astro, history, nature, night, photography, travel, world

A space trip

Andromeda galaxy – the galaxy next door – only 2.5 million lightyears away


This past week, the Canadian actor William Shatner flew to space after getting invited by Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon.  At the age of 90, he finally crossed the so-called final frontier. Shatner got famous for playing Captain James Tiberius Kirk from 1966 to 1969 in 79 episodes of the US TV series “Star Trek”. Later, he took over the role again in a couple of sequel cinema movies.

Although NASA investigated space travel and space exploration at that time, I assume, William Shatner never ever assumed to be once in space himself. He was an actor playing with other actors in a movie studio set-up like a (at that time) hyper-modern and futuristic command bridge of a star sheep. But, times are turning. “Being” the captain of a spaceship made him famous and can be considered as the foundation of his international career. Although there were a couple of further movies dedicated to space travel at that time, I’d consider this one as the archetype of space exploration movies. In my opinion, the egalitarian philosophy (gender and skin color are not important at all – for that time, these sets were extremely progressive although you can see from today’s point of view, that there is room for more) among crew members as well as between crew and aliens: observe but not interfere.

On Twitter, I saw a screenshot showing Shatner after having left the spaceship and quoting him, that would have been the dream of his life. Another commenter was quite upset about it. Why he could have done this at that age and it would have been better, a scientist or at least a younger person were shot to space.

I can understand Shatner and why he had not refused to accept the invitation. Since I’m a child I’m interested in space exploration. In my children’s room, I had a huge poster on one of the walls showing the Space Shuttle in all of its glory while riding on a cushion of fire and smoke up to the stars. I’m admiring the images taken from outside of our planet showing our planet, stars, or deep-sky objects. Over the years a couple of books found their way onto my bookshelf, starting from my childhood. Jesco von Puttkammer and Carl Sagan are among the authors and in the 1990s I started collecting digital images published by NASA on their quite new web page. One of the most impressive images I’ve ever seen is the rising earth about the moon surface taken by the Apollo 8 astronauts as they came from behind the Moon. You see the image on the NASA homepage. When I’d get such an opportunity, I’d try everything to be part of that special party. My perfect destination would be a stay at ISS for a couple of days. I’m so jealous of Alexander Gerst (Astro Alex) and the views he had during his spare time on ISS. You can see some of the images he took while on ISS on Twitter.

I know, I will never ever get such an invitation. Nor will I ever have enough money to pay for my own tourist’s flight. And, to be honest, currently, these tourist flights are only up to about 106 km above sea level and allow only a very short stay. The flight up and down lasts longer than the stay. So, it’s more like a “hey, I was there” than enjoying the experience.

On the other hand, it’s a huge amount of waste and pollution necessary for making such a trip possible.

I took that image above showing the Andromeda galaxy in February this year. I’m not totally happy with the result, but I guess, it’s quite ok. Photographing deep-sky objects from the earth is very challenging. They are not very bright, but very small and light pollution is a serious problem. OK, when knowing where and when to look, you can recognize Andromeda with your bare eyes as a tiny patch different in size, brightness, and color than the surrounding stars. But it’s still a challenge photographing it and for having a view, I’d definitely recommend using a binocular or better a stabilized telescope.

Take care!

landscape, nature, photo-of-the-day, photography

Lens-Artists Photo Challange 170: “Street Art”

This week it’s Patti’s turn to challenge us for The Lens-Artists Photo Challenge. She asks for “Street Art”. After having sold a piece of art created by the British (?) artist Banksy for such an enormous amount in an auction.

I love street art. You can find more street art here on my blog by using the tag: “streetart” or “street art”

So, I only have a small selection here:



 

 

P.S. don’t forget to click on the images to enlarge them.

P.S.2: As usual, I’m recommending Excire Foto to find certain images on your hard disk. I know, how frustrating it can be when having an image for a blog post in your mind but not remembering exactly when and where you have taken it. As Excire Foto automatically indexes and tagging your images, it’s a huge help. You can search by keyword, a combination of keywords, and even the main colors to find certain images or even have a very different view on your archive, download a trial version to see, what Excire Foto can do for you!

Take care!

landscape, nature, photo-of-the-day, photography

Lens-Artists Photo Challange 169: “ordinary”

This week we have another guest host for The Lens-Artists Photo Challenge: I.J. Khanewala of Don’t Hold Your Breath and she asks for the ordinary.

 

It’s fall. The rose apples or rose hips are ripe. You can see them when looking carefully around. Only about a centimeter long and half a centimeter diameter.

Guess, what we have here, before reading further. I suspect you also have it at home. Probably in your fridge. A couple of eggs. Were you right?

Apples are very common in supermarkets. It’s great to have them.

 

Blooming time is over in the Northern hemisphere. Only a few autumn flowers and a couple of leftovers are still blooming. This image is from summer.

 

A baby’s hand. A couple of millions are around on our planet. When counting all hands in, we have approximately 16 billion human hands currently on this planet. Not counting the hands of the decreasing number of other primates in.

Fire, candles, matches. Very common, very ordinary. Candles are burning in houses, churches, temples. Fire is used for cooking and matches are nee ded to enlight both of them.

 

Streets are crossing all regions and countries. Not all of them are looking like this and even the vehicles moving on the streets are looking different. But, our whole civilization even the more primitive lives of our ancestors wasn’t possible without a primitive kind of street.


Stones are tiny parts of the earth. They are everywhere. We even use them the build our houses, streets, walls and so on.

 

Rain is a necessity for life. At least for a kind of life like we know it from hour planet Earth.

 

P.S. don’t forget to click on the images to enlarge them.

P.S.2: As usual, I’m recommending Excire Foto to find certain images on your hard disk. I know, how frustrating it can be when having an image for a blog post in your mind but not remembering exactly when and where you have taken it. As Excire Foto automatically indexes and tagging your images, it’s a huge help. You can search by keyword, a combination of keywords, and even the main colors to find certain images or even have a very different view on your archive, download a trial version to see, what Excire Foto can do for you!

Take care!