LEGO brand building bricks ™

if you’ve ever bothered browsing through the links to the right of the screen and somehow stumbled into my flickr account, you’ll probably have noticed i kind of have a thing about building with LEGO, specifically with TLG’s (The Lego Group) Lego Digital Designer software. but this particular hobby also happens to intersect regularly with the conceptualization of somewhere in nevada, and LDD works pretty well as a sort-of-CAD program for the more complex thingies i end up plopping down into the SiN universe.

case in point, issue 3’s spaceship and rebuilt limo.

LEGO brand building bricks (tm)

as seen in the image above, building in LDD is just like building in real LEGO, except without the extreme financial strain and like 40% of the fun. Regardless, the final product is incredibly useful to me because I can create full 360 degree models of contraptions and vehicles that would be too complex to freehand in Flash like everything else that goes into the comic. so instead of giving myself carpal tunnel meticulously drawing something like that limo from reference, i can instead just plop down an LDD screenshot onto my timeline and trace over it like so:

this is heavy, doc!

now that looks pretty rad by itself, but it doesn’t quite fit in with the SiN aesthetic. not a problem! all i have to do is remove the LDD layer so it looks comic-ready, like so:

where we're going etc.

and now for some words on the design: the exterior of the newly repaired limo heavily draws on another famous flying time car, the Delorean DMC-12 from the Back to the Future series. back in 2007 (jesus christ), when i was still coming up with the core concepts for SiN, i also dragged myself out of my so-called LEGO “dark age,” and started to seriously get into building things in LDD. my first true creation was what became the first iteration of the reconstructed limousine that team unicorn uses to fly around space and time with, looking a bit different from the current iteration:

SS-138 Gay Deceiver Mk I

even though i’m still quite proud of that design, from a 2011 perspective it just didn’t fit in as well with the current SiN design ethos, so i did a complete redesign to make it more compatible with the spaceship. of course, i’m a slave to nostalgia, so there’s still a lot of visual callbacks to the older design, such as the offset red on black striping, the sharp angular hood, the weird lamp directly above the driver’s side of the windscreen, and the hoverpads.

anyway, you’ll see a lot more of the new limo in the upcoming issue. time to move on to space!

flying red thing

the same process goes for the spaceship, though i did have to wreck it a bit in post for most of issue 3.

going to the space, over the future

zoom, whoosh

like the limo before it, this is also a redesign of an earlier model, this time from 2008. this was redesigned for slightly more practical than aesthetic reasons, first and foremost being that the original was bloody huge. to wit:

AS-503 Darién Gap

in scaling it down for the comic, i also ended up sacrificing all the interior space and play features. fortunately, real-life functionality means zilch in a CAD context so we’re all winners here! you’ll also start seeing this thing heavily featured in upcoming issues, so stay tuned!

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