Steampunk Airship Destroyer

Perhaps “destroyer airship” would be a more apt title :wink:

I just started this a few days ago, was simply a doodle at work though now I’m pretty set on finishing it. I hope to have alot of the smaller details made out, such as the pieces parts that keep the ship running (that you can see from the outside) and most of the crew oriented necessities (ladders, doors, windows, external stairwells, barrels, sandbags, guns, etc. etc.)

This was my design phase… I tend to continue making changes to my models as I go, hence alot of open-ness to it. As you can already tell I dropped the rear thrusters for much smaller stabalizers, and I have forgone several of the ginormous front facing guns, since one ridiculously large gun is quite enough XD

Does anyone know what causes those black squares in my 2nd render? they seem to be tied into the Environmental lighting, since if I turn that off they disappear…

CC is always welcome, and any ideas you guys have for improvements / modifications to the ship itself are also welcome. As in the title though I am aiming for a more steampunk feel, so in the end there will be more pipes / boiler bits and gears.

(Credit to Swami Stream on Flickr for sharing such an awesome bg!)

Hi, good start, can turn really well :smiley:
For your black dots, I had a similar problem with yafaray few time ago.
It seemed to me that replacing the HDR env map by an EXR one solved the problem.
Good luck :smiley:

Thank you, although I am using Blender’s internal, not Yafaray. May be a similar problem though so I’ll try converting to exr when I get home :wink:

Ok, well the black spot problem is DEFINITELY linked to images used for environmental lighting. Tried EXR, no different. So now I’m just using the sun sky script, I think this is slightly closer to what the background images conditions were.
Modeling wise I didn’t do a whole lot, getting ready to start on some greebles on the guns and get those rear stabilizers looking cool.


Wow, good job, it looks even cooler!
I like the new openings at the front…
You should just soften your shadows, even if it’s still a wip shot :wink:

shadows are already soft.

How were you planning on making it into a “steampunk” airship? At the moment it is much more reminescent of something out of a diesel punk or cyberpunk type of universe (The most notable giveaway is the curious lack of any type of flotation device aka, a giant ass balloon hovering over this thing)

There can still be a big ass balloon on top of that, just need to make some mounts and ties going to it. It’s looking really nice so far. Is there any way you can increase the detail in the viewports, there were dark in your first image, then it looks like you closed them up and they lost a lot of impact.

Here’s the latest update - alot of steam inspired greebles on the guns, several quick materials and an area light to soften up some of the shadows. I have the samples pretty low since render time is already 7 minutes and I’m not a fan of waiting to see my work XD

As for making it steampunk, I was thinking more of Last Exile, which I guess is more diesel like (though it’s considered steampunk) The guns and such are mostly steam powered… I am stealing Last Exile’s idea of “Claudia” as the flotation material. so no big balloons… (though that has piqued my interest abit now… might make a version with a balloon just to see what it’d look like :wink: )


In the blueprint(??) I can see a ladder of sorts. Look forward to you implementing these if my eyesight/imagination is acute.

Ahh, yes in the blueprint there are alot of little things I threw in to get the scale in my mind, and I intend on including all of them and much more in the final ^.^

Here’s my latest work, I haven’t been home so I’ve just been running blender offa thumb drive, couldn’t do any high poly work so I worked on abunch of the little steam inspired greebles. Will get started on adding more windows, the doors and ladders and walkways soon.

I didn’t composite the bg in this time, having some issues regarding that. I also included some beauty shots of the deck guns, so you can see their awe inspiring size and power!!!


Is this supposed to be in the water, or a flying ship? Cuz i think it will better on water. But cool stuff dude!

I must say that watching this project come together reminds me fondly of the movie “Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow”… a rather charming lil cult classic.

Check out Angie Jolie as Frankie… hubba :smiley:

Anyway… this project calls to mind the huge rotary power aircraft carriers from that movie… the Manta stations:

and if you feel inclined to make one…here is blueprint:

Keep up the great work! Look forward to seeing more of your progress :slight_smile:


DDD - I’m aiming for this to be up in the clouds, and once I get to adding the belly turrets and such it’ll look more like that’s where it belongs

Cujo- THANK YOU! I’ve been looking around for a good ref image of a flying ship’s underside and you’ve just given me a perfect one :smiley: I can’t promise I’ll get around to modeling the carrier from Sky Captain, but the images you provided will definitely help me continue my current model! you deserve a cookie

Now for the last render for the night, and a heads up that I probably won’t be home at all this weekend to work on this. I added abunch of small stuffs - doors, more windows, walk-ways, small aa guns.


Back from a rather long weekend, managed to add a few things. Now it’s looking more like the sky’s where it belongs :wink:

Ahh, just realized some of the edge loops I through in for the new side cannons messed up the circle openings for the big exhaust pipes X.x need to fix that when I get home


really loving the progress on this one, keep it up!

now you need some clouds i the background :slight_smile:
heres a nice way of doing it.

Update! haven’t been home much all week. I got alot of work done, though fairly little on the actual ship. As you can see just some materials and a basic color scheme, (camo based on a mix of wwii destroyer camoflauge and a neat looking aircraft color scheme, will probably take alot of the contrast out next time I render)
I also had this idea of the ship at dock for awhile, and the dock being atop this giant plateau / cliff. So this is the base of what will eventually become a military outpost.
Natholas : Yes I intend to add clouds, I was thinking of doing something like Andrew Price over at, using the new volumetrics though :slight_smile:
Hopefully I’ll get abit more done on this with the long weekend coming up!


This is a good result for such a primitive mesh base. It looks like an anime or cartoon ‘bad guy’ craft. It holds a scale of a minature though, due to no details on deck such as people and cartons of ammo as well as lack of metal/wear/tiles/rivets texture. Which may not be what you are aiming for :slight_smile:
The intack on the two twin side sections seems a little out of style to the rest of the model. The + shaped intake violates the shapes of the rest. I would suggest going with some soley vertical or soley horizontal openings. Just a suggestion. Nice work.

Keith: Thanks, though the rivets would be abit to small to incorporate, I tried to add in some metal pieces similar to the way metal tiles are placed on real military craft… needs some tweaking though (mostly needs UV mapped so the procedurals don’t get totally wonky like they do) and just some scale tweaking and such. I also do intend to include people and ammo crates and such :slight_smile: