Rapid protyping & animatics mainly. Blender’s quick rendering engine is great for those tasks to create demos of how scenes will look for client demos.
The model already has textures, they just happen to be in a format that Blender doesn’t read and therefore need to be converted. I am using Photoshop for that. It’s just quicker for me to retexture the thing in lightwave using the current model and just change the textures from the .TIF versions to the .jpg versions and the reimport into Blender. I can do that in an hour, two minutes to import in blender, make any adjustments the import scripts miss, and the next day upload the models for others to use.
I am beyond the spending a month to texture something by hand any more, I just don’t have the extra time. Hell, I had the stormtrooper conversion done since September, I just now had enough time to sit down and upload it and post about it.
Currently I don’t see any SW driod fighter meshes at Blenderwars or the BMR site. I have the tools to make a conversion, so I’m doing it. Most of those models, especially sci-fi ones, for blender are almost all imported from the work others did for programs such as 3D studio Max and Lightwave.
Then on another technical level, I’m exploring the use of Blender with Apple’s Xgrid technology. I maintain the ScreamernetII system at work and we’re a nearly 100% Apple shop (Final Cut Pro), and Blender is one of the few programs out there not developed by Apple that will work with Xgrid. Again, that is more of a hobby project a home between my Powermac and two MacMini’s I use as rendering agents.