This is an Enterprise-era Romulan Bird of Prey for use in the fan film Star Trek: Horizon. In Star Trek: Online, this design is still in service in the 25th Century as the T’Varo-class light warbird, which is the name I’ve been using to identify it. I’m modeling it — as always — in Blender and will pass it along to Horizon’s creator Tommy for use in 3ds Max once finished. My goal is to build it efficiently and relatively quickly, so as to not be a bottleneck in his VFX pipeline.
So far, I’m still just working on the subsurf. There are a ton of imperfections and errors to smooth out still, lots of loop creases to add for edge definition, and so on, but it’s substantially better tonight than it was last night, so I don’t feel nearly as ashamed of posting it at this early stage.
The nacelles are just stubbed in at the moment and proved a far bigger challenge than I expected, due to their off-axis nature. At first, I tried to just model them whole, but the ended up looking lumpy and asymmetrical across their local axis. Ultimately, I hit on the idea to model the nacelle axis-aligned and then instance the geometry as a separate object, rotated into the correct position. This allowed me to mirror the two sides of the nacelle and made modeling it a lot easier. It’s not 100% bang-on to the ortho, but it’s very close. Right now, it’s still a very bare subsurf, with no control edges or anything and continues to be in dire need of surface smoothing, but at least they’re in-place now.
I’m using a nice, big 5-ortho render of the CG model used on Enterprise as my main reference, along with John Eaves’s concept sketches and a few episode screenshots. Having access to the big 5-ortho render is huge and making my entire process a lot easier and straight-forward.