Lots of head-scratching as I get to grips with texturing the Retro Enterprise model – above is the latest render, which now includes a level of detail like panel lines and graphics, some of which need tweaking – I’m deliberately veering towards less detail to retain the sleek retro feel and the panel lines are not really “canon” as far as referencing the original, I’m going more by what feels right for the design from an aesthetic standpoint, so stick with me on that one 🙂
As you can see, I’ve started introducing graphics – again a bit of a departure from the familiar font used for the OS Enterprise and I’ve gone for a serif font – now, I’m sure any experts out there will point out that military vessels never used serif fonts for identification – it’s something you might see on an ocean liner – and in keeping with the nature of the Federation, I guess a san-serif font would be more appropriate, but I’m trying to evoke the romance of pulp sci-fi magazines and a sense of the period in which they flourished, i.e. the 30’s-50’s.
Adding the surface detail has impacted on the quality of the metal shader, but this is something I’m working to fix as I get my head around nodal shaders 🙂 – Additionally the graphics on the nacelles need adjusting. The next stage will be to look at additional surface detail since these add scale – I think this is a perceptual requirement for images which look more “photo-real” – for some reason a degree of artistic license is possible in an impressionistic painting / illustration, where the image is static, which doesn’t seem to work when it’s a 3D render or a physical miniature – there’s also the fact that in space there are no reference points for a comparison of scale.
This will take the form of additional texture mapping to define panelling and variations in the surface characteristics, but again I don’t want to go overboard with this since I want to retain that smooth streamlined look as much as possible.