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Star Trek - Original Series The one that started it all...

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Old February 10 2013, 03:24 AM   #31
plynch
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Re: White House Petition to Restore/Preserve and Move the Enterprise M

Therin, those are still danged prominent, I'd say. Especially since they were essentially invisible on TV. And reading the documentation in other threads, they were originally quite light even viewed in person, not under full lighting. Be well.
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Old February 10 2013, 03:27 AM   #32
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Re: White House Petition to Restore/Preserve and Move the Enterprise M

Probably no one has researched the ship more than Gary Kerr. If they ever get around to properly restoring it I nominate they gat Gary on the team.
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Old February 10 2013, 03:41 AM   #33
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Re: White House Petition to Restore/Preserve and Move the Enterprise M

I'm reminded so much of the controversy that attended the restoration of the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. Some art historians and experts insisted that the colors had faded and been dulled over the centuries and that restoring it to more vivid hues was a restoration of its original appearance, while others felt the subdued colors were right and disliked the restoration. Just goes to show you can't please everyone.
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Old February 10 2013, 03:46 AM   #34
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Re: White House Petition to Restore/Preserve and Move the Enterprise M

Christopher, just asking, how do you like the gridlines? They look so weird compared to what we saw on TV. And compared to what people who saw it in person report.
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Old February 10 2013, 04:22 AM   #35
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Re: White House Petition to Restore/Preserve and Move the Enterprise M

^If we're talking about a restoration of a historical artifact, then "like" or "dislike" should be a totally irrelevant concern. What matters is accuracy. It does sound like some liberties were taken in Miarecki's restoration, but without accurate documentation, all we can do is extrapolate what the original might have looked like, and any such extrapolation is going to be a judgment call. I think that no matter who did the restoration and how, there would be some fans who insisted they'd gotten it wrong.
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Old February 10 2013, 04:48 AM   #36
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Re: White House Petition to Restore/Preserve and Move the Enterprise M

Christopher wrote: View Post
I'm reminded so much of the controversy that attended the restoration of the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. Some art historians and experts insisted that the colors had faded and been dulled over the centuries and that restoring it to more vivid hues was a restoration of its original appearance, while others felt the subdued colors were right and disliked the restoration. Just goes to show you can't please everyone.
In the case of the Sistine Chapel ceiling, restorers used pure distilled water to clean centuries of dirt and varnish from the frescoes. The used water was constantly tested to make sure that no pigments or materials from Leonardo's time were being removed.

The brighter, flatter images that were revealed looked too cartoon-like to some people, who insisted that the artist must have added "toning" layers of paint for shading and modeling over the fresco base -- layers that were inadvertently scrubbed off during the restoration. There's no historic evidence that Leonardo ever did or intended such a thing.

As for the Enterprise filming model, we know it never had those heavy gridlines and weathering during series production. They're just plain WRONG.
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Old February 10 2013, 11:51 AM   #37
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Re: White House Petition to Restore/Preserve and Move the Enterprise M

scotpens wrote: View Post
Christopher wrote: View Post
I'm reminded so much of the controversy that attended the restoration of the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. Some art historians and experts insisted that the colors had faded and been dulled over the centuries and that restoring it to more vivid hues was a restoration of its original appearance, while others felt the subdued colors were right and disliked the restoration. Just goes to show you can't please everyone.
In the case of the Sistine Chapel ceiling, restorers used pure distilled water to clean centuries of dirt and varnish from the frescoes. The used water was constantly tested to make sure that no pigments or materials from Leonardo's time were being removed.

The brighter, flatter images that were revealed looked too cartoon-like to some people, who insisted that the artist must have added "toning" layers of paint for shading and modeling over the fresco base -- layers that were inadvertently scrubbed off during the restoration. There's no historic evidence that Leonardo ever did or intended such a thing.
You mean Michelangelo, yes?

---

I've seen the model at the National Air and Space Museum twice, but before the restoration and before its move to its present location. Both times, I made a special trip just to see it and was utterly delighted.

