What is Digital Space Art?

“Space art,” sometimes called “astronomical art,” has a long, distinguished and respectable history. Artists have been creating imaginative works showing conceptual and fanciful spacecraft, strange new worlds and awesome galactic vistas since long before the first primitive artificial satellites were boosted into earth orbit.

Until the advent of the personal computer, space artists relied on traditional media, such as oil paints on canvas or acrylics on illustration board, to show us their visions. Today’s powerful PCs and Macs provide an optional medium.

The images on this website showcase some of the capabilities of affordable three-dimensional (3D) modeling and rendering software in creating photo-realistic images of space and other subjects. When the website was new, CGI (computer-generated imagery) was as well, and it was fairly rare at that time to see extensive CGI use in movies and television series. Since then, movies such as "Avatar" and the Lord of the Rings series, with their teams of hundreds of artists and buildings full of computers, have taken CGI almost infinitely far  beyond the capabilities of mere individual amateur "tinkerers" and their desktop machines. But there's probably still a place for the kind of art you'll find here.

The hardware models in these images--spacecraft, booster rockets, interplanetary probes, and so on--are realistic extrapolations of designs not so very different from vehicles that have actually flown. You won’t find any physically impossible “fantasy” spacecraft here. Most of these images feature the hardware in a prominent role--they’re not just extraterrestrial scenery.

Take a few minutes and browse through the site. You’ll find the following pages:


The About the Art page gives some details about the techniques I used to create the art. It’s not a tutorial, but if you’re unfamiliar with the tools and terminology of 3D modeling and image editing software, it’s a good place to start.

The Gallery displays tons of images, each with an explanation of what is depicted in the image.

New pieces of artwork start out on the What’s New page--check it out often to see the latest images.

Finally, the Links page contains a small collection of links carefully selected to be of interest to space art enthusiasts and 3D modelers.


Enjoy your journey into the far-out realm of
Digital Space Art.




    

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This site was last updated on: Sunday, February 8, 2015.

Copyright 1998 - 2015 by Terry L. Sunday. All rights reserved. Please ask permission before using any of these images for any reason.
Some of the background images for these works are available in the public domain.