Saturday 6 June 2020

Voyager behind the scenes: Miniatures, concept art, aliens, props, and more

I've gathered some of the Voyager behind the scenes bits and pieces I've come across lately, for a look behind the scenes on the series. Continue below for a look at starship miniatures, cool concept art, props, alien make-up, and more from the production of Voyager.

This first item is a foam-core mock-up of the USS Voyager miniature, created as a reference for episodes that involved Voyager landing on planet surfaces. This is currently up for sale on Ebay (for quite an ambitious price!); the seller says they obtained it from visual effects supervisor Dan Curry, and has a note describing how it was used:
These models were created by the Voyager Art Department at my request to bring on location and used a line shots where Voyager has landed and is sitting on the ground. It would be impractical to bring the expensive model out of the motion control stage and risk damage. This technique provides an accurate reference for photographing the hero miniature in the studio as well as a temporary composite for the editors to cut into the work print to give a sense of scale to the scene. 

The listing also includes some images of how this was used in the episode The 37s, including an interesting note on how they lit the proper miniature:
Reference shot with foam coremock-up. Temp comp for work print. Final composite. Brown paper was placed under the model when photographing to assure reflected light from below would match that on the actual location.

We can get a glimpse at the proper miniature thanks to David Stipes, who has shared several photos of his working on motion control shots on his website:

We can dip a little further back into the ship's history thanks to concept artist Jim Martin, who has shared several very different concepts for this ship on his website:

Martin's portfolio also includes loads of cool techy concepts for the bridge set:

Martin also worked on several other sets. Here's engineering, the briefing room, crew quarters, and sick bay:

My favourite Voyager piece from Martin though is this striking colour concept for the interior of the Caretaker's Array, which he also illustrated the exterior of:

You should definitely check out Martin's website for more Trek art from other series, and a whole load of other films and series.

Meanwhile, more from David Stipes' website shows us some other alien miniatures; the Maquis, and the Kazon:

Speaking of the Kazon, here's a nice look at some of the first Kazon we met in Caretaker, thanks to make-up artist Michael Key, who shared them on Instagram:

Much further along in Voyager's journey their big bad became a lot bigger and badder: The Borg. A few years ago Janeway's Borg suit from Unimatrix Zero came up for auction from PropStore. I only recently came across this great video showing of the costume, complete with working lights!

PropStore do have one Borg piece from Voyager that is currently available, a head appliance for a generic Borg drone:

Here's a much more obscure alien, an unnamed species seen on a planet controlled by the Mokra Order in the episode Resistance. These images were shared by makeup artist Thomas E. Surprenant, and the actress wearing the make-up Tracee Lee Cocco:

Actor Robert Duncan McNeill (Tom Paris) shared these images of him in make-up as his mutated self, from the warp 10 episode, Threshold:

Also from Robert Duncan McNeill is this cute photo from the holodeck episode Fair Haven.

If you want more wholesome Paris/Kim goodness, you should check out the new Delta Flyers podcast, in which McNeill and Garrett Wang (Harry Kim) are going through the series an episode at a time and chatting about what it was like to make the series - A really insightful listen!

Finally, some props. These also came up for auction, just last year, from PropStore, and while it's too late to buy them, we can still enjoy a really good at them thanks to PropStore's extensive photography of each piece. Check the links to see more of each.

First up a surprising one, a red tricorder! I don't recall I ever noticed before, but this can be found wall mounted in the sickbay set:

They also had a regular tricorder in the auction:

Plus a type two phaser:

But my favourite is a prop I just want for real world use, the wrist-mounted SIMs beacon. I always found scenes with these very memorable and instinctively role-play having my own SIMs beacon whenever I find myself with a torch!

Alas all these props have already sold, but PropStore do have a few other Voyager bits currently available, including some costumes, and a another of those foam-core USS Voyager mock-ups.

For more Star Trek behind the scenes, and work from many other projects, do check out the portfolios of the artists featured:

And for lots more behind the scenes coverage from all of Trek, check out my behind the scenes and concept art tags.

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