I have no comment on the "gridlines" or any other aspect of the restoration, because I'm not familiar enough with the facts.

The mission statement of the National Air and Space Museum can be found at http://airandspace.si.edu/events/pre...rview_nasm.cfm:

National Air and Space Museum wrote:
Mission Statement:
The National Air and Space Museum shall commemorate the national development of aviation and spaceflight, and will educate and inspire the nation by:
  • Preserving and displaying aeronautical and spaceflight equipment and data of historical interest and significance to the progress of aviation and spaceflight
  • Developing educational materials and conducting programs to increase the public's understanding of, and involvement in, the development of aviation and spaceflight
  • Conducting and disseminating new research in the study of aviation and spaceflight and their related technologies.
An objective reading of that mission statement leaves little room for the Enterprise as an exhibit at the museum. The model does not itself represent any actual development in aviation or spaceflight. Although the model might be inspirational to many, the model is not a piece of actual "aeronautical and spaceflight equipment," and, being a model, nor is it mere data of historical, or any other kind of, interest and significance. Considering the model to be educational material is also both a stretch and inappropriate. And, it's certainly not a research project.

The only room I see that could accommodate it in the mission statement is if one considers the model part of a program "to increase the public's understanding of, and involvement in, the development of aviation and spaceflight." However, any such role is surely subordinate to the place that the model has as an artifact of our cultural history. Moreover, the model's function in any such role depends upon how well the model actually motivates future generations to become involved in aviation and spaceflight.

Now, does that mean that the model "doesn't belong" at the museum? Not necessarily. Clearly, Star Trek was inspirational to many present and in past generations, and the public's interest in Star Trek influenced the naming of the Space Shuttle prototype. Those are historical facts, irrespective of how inspiring future generations find Star Trek to be, which arguably provide reason enough for the model to remain at the museum.

Dreaming of flight is a part of the history of human flight. However, I think the museum mission statement should be amended to clearly accommodate the model, as an artifact associated with public interest in space, if it remains.

By the way, I see that there's presently a Transformers exhibit [http://airandspace.si.edu/exhibition...ansformers.cfm]. While that may be appealing or inspirational to current generations, and provide a draw, does that mean that Transformers should remain a permanent part of the museum?
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Old February 10 2013, 12:42 PM   #38
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Re: White House Petition to Restore/Preserve and Move the Enterprise M

CorporalCaptain wrote: View Post
You mean Michelangelo, yes?
Oops. Brain fart.
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Old February 10 2013, 03:59 PM   #39
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Re: White House Petition to Restore/Preserve and Move the Enterprise M

Images exist of the 11 footer before its restorations as well as still shots (not frames from episodes) of what the model looked like during production of both pilots as well as the series. These and other behind-the-scenes shots can be compared directly with what the model looks like now.

Such heavy weathering as well as the exaggerated gridlines (as well as lines added that were never there in the first place) can clearly be seen to have not been there when the model was in its prime. I can't believe this is really being contested. The model as it exists now is an erroneous interpretation of what it once was. I won't say it's a defacement because I don't really think that was the restorer's intent. However, altering signage on the model (even if it was normally hard to see) is a blatant change bordering on vandalism. It's near akin to historical texts being tweaked and altered during translation or restoration simply to suit someone's more contemporary agenda.


Repainting, while certainly time and labour intensive is actually a relatively minor issue here I think. The structure of the model is a bigger issue. Should it be moderately repaired and then put on display with appropriate supports (perhaps plexiglass)? Or should it basically be dismantled and some internal components replaced and/or added to better hold everything together? There is also the issue of replacing previous restoration parts that are clearly inaccurate. Sure these won't be original parts (since the originals were lost long ago), but they would be more accurate to those lost parts than what the replacements that are currently there. Also during reconstruction it should be relatively easy enough to restore the original lighting effects.

