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

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Old September 6 2013, 04:46 PM   #106
trevanian
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Re: Photo request -- Enterprise hangar deck studio miniature

Christopher wrote: View Post
Good point. Why use forced perspective for a miniature? That's belt and suspenders. Forced perspective is something you use to reduce the size of the thing you're building so you don't have to use as much space and materials. If you want to do that with a miniature, you just scale the whole miniature down.
Uh, no, the main reason for building a miniature in forced perspective (especially one like this that is shot from one angle) is to get better depth of field. All you need to do is look at most of 2001's moonscapes ... nearly all of the lunar backgrounds are forced perspective, EXTREME forced perspective, in order to carry focus all the way through. With the hangar, and the amount of light needed back then, I'd imagine DoF was a huge concern.

Also your argument for scaling a whole miniature down doesn't really hold given that you get diminishing credibility returns with a smaller model, especially with respect to how big the taking lens is (I mean physically big, not the mm/telephoto aspect, which is a whole other thing.) Unless you do some super job of detailing (opening SW flyby, for instance.)

Best way I can point THIS up is that the 4 ft -D on TNG isn't really big enough to engulf the field of view on a flyby, not the way the TOS model does, and despite motion control and all the other improvements, that just blows the scale for me as surely as if you threw the model in water and saw giant water droplets kicked up. A correctly utilized snorkel lens can overcome this, but it requires a subtle touch (like the nacelle scraping departure from drydock in TMP), and often just results in a close view that doesn't help matters (I'm thinking of some 'tube' views in THE BLACK HOLE ... also of damned near everything in LOGAN'S RUN, though I don't recall what was used to shoot those cityscapes.)

Back on forced perspective miniatures ... many of the landscapes in CLOSE ENCOUNTERS were also built in this fashion.
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Old September 6 2013, 04:52 PM   #107
trevanian
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Re: Photo request -- Enterprise hangar deck studio miniature

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
Maurice wrote: View Post
Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Do you suppose Star Trek The Magazine got these pix from a fan?
Do you believe what you are being told or do you believe what you do see? (to quote from one of my favorite scenes in Chicago).

The close-up shots of the embayments reveal these to be only half as long as the embayments in Richard Datin's pictures (or the one in Allen Asherman's Compendium with a shuttle takeoff).

This begs for explanation.


I don't know where Star Trek The Magazine got these pictures from, but publications are most assuredly not ultimate authorities:
  • ILM-The Art of Special Effects claims that Earth Spacedock, the orbital mushroom (ST III), debuted in ST II. The ILM model builders created the Spacedock, so an ILM book should have known better.
  • The Art of Star Trek claims that Andrew Probert's Ambassador Class (matte) painting of the USS Fearless was actually a pre-production sketch for the Enterprise-D. The Reeves-Stevens should have known better.
  • Star Trek Sketchbook claims that the pressure schematic of the TOS Enterprise ("Day of the Dove") is the one from the bridge alcove (wrong) and wasn't there anymore during the shooting of the last episodes (terribly wrong). As a matter of fact "Turnabout Intruder" featured one of the best views of this Enterprise bridge schematic.
Bob
That ILM book was rewritten from scratch in less than a month, and that ain't the only error, I'm very sure of this. In fact when I still had a copy I had annotated the errors (just as I did for the ART OF book mentioned below.)

Probert told me back in 1997 or 1998 that he supplied THE ART OF STAR TREK with a very specific chronology for all his art, with captions that were totally accurate. He said everything got messed up after that, but pointed to the last STARLOG SPECIAL EFFECTS volume as an example where they actually printed the captions right and got the pictures in the right order.

EDIT ADDON: I had an article printed that had some very embarrassing errors introduced by the editor (identifying a later class ENTERPRISE as the ship featured on STAR TREK VOYAGER, for one), and that was a placed that actually let interviewees check the m.s. prior to publication.

Last edited by trevanian; September 6 2013 at 04:58 PM. Reason: supplemental
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Old September 6 2013, 04:53 PM   #108
Christopher
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Re: Photo request -- Enterprise hangar deck studio miniature

Okay, conceded, there are reasons for building miniatures in forced perspective. Still, it's clear enough just by looking at the exterior of the Enterprise that the hangar is meant to get narrower from fore to aft. Just because something is tapered doesn't automatically mean it's using forced perspective. Sometimes a taper is just a taper.

