One of the great things about SketchUp is that there are literally thousands of plugins available that let you automate various tasks, as well as those tools that come with the program itself. While building Tom's console I tried all sorts of various methods, using a plugin called SoapSkin which will generate a surface stretched over a frame that's already made. The problem with this is that with complex shapes it creates a fair amount of erroneous geometry which you then have to go round and manually tidy up. Also, as the generated geometry isn't very uniform, it's doesn't respond very well to tools like joint push/pull and offset. I'd also tried to use the 'follow me' tool to carve out the shape required on the front, but again this doesn't create perfect geometry (mainly at either end) so I binned that idea.
In the end I went ahead a built most of the front side from scratch, firstly because using this method I could control the output a lot more, and secondly because the geometry required isn't organic. By that I mean the front of Tom's console is actually flat surfaces, not a curved surface, score!
Here's where I am so far with it, most of the key geometry is down it just needs detailing and tidying up now...