The rivets are modeled, not a texture.  Click to enlarge

The rivets are modeled, not a texture.  Click to enlarge

 
Developmental sketch for rivets and hatches.

Developmental sketch for rivets and hatches.

 
The very first concept sketch.

The very first concept sketch.

 

When I'm not designing medical products I like to relax and have a little fun designing and modeling concept vehicles.  This is one of my favorites

We are all familiar with the concept of warbirds, piston driven fighter planes of world war two, built by master craftsmen and women as flying works of destructive art.  They occupied but a brief time in our history before being displaced by the technology of the jet age, but they have left us with a legacy and a form language that will surely live in perpetuity.

What if, in a parallel universe, warbirds never learned to fly?  Instead they carried out furious dog fights and bombing campaigns in vast open spaces relying on speed and agility for protection rather than heavy armor.  Imagine that somebody combined the Army Air Corps with the SAS Desert Rats.  This is the inspiration for the GunShip concept.  You will find a mix of recognizable forms and components that have been extracted, mutated and blended to create a unique yet familiar piece of mechanical fiction.  You may also see some distinct WWI "landship" influence in the mix.

The GunShip is the first concept I've developed using the flightless warbird theme. The vehicle is distinctly American utilizing some very recognizable forms and elements.  What began as a very loose sketch idea has evolved in to a highly detailed and refined vehicle using a combination of CAD generated shapes and sketch overlays to flush out forms and details.

In terms of modeling, this was built in entirely SolidWorks and rendered using Keyshot 3.  I am a huge proponent of Keyshot.  All the visible rivets are actually modeled...  THOUSANDS OF THEM.  None of the detail is a mapped texture.  As mind numbing and painstaking as that sounds the results are justified.  As simple as the forms look there was actually a good bit of complex modeling involved to produce this.

Check back to see the evolution of this project, it's still a work in progress.  There's a great deal of detail to be added.  Be watching for a fully modeled cockpit, landing gear bay, and engine bay along with action shots and possibly some animations.