• John Matthews

Thunderchiefs! An F-105 Thunderchief Work-in-Progress

Updated: Mar 22

Hi folks! Hope this finds everyone out there in good health and spirits as we roll into the weekend.

After the Lockheed L-133 and Martin’s XB-51, I think the third 3D model I made was a Republic F-105D Thunderchief. But, aside from using it for some commissioned profiles, using it to learn more about creating textures, and as a subject to drop into a scene while I learned more about lighting, creating landscapes, and clouds, it struck me that I’ve never actually set the Thud into a completed and published scene. High time to change that!

Republic F-105D Thunderchief Formation
A formation of F-105D Thunderchiefs

“Before the Thunder” is the working title for this piece. To compose this scene I cloned the flight lead three times. They’re climbing through about 8,000 feet here, above lower cumulus clouds and the terrain below.

I’ve used the USAF Southeast Asia camouflage tech order (TO) as a reference for the paint scheme, but paint on a couple of the planes will be changed a bit to make their uniformity, well, a bit less uniform. Using different tail numbers, weathering, and other markings, these will look like four different planes from the same squadron, not just four clones.

I’ll be working on the atmosphere and terrain next. I’ll re-scale the clouds so they aren’t “speckled,” and place a river, streams, paths, and some dirt roads to add more visual appeal. So, stay tuned for updates this weekend.

I'm still working on the B-52 project. I’ve taken the engine pods and cleaned-up the model quite a bit. Some parts of the engine pod have been a challenge to map correctly for textures/paint. Just a matter of getting everything to lay nice and flat in 2D space, which I’m taking my time on so it’s done right, and without distortions.

That‘s all the news from the pixelworks today. I’ll update over the weekend with progress on the F-105 scene and the B-52 model. Until then...

Safe skies,


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