This isn't an impossible or even a monumental tasks---old items and artifacts are restored/refurbished/reconstructed all the time. The real issue here is will. Fans obviously think this is important, but the real question is whether those presently responsible for the model can be convinced that it is important as well, important enough to act.
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Old February 10 2013, 04:39 PM   #40
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Re: White House Petition to Restore/Preserve and Move the Enterprise M

For what it's worth I've shared this on Hobbytalk where I also frequent and on Facebook as well. It just so happens that on Facebook I am also friends with Canadian SF author Robert Sawyer (who I've met a number of times---how we became friends) and Robert knows a lot of people in the U.S. in and out of the SF field. I also know he's a huge TOS fan as well as an equally devoted fan of the TOS Enterprise.
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Old February 10 2013, 05:12 PM   #41
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Re: White House Petition to Restore/Preserve and Move the Enterprise M

CorporalCaptain wrote: View Post
By the way, I see that there's presently a Transformers exhibit [http://airandspace.si.edu/exhibition...ansformers.cfm]. While that may be appealing or inspirational to current generations, and provide a draw, does that mean that Transformers should remain a permanent part of the museum?
I don't think that's a valid comparison. The historical context is very different. Star Trek came along at the cusp of the space age. It ended just a month and a half before humans first set foot on the Moon. While there had been at least two prior SFTV shows that had made some effort at scientific accuracy -- Tom Corbett, Space Cadet from 1950-55 and Men into Space from 1959-60 -- Star Trek was the only SFTV show to portray spaceflight in an intelligent and non-cartoony way during the period when crewed spaceflight was becoming a reality. And that put it in a unique and important position, enabling it to resonate and synergize with the real space program in a way that no prior or subsequent SF franchise could match.


Warped9 wrote: View Post
Images exist of the 11 footer before its restorations as well as still shots (not frames from episodes) of what the model looked like during production of both pilots as well as the series. These and other behind-the-scenes shots can be compared directly with what the model looks like now.

Such heavy weathering as well as the exaggerated gridlines (as well as lines added that were never there in the first place) can clearly be seen to have not been there when the model was in its prime. I can't believe this is really being contested.
Everything should be open to critical examination and question. That's just basic rationality. There is no holy gospel here. Truth is found by asking questions and keeping an open mind.

Yes, we have images of the model before its restoration, but under what lighting conditions? It's been said that the stage lighting washed out a lot of the detail. The model in the gift shop is under much gentler lighting. One thing that a lot of people don't understand about film is that the way something looks to the naked eye can be very different from the way it looks in a photograph, due to the nature of the lighting, lenses, film stock, etc. being used. For instance, Kirk's velour tunic in the first two seasons was actually avocado green like his wraparound tunic, but it photographed as gold because of the way the material reflected the bright stage lighting. So we can't assume that the way something looks in a photograph is a reliable representation of how it would look to the naked eye.

Based on the information I've been given, I suspect that the original miniature was somewhat more detailed than it appeared in photos, but less detailed than the Miarecki restoration. But that's just a supposition. I don't know for sure.

So what we need is to move beyond supposition to something more useful. Ideally, this is something that should be tested by experiment. Somebody should make replicas representing various levels of surface detail, photograph them under conditions matching those under which the existing pre-1974 photographs were taken (same lighting, same camera equipment, same film stock and exposure), and see which version most closely matches the available photography. That would help take the guesswork out of it, or at least minimize it. Arguing doesn't resolve anything; experimentation could. There are a number of amateur and pro modelmakers out there who could be recruited to conduct such an experiment. (Or we could suggest it on the Mythbusters fan site. They've done Star Trek myths before.)


However, altering signage on the model (even if it was normally hard to see) is a blatant change bordering on vandalism. It's near akin to historical texts being tweaked and altered during translation or restoration simply to suit someone's more contemporary agenda.
I think that's expressed a bit harshly, but I do agree that alteration is incompatible with the goals of restoration.
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Old February 10 2013, 05:17 PM   #42
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Re: White House Petition to Restore/Preserve and Move the Enterprise M

Christopher wrote: View Post
Based on the information I've been given, I suspect that the original miniature was somewhat more detailed than it appeared in photos, but less detailed than the Miarecki restoration. But that's just a supposition. I don't know for sure.
And that's why we need those who have actually researched the subject in depth.

