|Posted: 16 June 2010 at 9:00pm | IP Logged | 10
Been working steadily on my 1701-A, to kill the time while I wait for the decals to arrive.
I have a tendency to be impatient with these things, primarily when it comes to painting--the step I like the least.
That aside, this is a great little model.
It's very interesting to set it (even in its unfinished condition) alongside my finished "Cage" Enterprise and compare the two designs. Comparing schematics is one thing, but having two 3-D models in the same scale is something else. It's gotten me thinking about the two designs, and how they evolved.
The redesign of the Enterprise for ST: TMP went through several steps:
1. The Ralph MacQuarrie "Star Destroyer-prise" designs from the aborted PLANET OF THE TITANS movie, which were totally scrapped.
2. Matt Jefferies was then brought back to redesign the ship for the PHASE II television series.
Even in his 1960s artwork, Jefferies was never beholden to the exact contours of his own prior drawings or the TOS filming models. As such, his Enterprise was always somewhat in flux.
The PHASE II design stays in line with that. Jefferies figured that only the engines and pylons would be the only major components to change during a refit. Otherwise, the changes he made were mostly cosmetic (like visible docking ports on the secondary hull and the torpedo tubes at the base of the dorsal). The other countour changes were merely a bit of artistic license on his part.
And, of course, work began on a model, which was scrapped when the second TV series was abandoned.
3. When work began on ST: TMP, other artists revised Jefferies' design, primarily by reworking the details--the overall shape of the redesign remained mostly the same. And, of course, a ton of extra detailing was added, including the gorgeous and complex aztec pattern. It was also around this time when art started creeping up behind the functionality of TREK's designs--and functionality would eventually be superceded in favor of flashy, superdetailed ships.
The 8-foot model was built by Magicam, and the earliest finished version featured additional red pinstriping, some different markings, and simpler bridge/lower sensor array designs. This version was used for numerous publicity photos, the comic adaptation, and toys.
The model was revised into its finished form when Doug Trumbull came aboard and devised the model's self-illuminating spotlights.
Anyhoo, I kinda wish the PHASE II model had been completed, since it's an interesting transitional step between TOS and TMP.
And, comparing my models, I do think it's more than conceivable that the "refit" is still the same ship from TOS. While many of the countours are different, it's easy to say that certain areas were "beefed up" structurally, while others were completely replaced. Comparing the two, some lines of the dorsal, secondary hull, and saucer are very close--enough to say that a good portion of the ship's spaceframe could have been retained and/or enhanced during the rebuild.
Additionally, the seemingly high level of surface detail comes primarily from the aztec panel pattern and the markings. If one were to paint the model a single color, and used markings similar to TOS, I think the ship's basic design and skin texture would be revealed as not quite so "busy" as some people think--unlike the later iterations, which are bursting with extraneous greeblies. I think the refit's design carries the same overall spirit as the original ship--sleek and fairly simple--, something that can't be said about later versions.
Sorry for the stream-of-consciousness ranting...I'm just pumped about how well this new project is going!