As we reported earlier in the week, CBS is running a campaign promoting Star Trek: Picard to Television Academy members in hopes of garnering Emmy nominations for the show, which includes social media portions and interviews. We have gathered some tidbits with some of the artists and designers who have been showing off their work and discussing what it takes to make Star Trek: Picard.
Creating a Borg Cube and giant space orchids
Visual effects supervisor Jason Zimmerman spoke to befores and afters about creating the effects for Star Trek: Picard, and the challenge of the Borg Cube, saying, “Whenever you read in a script something like ‘Borg cube’ or ‘Enterprise’, you really do freak out at first.” To get it right, he said the CG team started with how the original miniature models for the Borg looked, adding, “We really wanted to pay homage to what came before us and look at what they had done.”
The article also provides some insider details on how the team faced the unique challenge of creating space orchids:
What helped make the final look for the orchids as interesting and convincing as possible, says Zimmerman, were extra details added by Ghost VFX to make the organic creature feel synthetic and bio-mechanical and to give the flower ‘character’. “A lot of times scale can be told with speed. The slower it is, the larger it feels. We definitely utilized that a lot in those sequences.”
They also have some video visual effects breakdowns, like in this scene where the orchids attack the Borg Cube.
Making Mr. Vup
CBS released a video on Twitter about creating the new alien Mr. Vup, the reptiloid alien from Beta Annari. It highlights the work of creature designer Neville Page, prosthetic designer Vincent Van Dyke, and makeup supervisor James MacKinnon.
— Star Trek on CBS All Access (@startrekcbs) May 8, 2020
Creating Ten Forward to the ‘Dataverse’
Production designer Todd Cherniawsky talked to Gold Derby about how his approach for creating the look for the sets and world of Star Trek: Picard was tied into Star Trek: The Next Generation, saying his “jumping-off point for Picard visually was without a doubt examining Herman Zimmerman‘s production design work on TNG.” When describing how Picard was “bookended” by scenes between Picard and Data in the first and last episodes, he went into more detail about drawing from TNG and creating something new:
That opening dream and the final “Dataverse” virtual reality space were easily two of my favorite scenes to do and work on. In the case of the first one, you are revisiting one of the great sets of TNG. Being able to recreate even just a small portion of Ten Forward was fantastic. Lisa Alkofer our decorator got a chance to rebuild those tables and chairs. Having that opportunity to draw that set up and build even a corner of it was not only fantastic for us, but to watch Patrick Stewart and the rest of the cast show up and see that set was quite a treat.
For the Dataverse, that was one of those moments where you read the sequence and it just read as “Dataverse.” Of course my mind went to the traditional light void undefined space. Then does it make more sense to go dark? And then you realize it has to be the creation of something. It became very clear what made sense was to do a monochromatic version of the study from Picard’s chateau, which carried on through the season as a virtual space in the holodeck on La Sirena. So, to find the right pulse Iain McFadyen, my supervising art director, first came up with direction, first suggesting we just paint it all white. The more we thought about it, we realized it had an overtone with Data himself, so we went with a sort of gunmetal silver aluminized metallic paint, and duplicated all the expensive items on set.
Keep up with all the Star Trek: Picard news, reviews, and analysis at TrekMovie.com.