cement mixers, ball radios, and vegetable steamers, the odd inspirations for the ships of Enterprise episode 23, “fallen heroes”

Episode #23 was a big ship show in the fact that it was a hard one to nail the look that the producers were wanting to see.  We were introducing the Mazarites for the first time and the grand amount of sketches for this one was pretty immense and diverse.  Requested was a solo ship and fairly good size defense/attack ship.  Many of the concepts that were passed on were amongst my favorites, and one of the fun aspects of drawing for Enterprise was that your imagination was always at work trying to come up with new spaceship shapes, even when there were no more original shapes to come up with.  Inspiration on one particular page of ideas came from a vegetable steamer with folding sides, a portable cement mixer,especially the drum, and a round radio I saw at the music store.  All of these ships were goofy in design, to say the least, but fun to turn ordinary devices into galaxy romping spacecraft, HAAAA!  Here are a variety of shapes and concepts for you to see, and they do go off in a bunch of crazy directions…enjoy

the ball radio from the UK

solo ships #1

solo ships #2 the mixer, the ball, and the steamer

awww the good ol portable cement machine, would look mighty fine cutting thru space

the steamer,, very reminiscent of Anderson's UFO from the 60's

solo ships #3

and the approved solo ship

defense/attack ships #1

defense/attack ships #2

the lone vulcan design!

defense/attack ship #3

defense/attack ships #4

heavily armed solo ship

31 Responses to “cement mixers, ball radios, and vegetable steamers, the odd inspirations for the ships of Enterprise episode 23, “fallen heroes””

  1. 1 deg
    April 20, 2010 at 6:24 am

    Awesome, dude! And OMG, remember those ball radios!!! I had a yellow one (of course, like a spherical banana). Those things were the RAGE back in the 70s! What a past from the past! 🙂

    peace & bananas | deg

    • 2 johneaves
      April 20, 2010 at 8:30 am

      I had one too and used to tape it to the handle bars of my bike!

      • 3 machf
        April 30, 2010 at 1:21 pm

        My cousins had one of those radios too… I think the color was tan.
        And my uncle had a pyramid-shaped TV whose top you would flip upwards to watch the screen… I think I once saw one of those in a movie, too.

  2. 4 evil_genius_180
    April 20, 2010 at 6:29 am

    “Fallen Hero” is another good episode of Enterprise. (there are so many of them :))

    Archer: “It’s called a warp 5 engine.”
    Tucker: “Yeah, on paper.”

    I love the episodes that featured “new” aliens (ones that we never saw in the 23rd and 24th century because they were part of the Federation by then.) It gave you guys in the art department an excuse to come up with new and exciting alien ships that we fans could enjoy seeing menacing the Enterprise (or occasionally helping it.) It’s really interesting seeing how you come up with ideas. That radio is kinda fugly but you reworked it into some sweet sketches. The others are really interesting also, particularly the ship inspired by the cement mixer.

    Great stuff as always. Thanks for sharing with us another fascinating story and another batch of great concept art. 🙂

  3. 7 DeanneM
    April 20, 2010 at 8:53 am

    Busy, Busy with finals week approaching, but had to stop in and comment on these absolutely fun designs!! I just love seeing you turn rather boring looking objects into creative and actually imaginable space craft. 😀 I like the caption on the mixer; I can see it now, HA!

    There are several of the designs that are my fav (can’t decided, ahhh!), but the last one just really caught my eye. And the longer I look at it, the more I see a handheld vacuum. 🙂

    Great to see inside your creative mind again (and love seeing the directional arrows on the Vulcan model). You’ll see a new banner after finals. 😉

  4. 9 Terry
    April 20, 2010 at 9:24 am

    Great look at the creative inspirations, I like the last one with the fins on the end of the boom. John can you go anywhere without seeing ships 😀


  5. April 20, 2010 at 9:50 am

    John cool work as always. This reminds me of an exercise we did in ye olde art school daze where we had to take the most boring, mundane and uninteresting thing and then do a dynamic, brilliant and exciting mock ad campaign for it. If I remember correctly my object was a plain ol card board box.

    I kinda like teh cement mixer pod with the landing gear…almost looks like teh inspectiond pod from ENT lil bit.

  6. April 20, 2010 at 11:35 am

    I am amzaed at where you get your idea’s from.
    Love the Number #2, B very cool shape, and so alien.

    • 14 johneaves
      April 20, 2010 at 1:01 pm

      It was funny how your thought patterns can be rigged at the grocery store when your looking at everything as a new ship shape, HAAA!

