VIP Anew

Refurbished Officer’s Lounge set for the standard Starfleet frigate.

Phobos_VIP_14bA rebuild of Kevin Riley’s VIP lounge aboard the USS Phobos

The Abbe class will soon get an interior VIP/Officer’s lounge based on Kevin Riley’s Phobos class version.  After I began to play around with his downloaded model some years ago, I rebuilt the lounge from scratch while still following his structural dimensions and overall floor plan .

Phobos_VIP_16Wide angle. Might need to tone down some of the greener leaves.

VIP_Decal-NoFrameFor comparison, Kevin Riley’s lounge, fully realized. Not sure who rendered this or when.

Basically, when I first downloaded his Phobos model it was a conversion for Lightwave by another modeler, since I believe Kevin Riley works in another 3D generating software. The version of Lightwave I was using at the time seemed to have some difficulty loading a few of the assigned textures, especially those in that lounge (no wood surfaces and the large Starfleet delta was a blank). I was virtually ignorant of UV texturing at the time, but I was already in awe of the earliest teaser renders Riley had posted online, revealing those beautifully rich interiors. My renders looked noticeably drab by comparison. Once I decided to fix some of those discrepancies I was experiencing, I intended to make the whole lounge a little more polygon rich, all for the future possibility of rendering some specific interior scenes: views from the inside-out kind of stuff. In addition to modeling all new structures and furniture, I also added some curvature to that back entrance wall and utilized all new textures. But alas, I never finished it, since updating Lightwave eventually corrected any texture gaffs I was experiencing. As a result, I never used any version of that lounge but his with his ship. As for the inside-out endeavors, they fell by the wayside over the years as well, though of course I worked on the shuttle bay, a saucer airlock alcove, and even started work on a more polygon rich botanical garden.

VIP_DecalAnother Riley version render with exterior hull elements contextually in their place.

Phobos_VIP_15Some interior structures will require adjustments.

In some ways it was mostly a practice rehearsal, as I’d end up using most of the new furniture and textures in the officer’s lounge aboard the McCook. The wood textures themselves had resulted from an old online tutorial I flirted with even years earlier, and was originally intended for use within an interior I’d built for my old planetary Starbase scenes. The plants also grew out of a number of online tutorials, and were created for the McCook and the concourse interiors aboard Starstation India. I’ve tried to revisit and improve them over the years, despite my reluctance to dive into “organic” CGI, and it’s kind of fitting to have them all wind up back here in this refurbished lounge.

In addition to several cruise ships I’ve sailed upon, I’ve seen quite a few inspiring versions of the Movie era VIP/Officer’s lounge over the years, mostly from 3D artists I’ve encountered on various message boards. In addition to Kevin Riley’s Phobos and Dennis Bailey’s Enterprise, some of the most memorable examples include (but are certainly not limited to):

  • Donny Versiga, an amazing artist whose rich texturing and game platform approach allow him to do far more amazing interior work than me, with far fewer polygons than I tend to indulge in (his website Rigel 7 Studios is listed on my Blogroll).
  • Ryutaro Yamada, known to many as the brilliant “Fesarius“, a delicious detailer if ever there was one.
  • Pheylan, operating name for an artist on the Foundation boards, who has recently done quite a bit of fantastic “fleet work” creating multiple fan designed ships from the movie era, and adding some of the more visible interiors that standout.
  • Michael Bergström, who has done some beautiful conceptual work imagining movie style sets and some variations thereof,  although I’ve not seen much of his work in some years.

While I consider it all brilliant work that I’d love to emulate, I already have this untapped piece in my collection.  And since it was just different enough from Kevin Riley’s amazing original, I thought it would be good to make use of it for the Abbe class.

I’ve already started softening a few more edges here and there now that I have better software and tools, and have even begun rebuilding a few furniture elements.  I did some work yesterday afternoon trying to fit all of this older interior model into the superstructure of the Abbe class. And after that little bit of fitting and nudging, it is quite clear some of the interior bulkheads will require major adjustment to fit within the much newer hull.  My higher resolution rendering will also force me to tweak some texture settings.

Phobos_VIP_12Older image from the first attempts, maybe 8-9 years old? I really like how the back side of the delta glows against the wooden wall in this one.

Phobos_VIP_13This is where things were essentially abandoned so long ago.

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~ by starstation on March 17, 2014.

4 Responses to “VIP Anew”

  1. That looks awesome. I take it you have a lower poly version for wider ship renders?

    • Thanks. Well, not technically… yet. I only have this version currently, since it was meant to be for the inside-out focus, but I suppose I could kick out a new low poly version if need be. I’ve just been too lazy over the years to do two versions of such things for long and close shots (especially here, since this was really just meant as a higher resolution rebuild of one that was already present in the Phobos). Lord knows I’ve suffered for it when it comes to rendering though. Learned that lesson the hard way. 😉

      • Well, depending on how close you plan to get, you could also just render an image and texture it to a box to use for wide shots. That usually works until you get too terribly close. Then you have the high poly one for that. 🙂 I was just thinking of render times, especially since you said your processor has been straining of late.

  2. Good idea too! 😀

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