(Although I'm still annoyed at Franz Joseph for not realizing that the "pipe cathedral" behind the engine-room grille was a forced-perspective set piece.)
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Old September 6 2013, 07:53 PM   #109
Maurice
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Re: Photo request -- Enterprise hangar deck studio miniature

ZapBrannigan wrote: View Post



Not to beat a dead unicorn but for any who still have doubts it's absolutely obvious that those plans are in forced perspective because in the profile all of the lines from the floor, ceiling and observation deck top and bottom converge on the same vanishing point about twice the drawing's width to its right, AND the human figure seen standing next to the shuttle couldn't even stand up in the control booth given the diminishing height of observation deck and the booth as you go from left to right.
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Old September 6 2013, 08:05 PM   #110
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Re: Photo request -- Enterprise hangar deck studio miniature

Maurice wrote: View Post
Not to beat a dead unicorn but for any who still have doubts it's absolutely obvious that those plans are in forced perspective because in the profile all of the lines from the floor, ceiling and observation deck top and bottom converge on the same vanishing point about twice the drawing's width to its right, AND the human figure seen standing next to the shuttle couldn't even stand up in the control booth given the diminishing height of observation deck and the booth as you go from left to right.
Actually, in the paperback, both human figures in that diagram are 7 mm high and the control booth is 8 mm high. A tight fit, perhaps, but would you really expect the operator of a control booth to be standing up?

Also, the fact that both human figures are of identical height when one is at the far forward end and the other is exactly in the middle argues pretty strongly against it being a forced-perspective rendering.

Again, while perspective is clearly a consideration, that does not absolutely prove that the intent was a forced-perspective illusion, not in that sense. As I said, it may have been done more for aesthetic reasons, to fit the viewer's expectations of what the perspective should look like. Which is similar to forced perspective, but the fact remains, if you just look at the outside of the ship, the part of the secondary hull where the shuttlebay goes, you can see that it does, in fact, taper toward the rear in exactly the way the cutaway profile does. I don't see how you can overlook that. If it were forced-perspective, then the intent would be that its walls and roof were exactly parallel, and that clearly contradicts the exterior design of the ship.

Not to mention, again, that the drawing is obviously meant to represent a cutaway of the "real" ship rather than a TV miniature, because it has people in it and the exterior parts that would not have been built on the miniature are shown. Plus there's the scale in feet shown in the lower right corner. Why would there be a scale shown if the sizes of things weren't meant to be consistent from one part of the image to another? Therefore, even with the perspective tricks, it's being presented to us as what the hangar bay "actually" looks like. If the proportions in the fiction are identical to the proportions in reality, that's not forced perspective. It's just a room with a built-in taper.
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Old September 6 2013, 08:53 PM   #111
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Re: Photo request -- Enterprise hangar deck studio miniature

If it is indeed meant to represent the "real" one, then apologies to Mr. Jefferies but it just doesn't make much sense, from the tapering, inclined observation corridors to the too-small control rooms.

Also, the control booth, while tapered, isn't tons shorter than the observation corridors, which we know the true height of, approximately, from "Conscience of the King." So either it's some sort of adjusted perspective or the scale is flat wrong.
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Old September 6 2013, 09:09 PM   #112
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Re: Photo request -- Enterprise hangar deck studio miniature

I still don't agree that the control booth is "too small." I'm thinking of something like the cab in a construction crane -- a little sit-down booth just big enough for one seat and some controls.

As for the discrepancy between the miniature's observation corridors and the one seen in "Conscience," I'd point out that "The Galileo Seven" was made first. So the corridor in "Conscience" was just an approximation, and maybe the corridor was made wider and higher than originally designed for the ease of the camera and lighting. It wouldn't be the first or the last time in Trek that a set was bigger inside than it was intended to be on the outside.

So yeah, sometimes these things don't make sense. Because they're designed for aesthetics and visual effect rather than functionality. There is an element of illusion there, as I've acknowledged, but not necessarily the same illusion being created by a forced-perspective set or miniature.
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Old September 6 2013, 09:19 PM   #113
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Re: Photo request -- Enterprise hangar deck studio miniature

I'll give you the concession about the control cab - but the taper and incline is still silly.
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Old September 6 2013, 11:26 PM   #114
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Re: Photo request -- Enterprise hangar deck studio miniature

^Silly for a working hangar bay, perhaps, but their priority was how it would look to the TV viewer when photographed from the front.

Although come to think of it, maybe I'm splitting hairs a bit. What I'm saying about perspective suggests that they did want to fit the viewers' expectations of what the space would look like if its walls were parallel; it's just that they weren't doing it with the intent of depicting a space whose walls were supposed to be parallel, as with the TOS and TMP engine-room set pieces, but just for the sake of not confusing the eye. So maybe that is forced perspective, but not with the usual intent of forced perspective.
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Old September 7 2013, 12:41 AM   #115
Robert Comsol
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Re: Photo request -- Enterprise hangar deck studio miniature

Christopher wrote: View Post
Although I'm still annoyed at Franz Joseph for not realizing that the "pipe cathedral" behind the engine-room grille was a forced-perspective set piece.
Well, it wouldn't come as a surprise once you assume (what I do) that The Making of Star Trek (with the studio set blueprint and its forced-perspective "cathedral") was all he basically worked with.
His hangar deck observation corridor (with the pairs of triple windows) clearly reveals that either he had never seen the actual shuttlebay VFX footage or didn't notice.

