Updating the Glory (LEGO Star Trek Stuff)

Planet Earth at night with my Chariot Class Starship

This summer I’ve been doing a lot of work – writing, project formulating, and making. But one needs to incorporate play into the process. Often hanging with my kiddos helps with that, but it’s been horrifically hot recently… so I’ve been in the basement. After taking a year or so off, I’ve gotten back into my LEGOs as a form for creative construction, both in terms of “serious” art and as a means to recharge with play.

Anyway, stick around here if you want to see the latest Star Trek themed ships I’ve made. To see some of the current direction in my artworks, see my Instagram.

Back in 2014, I had been trying to develop a LEGO version of a Chariot Class Starship. Check out the blueprints here, and my old post about the craft. Now, the Chariot Class is a non-canon ship, but it just looks so cool that I wanted to try it out. Finally, I got around to it. This was partly through the influence of my fellow FODS who view The Greatest Generation Podcast. Their encouragement of my embarrassing creations caused me to redouble my efforts. See below.

In the coming days I’ll add a few more of my newer ships to subsequent posts. If you’d like to look back at previous ships I’ve made, see these:

USS Claudius Galenus

USS Abblasen

Chariot Class Starship

I know that my Star Trek nerdiness isn’t appreciated by everyone, but the heart loves what it loves. I recently came upon a fan-based starship design that is really striking and interesting. This is the Chariot Class – click the image to go over to a full post of renderings on the Trekazoid blog. This ship was designed by Chris Reyes and modeled by Howard Day over at Scifi-Meshes and appears to be connected to the USS Excalibur designed by concept artist Ryan Dening (see the Excalibur here). Reyes doesn’t have his own website, but his work is posted widely. Here is his original sketch for the Chariot Class from 2004, and below it a more recent digital model of the craft:



Trekazoid also features some nice renderings of schematics for the ship (version #1, version #2), as well as a master systems display. Cool stuff.

Though I’ve been working on new Lego Star Trek stuff, I’ve not got anything to post right now. But I’ve been so interested in the Chariot Class that I’ve done a few digital drawings of it and thought I’d post them here. They’re a variation on the overall design and very simple. Perhaps I’ll flesh them out with color later. Anyway, here they are:

Screenshot 2014-02-01 15.35.26 Screenshot 2014-02-01 15.36.47These drawings were done using Sketchbook Pro and then vectorized in Adobe Illustrator. Perhaps if my friend Daniel Glosson ever gets tattoos like his brother he could use these designs.

In Which We Sat In Captain Picard’s Chair!

Last Saturday we traveled to the Saint Louis Science Center to see Star Trek: The Exhibition. It was worth it just to sit in Captain Picard‘s chair!

The Center itself is also really interesting – Miranda was enthralled! Here she is looking down on the traffic below through windows in the floor of a bridge…

And here’s how much it would cost to send her into space!

There she is, peeking around the limb of Mars!

It was a super fun family day – and Miranda has been shouting “ENGAGE!” ever since…

“SPACE SHIP!” – Miranda Grace

My daughter loves watching Star Trek: The Next Generation these days.

When we bring up Netflix to watch an episode, she shouts about SPACE SHIP! and DATA! – yep, it’s pretty cute. Here she is looking through my Star Trek “Ships of the Line” book. She always parks on the images of the Enterprise D, naturally.

USS Claudius Galenus (LEGO Star Trek Stuff)

I wanted to try creating an Oberth Class Federation ship and conceived of this one as a refitted/re-purposed version of the classic class of ships that operated in the Star Trek universe from early 2280s through the late 2300s. I see this particular ship (which I’ve christened USS Claudius Galenus after the famous Roman physician) as a modification of the earlier design meant to keep it in service throughout the latter half of the 2300s. Here’s more on the Oberth Class.

Below are some scenes I’ve thrown together – click for larger versions…

In Earth Orbit.

Cruising out of the Saturn System.

In the general environs of the Tarantula Nebula.

You can see more of my Star Trek stuff here:

USS Abblasen

Some Trek drawings here and here.

It’s a generational thing: my daughter looking up to Captain Picard…

Lieutenant Commander Miranda Grace Ballou

Today Miranda got to wear her Star Trek onesie. It’s a blue one – standing for Science Officer for those of you are aren’t in the know. We used the momentous occasion to watch a bit of Star Trek: Generations. Awesome. Here are some pics:

In her Captain’s Chair with the Generations DVD

“That’s Commander Riker. He was just on the holodeck, that’s why he’s dressed up like that!”

She’s already thinking about space!

Next time I’ll teach her all about Data, Miranda-class starships (such as the USS Reliant of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan fame, pictured below), and eventually introduce her to the best captain ever (Picard, obviously).

USS Abblasen (LEGO Star Trek Stuff)

While I realize it’s a little odd for a 33 year old to play with toys and that Star Trek is odd in any case, I have to say that I love them both. One of the things I like to do – especially after a semester of high intensity, intellectually challenging dialogue and investigation – is to break out my LEGOs and work on some space ships… just like i did when I was 9 or 10. It’s a recharge of sorts, and I prescribe creative play to all of my students. Anyway, I just made a new ship. I’ve christened it USS Abblasen after Gottfried Reiche’s famous fanfare. Here are a few shots of it…

Your Favorite Lego Piece

going to warpThere’s an interesting piece over on The Morning News about how families who play with Legos often develop their own vernacular terminology for the specific types of pieces. See it here.

I won’t get too specific, but my favorite bits are the fiddly pieces that let me join the female sides of two pieces together…

DSC05547Seen in these images is a Star Trek-style ship I made of Legos. Rock. Or rather, Clip, Snap.