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Old April 12 2009, 05:21 PM   #106
Albertese
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Re: Modified TOS Ent - Wallpapers

I'm tempted to convert one of the PL 1701 kits into one of these. I have an extra 1:1000 to play with, but I'm wondering if it would be practical (for me to store/display) to do it with one of the up coming 1:350 ones. Hmm...

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Old April 13 2009, 07:16 PM   #107
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Re: Modified TOS Ent - Wallpapers

RedSpar wrote: View Post
Top notch renders Vektor. I'm curious did you use a mirrorball to make the HDRI for that driveway shot in Mental Ray? or did you just play with the lighting until you got it right? I plan on trying a composite for my shuttle with a mirrorball soon (gotta find one). From what I have seen it makes composites darn near perfect.
I did not use a mirror ball but I did use a generic mirror ball image I found online that was taken in a similar environment. I would like to experiment with that at some point but for this image I was more concerned with matte/shadow effects. Originally, I was using a geosphere (invisible to camera) with a light emitting environment map but I couldn’t get any shadows to appear on my ground plane. I did some research and found out that Mental Ray does not support GI shadows on matte/shadow objects; there has to be an actual light source to cast them, not just a light emitting texture on a geosphere. This was really annoying as I have become almost totally dedicated to the Mental Ray renderer and this struck me as a pretty huge deficiency. As it turned out, my disappointment was a little premature, but I’ll get to that in a minute.

The alternative is to link an environment map to a skylight, which accomplishes pretty much the same thing as a self-illuminated geosphere but is a lot harder to control. So I reconfigured the scene to work that way and, lo and behold, I still had no shadows on the ground plane! I spent a frustrating day trying to figure out what I was doing wrong and finally realized the matte/shadow material on the ground plane was set to ignore shadows from any objects further than a couple of inches away. The scene was built to scale with the Enterprise model being 14 or 15 feet long and about 5 inches off the ground, so naturally there were no shadows. Once I fixed the distance problem, they showed up just fine.

Now, the latest version of Mental Ray has a new “Matte/Shadow/Reflection (mi)” shader that supersedes the old one, so I got to wondering if it also supported GI shadows. I switched back to the self-illuminated geosphere, making sure my ground plane had the new shader applied and that the shadow distance parameter was set correctly. To my pleasant surprise, the shadows showed up this time, so apparently, MR does support GI shadows on matte/shadow surfaces as of the most recent version or two.

Ptrope wrote: View Post
Okay, that's just f***ing brilliant . You got the lighting perfect.
Well, almost. The exposure level on the ship is a little off from the background plate, which is most obvious where I am superimposed on it and looking a little too bright and crisp. The shadows cast by the ship are also not quite dense enough, and the quick and dirty shadows I Photoshopped onto my legs and on the ship’s hull beneath my hand could use some additional work. Still, not too bad considering I was just messing around with something I’d never tried before.

Spilio wrote: View Post
I don't even have words to express how wonderful your work is. JJ Abrams really should have hired you and not whatever hack put together the new Enterprise.
If you like my version better, fine, I won’t argue with that, but let’s not attack the people who put the new one together. They certainly were not “hacks,” they just had a different idea of what the ship ought to look like.

Albertese wrote: View Post
I'm tempted to convert one of the PL 1701 kits into one of these. I have an extra 1:1000 to play with, but I'm wondering if it would be practical (for me to store/display) to do it with one of the up coming 1:350 ones. Hmm...
Now that would be interesting to see. It would probably require some extensive modifications to do it accurately, though; even though my version has the same proportions as the original, almost every major piece has a slightly different cross-section. The edge of the primary hull is slightly more rounded off and protuberance at the bottom has a sleeker profile. The neck is wider and more of a tapered oval. The secondary hull has a larger diameter and slightly more curved profile at the front. The nacelle struts are thicker, more rounded and angled backward. And the nacelles are probably the most unique of all, much more tapered toward the back and with a slight taper toward the front as well, plus numerous other detail differences. You’re welcome to give it a shot and I would love to see the result. I could probably even provide some 2D schematics for reference. I should point out, however, that I’m technically not finished with the model and I can’t rule out some additional significant modifications.
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Old April 13 2009, 09:25 PM   #108
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Re: Modified TOS Ent - Wallpapers

Vektor wrote: View Post
Spilio wrote: View Post
I don't even have words to express how wonderful your work is. JJ Abrams really should have hired you and not whatever hack put together the new Enterprise.
If you like my version better, fine, I won’t argue with that, but let’s not attack the people who put the new one together. They certainly were not “hacks,” they just had a different idea of what the ship ought to look like.
My apologies, Vektor. I intended my post to be wholly complimentary, and didn't mean to offend you. I regret that the compliment was overshadowed in this way, and will be more mindful of your sensibilities in the future.
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Old April 13 2009, 11:01 PM   #109
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Re: Modified TOS Ent - Wallpapers

No worries, I didn't take any offense. I just think people ought to be able to dislike the design without finding some personal fault with whoever designed it.