  7. April 20, 2010 at 12:37 pm

    Ahh, I still have one of those spherical radios, that exact model color and all too! I love the heavily armed solo ship at the bottom, reminds me of the concept for the cop car from Star Trek before it became a bike that you posted. The ball and steamer ships are just impressive designs, I’m very fond of the Ball, oddly designed and shaped ships are needed for space IMHO, a flying ball, a certain large cube, always interested me! Ship A from Defense/Attack ships #1 vaguely reminds me of the Breen.

  8. 17 cubicspace
    April 20, 2010 at 12:45 pm

    love the wacky( assymetrical- non metal/modules hull) ones too…;)
    one has to look to the Filmation Star Trek animated shows to find such inspired designs:)…youd think when the show went cgi ships that some of that “fun” would have been “wanted”…

    they should have used those directions more.:) would have have added a “mod” affect to the show… and made it less “utilitarian”…. and more fun….

    as much of the design in the new trek movie -fed stuff- felt “off” alot of it did have a feel for the mod and fun, that the tos designs all exuded:)

    for those who never saw them, check out the animated trek “world and ship” designs.. some are real gems.. filmgems…lol

    • 18 johneaves
      April 20, 2010 at 12:58 pm

      wow thanks for the note and insight!!! I’ll have to go check this stuff out!!!

      • 19 cubicspace
        April 21, 2010 at 1:08 pm

        wow. you never watched the animated treks when a kid?… 73-4 i think..they were at the time i was just seeing reruns of trek for the first time as a kid.

        oh yeah, some trippy stuff….. some of it “cliche” background animation design form that time frame.. but some of the ships and prop designs…. are just cool and fun.

        really was cutting edge in kids animation for the time…. not till the eighties would kids animation.–getting grown up star wars kids– see better stuff….i think only the anime of japan would offer more complex designs by the late 70s…early 80s…. lensman…. yamato…etc.

        btw- loved the 50s retro illustration of next post.. and yeah that retro scifi publishing episode was one of ds9s best…
        i still think pound for pound- script for script it was the most interesting TREK…

        though i really didnt like the rushed and lazy feeling last season..:(

  9. 20 Richard Knapp
    April 20, 2010 at 3:47 pm

    Wow! Talk about hitting the jackpot. Beautiful work – your creativity is amazing! Thank you for posting these for us, they are very much appreciated.

    Thanks again and best regards,

  10. April 20, 2010 at 4:01 pm

    That’s a whole lotta ships! It’s great that quite a few of these made it to the screen, but a shame that some really good ones didn’t. All the ones in image C are brilliant, but I don’t think any were used?

  11. 24 JNG
    April 20, 2010 at 4:25 pm

    I never liked that they chopped up the Romulan Warbird model to make the Mazarite Alliance ship, and now I know for sure that it isn’t because they were lacking for good ideas. Everything in the Mazarite Concepts picture was strong (and worth revisiting, obviously).

    I guess it is sometimes lucky that Rick Berman did not see some of the interesting and inspirational objects first…

    • 25 johneaves
      April 20, 2010 at 10:09 pm

      IS tahr what was done???? I have the series at home but haven’s watched em yet,,, I’m still full time sponge Bob and Hanna Montana Dad

  12. April 21, 2010 at 2:57 am

    Cool stuff!

    In attack/defense ships #1, “B” is what became the Tandaran ship in “Detained”.

  13. 27 Leon "Melak"
    April 21, 2010 at 5:09 am

    Your artwork is beautiful, and what a variety!

    The mixer, ball and steamer are lovely, but I also like the angular one in that image particularly!

    And “C” from defense ships #1 looks like a mean beast 🙂

  14. 28 Matt Boardman
    April 21, 2010 at 10:19 pm

    Very nice! I always love seeing the things that you get your ship ideas from! It goes to show that it pays to pay attention to the world around you because you never know when inspiration will strike! I really like the solo ship designs! I think any one of them would have made a fantastic ship. 🙂

  15. April 24, 2010 at 8:17 pm

    Hmmm… design B in defense/attack ships 1 reminds me of the weapon from the TNG ep “Arsenal of Freedom”

    As ever, thanks for letting us peep into your mind!

  16. 30 CarlG
    April 25, 2010 at 8:39 am

    They’re all gorgeous, but I love the intricate decorations on defense ship #3. They almost look like something you’d find on the edges of one of those really fancy medieval scrolls. Gives it a slightly luxurious feel that you don’t often seen in Trek designs. 🙂

  17. 31 Captain Rickover
    May 2, 2010 at 6:01 am

    I like the defence and attack ships, especially the big one on the right half of the picture. That’s a really nasty looking ship for some bad guys!

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April 2010

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