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WIP - Pennsylvania Station (sort of)


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The ALT snap bias aim feature is such a pleasure to use, I've regained my enthusiasm for an architectural  model I set aside in 2009. It's my version of a Hollywood set of the grand old Pennsylvania Station built in New York in 1910 and demolished in 1963. I'm calling it a Hollywood version for three reasons.

1. Since my reference images from books and the Net only have a few readable dimensions I have to make a lot of "looks good to me" guesses.

2. The amount of detailing required for a 100% accurate copy is too staggering so I've simplified it while trying maintain a similar look.

3. The section of the building where people board a train is called the Concourse. While it was a spectacular work of architecture, it was essentially a large room where passengers would congregate before descending down stairs to tunnels in the lowest level to board coaches pulled by electric locomotives. To me that's a subway station not a rail station. So my Concourse will be a complete fiction but it will have steam locomotives.

Here's four views of the real thing.

Penn_Station_collage.jpg

 

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Keep in mind that this is a WIP and I have a long way to go (including getting the lighting right but I'm still pleased with the result.

Here's two views of my arcade taken from the street entrance end and showing the concourse archway in the distance.

Penn_station_000.jpg

 

 

 

Penn_station_001.jpg

 

 

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  • 2 months later...

I've practically spent the last quarter of 2021 on the arched concourse that can be seen through the archway in the last image. As I said at the beginning of this thread, the real N.Y. Penn Station concourse was an elaborate waiting room for travelers using the stairways to the trains in basement tunnels.

concourse_WIP_example.jpg

Great architecture but I wanted something more along the line of what the Pennsylvania Railroad built in Pittsburgh, a large train shed.

train_shed_WIP_example.jpg

Basically a structure built to accommodate multiple, entire passenger trains. But I couldn't imagine the amount of my time and computer RAM it would take to model that intricate array of beams and girders so I decided to go with a complete fantasy design of riveted box arches.

Penn_station_005.jpg

This design means far fewer patches and the rivets and stamped patterns can be faked using normal maps.

Penn_station_006.jpg

And here's a short camera move shooting inside, near a painfully under-modeled lounge/observation car which is here mostly to give a sense of the scale of the building.

 

I'm beginning to get the feeling that I may never get to the end of the line on this project but I'm having a blast during the trip.

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  • 1 month later...

Now that I've finally optimized the settings for klieg lights as window skylights, I'm getting closer to having an interior light level that's believable. I'm still tweaking intensities to get good exposure levels from full sun to inside the archway but this is an improvement on the lighting in the Oct. 1 image of this arch since we can now see the spill light from the concourse beyond the doors.

Penn_station_007.jpg

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