We live in a world now where it's not enough to merely disagree with someone, you have to tear them apart, impugn their motives and invalidate them as unworthy of having an opinion in the first place. I think it's wrong and I would prefer not to have my creations used an excuse for it.

I don't mean to single you out and I am not accusing you of doing any of the above. It's just a trend that I think is way out of control, especially online, so I tend to be hypersensitive about it.
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Old April 13 2009, 11:55 PM   #110
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Re: Modified TOS Ent - Wallpapers

^^ Well, I won't say I'm not at fault... I do spend a lot of time in The Neutral Zone. It may be rubbing off
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Old April 14 2009, 02:38 AM   #111
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Re: Modified TOS Ent - Wallpapers

I LOVE the shot of you with your "ride" in the driveway!
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Old April 14 2009, 03:20 AM   #112
Albertese
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Re: Modified TOS Ent - Wallpapers

Vektor wrote: View Post

...

Albertese wrote: View Post
I'm tempted to convert one of the PL 1701 kits into one of these. I have an extra 1:1000 to play with, but I'm wondering if it would be practical (for me to store/display) to do it with one of the up coming 1:350 ones. Hmm...
Now that would be interesting to see. It would probably require some extensive modifications to do it accurately, though; even though my version has the same proportions as the original, almost every major piece has a slightly different cross-section. The edge of the primary hull is slightly more rounded off and protuberance at the bottom has a sleeker profile. The neck is wider and more of a tapered oval. The secondary hull has a larger diameter and slightly more curved profile at the front. The nacelle struts are thicker, more rounded and angled backward. And the nacelles are probably the most unique of all, much more tapered toward the back and with a slight taper toward the front as well, plus numerous other detail differences. You’re welcome to give it a shot and I would love to see the result. I could probably even provide some 2D schematics for reference. I should point out, however, that I’m technically not finished with the model and I can’t rule out some additional significant modifications.

I'd love to try it. I don't think the differences are more then we've gotten used to in fixing the older AMT Enterprises over the years. It'll really just be a fun new project. But you're right, the nacelles would be the hardest part, I bet I'd have to scratchbuild something there. I've been wanting an excuse to try mastering a vaccuum-form mold though and I bet that would be just the project!

But you've got plenty of time to come up with 2D schematics as it'll be a while before I can get to it. My wife and I are expecting our first baby this summer and that's gonna take most my attention for a while. I bet for for quite a while. Months at least. In the meanwhile, the room I have been using for my projects is slated to become the baby's room so I'm planning to build a shed to house my workspace. I'm currently in the planning stages of that project too. hope to get it done before the due date in August. So by the time I can get to any major builds I bet it'll be well into next year. So no rush



--Alex
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Old April 19 2009, 05:31 PM   #113
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Re: Modified TOS Ent - Wallpapers

I am a big collector of Star Trek blueprints and would love to see your 2D images of the most beautiful version of TOS Enterprise that is out there! I love your design Vektor
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Old April 19 2009, 06:53 PM   #114
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Re: Modified TOS Ent - Wallpapers

I've said it before and I'll say it again: Vektor and deg need to collaborate on a video re-enactment of the Battle in the Mutara Nebula from Wrath of Khan, only with their two Enterprise models as the basis for NCC-1701 and NCC-1864!
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Old April 23 2009, 03:49 PM   #115
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Re: Modified TOS Ent - Wallpapers

I'm sorry - I'm really not bashing the new movie, I'm really looking forward to it, and the new ENT design (the "JJprise") has really, really grown on me - but there are times when I think "Oh why couldn't it have looked like Vecktor's version?"
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Old April 24 2009, 05:03 PM   #116
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Re: Modified TOS Ent - Wallpapers

^I know what you mean. I am going into the movie with a completely open mind but I would have loved to have seen this ship on the big screen.
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Old April 27 2009, 10:50 AM   #117
Atavachron
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Re: Modified TOS Ent - Wallpapers

Er, uh... What's all the hoopla? I don't see any amazing pics. Does anyone know where I can see these jaw-droppng picturess?


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Old April 27 2009, 11:15 AM   #118
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Re: Modified TOS Ent - Wallpapers

^It looks like Vektor's site is down.
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Old April 27 2009, 11:19 AM   #119
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Re: Modified TOS Ent - Wallpapers

Atavachron wrote: View Post
Er, uh... What's all the hoopla? I don't see any amazing pics. Does anyone know where I can see these jaw-droppng picturess?


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Old April 27 2009, 05:59 PM   #120
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Re: Modified TOS Ent - Wallpapers

LOL. Well, I guess that's answers the question of how often people are checking my threads. The site just went down late last night.

Speaking of which, my website is undergoing some drastic changes. I am in the process of converting it to a WordPress blog, which required transfer to a new server, and all of the old hosted image files have been temporarily deleted, which is why none of them are showing up in any of my online threads. I will be restoring the hosted files, at least the ones for my active threads, within a day or two.

I'm working some final kinks out of the server configuration and the WordPress software and hope to have it up and running later this morning. Stay tuned.
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