The Art of Star Trek: Discovery, written by experienced Trek writers Paula M. Block and Terry J. Erdmann, looks to be an extremely exciting collection. It’s a coffee table book full of the show’s concept art and design work, with interviews from the creators and a huge dose of behind-the-scenes information.
In a preview on Trek Movie, the creators offer a glimpse of some of the stunning art in the book and discuss the process behind putting it together. According to Erdmann and Block, the refrain uniting the creators in their work on Discovery was passion, and a desire to be true to what Star Trek is as a universe and a story.
“Everyone we interviewed is just a die-hard Star Trek fan,” Erdmann told Trek Movie. “They’re so proud of being part of it. And they’re deeply hoping that they’re doing the right thing for Star Trek, for they love the entirety of the franchise.”
“In other words, they’re really into it,” Block said. “And we were surprised, because just about everybody we talked to said, ‘I want to make this right. Yeah, we’re making a phaser, and, yeah, we could do anything we want to at this point, because technology is advanced so much beyond the sixties when the original show was made. But we want it to look like that.’”
As Block and Erdmann describe it, much of the artistic process behind the show is a matter of reverse engineering, looking at existing canon, reducing it down to its basic elements, and going from there. Even though sometimes the show’s choices can be controversial, it’s clear, according to Block and Erdmann, that it comes from a place of deep dedication to the series.
As for the book itself, the author duo, who have written several Star Trek books, found themselves with a unique challenge. Whereas finding archival art for older Trek eras was typically challenging, they had the opposite problem with Discovery—CBS had everything, and gave them full access. There was literally too much art to pick from.
“They found everybody for us,” Erdmann said. “On many of our books, Paula has gotten deep into searching for art – the Smithsonian Institute or the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences library or TV Guide, all kinds of places like that – looking for artwork because the studio doesn’t have it. But on this, because it’s going on right now, the artwork was available, and there was way too much of it.”
“They gave us access to this library and let us take anything we wanted from it,” added Block. “As a result, I ended up having to buy more space for my computer because it kept saying ‘too much, too much.’ And it just wasn’t ready for that many gigabytes.”
To check out some of that fabulous art, go on over to Trek Movie to read their full preview piece. And get ready, because The Art of Star Trek: Discovery is available December 8th.
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