posting artwork for DS9's costumes and props; have a hunt through their Facebook photos to check out some of the other posts (and more are still to come).

A little awkwardly they've also posted some Voyager artwork among this stuff. Love that could-have-been bridge!

Also looking back to Voyager's early days recently is Rick Sternbach, who uncovered a new photo of his study model for the pre-curvy Voyager design (which Eaglemoss just recently brought to life as a model).

Also from Sternbach's archives is this cool photo of the study model of Ten Forward, which comes with a nice story of how that set came to be:

Here's a random pic of the foamcore model of Ten Forward that we did after TNG season 1 wrapped. A few of us stuck around over hiatus and worked up the model based on the ideas from Herman Zimmerman and his army of set designers. We bought a handful of cheap pocket mirrors to cap off the sides of the model to validate the idea of using mirrors on the full size set, to create the illusion of more set. It worked. We also built a scale periscope with a camera height of four feet to look around inside the model. Jonathan Frakes came up to the art department to see what we were up to, looked through the periscope, and let out an excited Holy (expletive deleted). Yes! :D

If you enjoyed this post, check out my concept art and behind the scenes tags for lots more coverage along the same lines.

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