The Iconian Heralds came from the idea that Iconia had at least two native sentient species. One of them is what we today call Iconians, highly evolved both physically and mentally. And then there was a less evolved race now known simply as the Heralds that serves as personal bodyguards and servants for the Iconians. Keeping that in mind when we started creating the Heralds, we didn't want to stray too far away from what we already know about the Iconians and their physiology. Iconians have slender bodies, three-fingered hands and most notably, an elongated face with three pairs of eyes instead of the usual single pair that most known Star Trek aliens bear. The Heralds have similar physical attributes to the Iconians, as if they are to the Iconians what apes are to humans.
“Fantasy is the impossible made probable. Science Fiction is the improbable made possible.”
All Iconian technology comes from the premise that eventually any advanced enough tech would be too much for most people to understand. For a layman, it might as well be magic.
In the Kardashev scale, Iconians are a type-two civilization, capable of harnessing the full power of a star. Everything about both Iconians and Heralds seems out of place in Star Trek, as it should be. The universe is infinite, and so is the possibility that a race like the Iconians and/or Heralds might exist. For us, a race like that might as well be a race of gods. One can only imagine their logic and societies (if those even apply) and we can be sure it won’t fit any preconception we have today about what alien societies might look like.
Based in several culture behaviors here on planet Earth, we extrapolated that the Heralds would want to look as much possible as the Iconians, whom they revere as gods, but so much that they looked pretentious. Here on Earth, several pre-Columbian civilizations tried very hard to mimic the look of their gods in their attire, even to the point of modifying the shape of their skull. Herald armor borrows heavily from the look and feel of their ships. Long and heavy lines
indicate a cold logic, a heavy sense of functionality and pure purpose.
Like in portrayals of angels and other divine beings, the Heralds “dress for the occasion." When they go to a place, they want to impress and overwhelm. They know they have advanced technology and try as hard as possible to hide it in plain sight. Their weapons and armors look deceivingly low tech so they can display their real power later on. I see this race relying heavily in theatrics to reinforce their “magical nature” to what they consider lesser races.
The Heralds also draw heavily from human archetypes and folklore in their main characteristics and abilities. In this case, you see the warlock (captain), the demon (lieutenant), the ghost (construct) and the behemoth (commander). Everything about the Heralds was done to make sure their dark intentions were revealed right away.