Christopher wrote: View Post
So what we need is to move beyond supposition to something more useful. Ideally, this is something that should be tested by experiment. Somebody should make replicas representing various levels of surface detail, photograph them under conditions matching those under which the existing pre-1974 photographs were taken (same lighting, same camera equipment, same film stock and exposure), and see which version most closely matches the available photography. That would help take the guesswork out of it, or at least minimize it. Arguing doesn't resolve anything; experimentation could. There are a number of amateur and pro modelmakers out there who could be recruited to conduct such an experiment. (Or we could suggest it on the Mythbusters fan site. They've done Star Trek myths before.)
I can't argue with that.
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Old February 10 2013, 05:20 PM   #43
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Re: White House Petition to Restore/Preserve and Move the Enterprise M

Note, I've just heard back from Robert Sawyer. He is in wholehearted agreement with this petition and has agreed to begin promoting it.
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Old February 10 2013, 05:53 PM   #44
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Re: White House Petition to Restore/Preserve and Move the Enterprise M

Christopher wrote: View Post
CorporalCaptain wrote: View Post
By the way, I see that there's presently a Transformers exhibit [http://airandspace.si.edu/exhibition...ansformers.cfm]. While that may be appealing or inspirational to current generations, and provide a draw, does that mean that Transformers should remain a permanent part of the museum?
I don't think that's a valid comparison. The historical context is very different. Star Trek came along at the cusp of the space age. It ended just a month and a half before humans first set foot on the Moon. While there had been at least two prior SFTV shows that had made some effort at scientific accuracy -- Tom Corbett, Space Cadet from 1950-55 and Men into Space from 1959-60 -- Star Trek was the only SFTV show to portray spaceflight in an intelligent and non-cartoony way during the period when crewed spaceflight was becoming a reality. And that put it in a unique and important position, enabling it to resonate and synergize with the real space program in a way that no prior or subsequent SF franchise could match.
I'd like to clarify my remarks, just so there's no danger of us talking past each other.

I've neither made nor implied a comparison between Star Trek and Transformers or any other franchise. Rather, I've addressed the question of criteria by which either franchise, both, or any other should have their artifacts exhibited at the National Air and Space Museum. Whether artifacts of a franchise should be exhibited at the museum is best determined by evaluating the franchise against the mission of the museum, not by comparing franchises against each other.

Furthermore, as the curators of NASM have already deemed Transformers worthy of an exhibit at the museum, however temporary or permanent, a determination that exhibiting artifacts from that franchise is consistent with their mission, as they see it, has already been made.

The main issue I've addressed is: What is the mission of the museum? If—hypothetically—the mission of the museum includes reaching out to people who find that SF franchises besides Star Trek resonate better to them today, then in that case that's what the mission is.
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Old February 10 2013, 05:59 PM   #45
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Re: White House Petition to Restore/Preserve and Move the Enterprise M

Christopher wrote: View Post
For instance, Kirk's velour tunic in the first two seasons was actually avocado green like his wraparound tunic, but it photographed as gold because of the way the material reflected the bright stage lighting. So we can't assume that the way something looks in a photograph is a reliable representation of how it would look to the naked eye.
Same thing with the monster makeup in the old Universal FRANKENSTEIN movies. Originally, the idea was NOT that the monster was supposed to have green skin. They just used green makeup on Karloff because it photographed as a corpse-like pallor when filmed in black-and-white . . . which fit with the idea that the Monster had been stitched together from pieces of dead bodies.

Somehow, though, the idea that the Monster has green skin crept into the public consciousness, which is why the Monster is painted green on Halloween masks and toys to this day.
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