I am unable to see any forced-perspective intentions in the original shuttlebay pictures on the first page of this thread (stern view!).

Also, in the Jefferies side view cross-section both embayments have identical height. But there are elements that suggest a forced-perspective approach. I don't know.

Maybe he started with one premise, then the phone rang, and next he altered it accordingly?

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Old September 7 2013, 01:54 AM   #116
ZapBrannigan
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Re: Photo request -- Enterprise hangar deck studio miniature

Christopher wrote: View Post
So yeah, sometimes these things don't make sense. Because they're designed for aesthetics and visual effect rather than functionality. There is an element of illusion there, as I've acknowledged, but not necessarily the same illusion being created by a forced-perspective set or miniature.

I think that's it. The secondary hull and the engine nacelles all taper. The funny thing is, the tapering is both the "real" shape of the ship and it acts like a forced perspective trick to make the ship look bigger from the front. The Hangar Deck interior is the same way.
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Old September 7 2013, 04:07 AM   #117
neoworx
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Re: Photo request -- Enterprise hangar deck studio miniature

[QUOTE=Maurice;8604913]
ZapBrannigan wrote: View Post
Sorry, Christopher, but everything about those drawings smacks of forced perspective.
The door on the wall at the clamshell is slightly smaller than the one above the shuttle, giving credence the the "forced perspective' argument. Also, the angle of the roof is MUCH greater than it appears on any other drawing of the Engineering Hull of the day. And a forced perspective model would yield the same benefits as shooting it in full scale – whatever you are shooting would appear to be larger.

But why would the drawing be of the model versus the "real" hanger?

Whatever it is, I think they did an excellent job on the shooting model. This was designed to be seen for SECONDS at a time. And VHS or DVD watching was incomprehensible to them. I think it's a tribute to how well they did everything.
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Old September 7 2013, 04:46 AM   #118
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Re: Photo request -- Enterprise hangar deck studio miniature

neoworx wrote: View Post
ZapBrannigan wrote: View Post
Sorry, Christopher, but everything about those drawings smacks of forced perspective.
The door on the wall at the clamshell is slightly smaller than the one above the shuttle, giving credence the the "forced perspective' argument. Also, the angle of the roof is MUCH greater than it appears on any other drawing of the Engineering Hull of the day. And a forced perspective model would yield the same benefits as shooting it in full scale – whatever you are shooting would appear to be larger.

But why would the drawing be of the model versus the "real" hanger?

Whatever it is, I think they did an excellent job on the shooting model. This was designed to be seen for SECONDS at a time. And VHS or DVD watching was incomprehensible to them. I think it's a tribute to how well they did everything.

Hold on, Neoworx: I never wrote the "Sorry, Christopher" sentence. Maurice wrote that (and I disagreed). You must have jumbled up the attributions when you trimmed the quotations.
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Old September 7 2013, 11:40 PM   #119
Maurice
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Re: Photo request -- Enterprise hangar deck studio miniature

Not that I expect to settle this, given the hand-drawn nature of Jefferies plans, but I did a little playing around with the images. Make of them what you will.

First, note that the cutaway of the hangar just doesn't match the ship exterior in terms of how far the doors jut out from the overhang, etc. (EDIT) Basically, that end of the hangar cutaway as drawn is such a mistmatch that it makes it impossible for it to fit correctly into the ship cutaway, though I took my best shots.

Also, the cutaway plan has very thick lines for the decks and the hangar is blacked in, so I centered the floor of the hangar image on the center of the much thicker deck line on the cutaway. (END EDIT)

Comparing the cutaway hangar into Jefferies' cross-section of the ship...





Now to perspective or not...

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Last edited by Maurice; September 8 2013 at 06:53 AM.
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Old September 7 2013, 11:56 PM   #120
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Re: Photo request -- Enterprise hangar deck studio miniature

Interesting diagrams, but I'm not sure about the assumptions you're making. The thing is, the idea behind forced perspective is to make a shorter distance appear longer by tapering the dimensions to create the illusion of converging lines of perspective. But your "perspective corrected" version doesn't make the hangar deck any longer, just higher in back.

Also, I think you're placing the base of the shuttlebay a bit too low, compared to the top of the rear "lip" sticking out beyond the doors. I understand you're aligning it with the interior deck line as drawn, but as you say, that was hand-drawn and that line may have been placed in error. If you scale it to match length and move the whole thing up a bit, so that the deck aligns with the top of the rear protrusion, then it's still an imperfect fit but it comes closer.

What's getting me on the shuttle-bay side view cutaway is how deep the doors are. They stick out much more in that drawing than on the exterior profile, and they seem to stick out much farther than they do on the actual miniature. So let's assume the doors are erroneously drawn in the cutaway. Try lopping them off altogether, just focusing on the bay proper. Then try to scale the rest of the bay to fit the full-ship cutaway. I think it'll come pretty close then.
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