Hello Thomas and Katie,
I just wanted to say I appreciate the both of you presenting me this client-based project for Star Trek and Richard Picardo. I may not have come into this class knowledgeable, or a fan of Star Trek, however I can say that now I am a fan after creating this project! In this small letter, I want to tell you how I got the inspiration for this project, how the process went, and what I want to work on for future prints.
When first presenting to the class I wanted to do something with the ship, I wanted to do a moment in time trapped in a sculpture, then later I was given the push of doing something like a memorial for a crashed Enterprise. The more I researched the more far away from the subject I got, so my focus went on creatures of the Star Trek universe and my eye went to the Hengrauggi (AKA Big Red) from the movie. I did not know this at the time, but Big Red was actually designed by one of my favorite creature designers named Neville Page. His other creations also include the creatures from Avatar, the Cloverfield monster along with the other creatures, and he did more work from the Star Trek movie. In combination of this I believe being around statues that are made for video games in a video gaming store, a lot of inspiration came from making the figure.
The first thing I started out with was the human form. I didn’t know the easiest way to start this, so I looked up how to manipulate a “T” pose in Meshmixer, but I found out an easier way to manipulate a 3D model is to go into Maya, it has a skeleton feature that lets you move a human body by its joints. Once I got the figure into the position I really liked I exported it as an obj file, and uploaded it to Meshmixer and sculpted the figure to have a face, have clothes, and boots. I then found a phaser obj file on a website called GradCAD. I made the rock out of two shapes that were in Meshmixer and worked on making them as organic as I could. I then started adding shapes on the other side of the rock for Big Red. Once I had all the shapes in the right spots I sculpted the body inside and out. Big Red might be my personal favorite thing to really look at on this small sculpture. I had so much fun building the muscle, the fat, and the ligaments of the creature. A big process I also wanted to mention is that the first 3D print ended up breaking, and I had to remake another one.
The next thing I plan for this project is to make Big Red and the “Kirk” figure detachable from the rock formation. I want to detach them so people can pick them up and look at them, and it would make painting the figure so much easier on me personally. Which painting the figure properly is the next thing I want to do. I used cheap acrylic paint for people to get an idea of how the figure is imagined in my head. I definitely want to get better paint, and not just paint them but also airbrushing the figure would be good. I do want to dedicate time to make every piece look exactly like it should, sand each piece, paint each piece, maybe even gloss Big Red, because in the pictures I was using as reference he is shiny or wet.
It was already a huge honor to be presented this project, and I will be even more honored to have been chosen to recreate my project that I have been working very hard on. I did pour my heart and soul into this project. If I may, and this opportunity is to come up again, I would be more than happy to work on something like this.
Thank you so much,