This piece is another design project to expand my SciFi portfolio. I haven't designed that many spaceships, other than a few retro looking Buck Rogers-style pieces for personal gratification. I've been trying the trick of making a broad shape silhouette and then carving into that shape with form details. Making a blob of black on a screen can be simple and daunting at the same time. I chose to model my blob off of a Horseshoe Crab or Trilobite, with little feeler legs out front.
I went over to NASA.gov to go through their portfolio of public images, which I used as the basis for my background and surface texture on the ship. I don't think the texture and background took 45 minutes with this comp method. I placed some atmospheric fog over the ship, and the overlaid highlights. This makes for a quick piece that is high on spontaneity and low on fuss.
The image is entirely digital, starting and ending in Adobe Photoshop on the Cintiq. Click the image to enlarge to 1000px wide.