From the cold of space, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has quietly been snapping pictures of Mars for the last 12 years. Using a camera system called HiRise, it’s been mapping and taking detailed stills of the Mars surface. Now, a Finnish filmmaker named Jan Fröjdman has taken those stills and very painstakingly stitched them together into a beautiful video. The result is stunning, a serene yet unfamiliar flyover of magnificent landscapes that are as varied as they are beautiful. Mars, we’re coming for you. This takes us one step closer. We highly recommend you watch this fullscreen, with the resolution turned up to 2K. Via Gizmodo:
Turkish artist Hüseyin Sahin has a vivid imagination, judging by these digital collages he dreamed up. He shows a beautiful use of lighting and blending. It’s great to see this type of surrealist creativity, it often jars loose some unique ideas of our own. Via Colossal and Behance:
Between Höfn and Djúpivogur in rural Iceland lies a Viking village. Well, a beautiful replica of a Viking village, that is. Built in 2010 for a film that never happened, the replica set is beautiful desolate and abandoned. Due to funding issues, the set was never used, though that might change in the next few years, as interest in Viking history grows. Photographer Jan Erik Waider has a beautifully stoic collection of images from the set, which looks as if it’s been there for hundreds of years. Iceland just never stops amazing us. Via Behance:
China has recently completed construction of the world’s biggest solar farm. Called Longyangxia Dam Solar Park, the operation generates 850 Megawatts of electricity, which for the uninitiated, is enormous. Containing over four million solar panels, the plant can generate enough power from the sun to run nearly a quarter of a million homes. The Guardian has a good look at the new solar park, part of China’s giant effort to clean up their electrical generation. As solar prices get cheaper, look for more of these giant installations to help take our planet out of the age of coal, oil and gas.
Astronomy Picture of the Day has a remarkable shot of a crater lake reflecting the gorgeous aurora above it. Learn much more about the photo and the stars contained in it on their website.
When we say reflective, we mean the quiet, contemplative kind. Artist Jennifer Boland’s installations are part of Desert X, a sprawling art exhibit being held in the American Southwest.
In displaying the actual mountainous backdrop on these large digital billboards, Boland forces the casual driver to make a connection between the physical and the two dimensional. Indeed, the images are aligned in a way that from a certain angle, the billboards align perfectly to the mountains behind them. Desert X is happening February 25 – April 30. Via DesignBoom:
NOAA’s 2017 American Samoa Expedition has discovered some amazing deep sea creatures, many of whom defy explanation and description. Their finds underscore just how critical science is to our society. The Venus Flytrap sea anemone?! Or how about this incredible Armored Searobin. Our planet never ceases to amaze, and in 2017, it’s truly remarkable that we’re still discovering new and fascinating species. Via Gizmodo:
This is just Wow. As an Oregonian, I’m very proud of my state. It’s people and politics and nature all add up to something special. But I’ve never seen the Beaver state like this, and I bet you haven’t either. Made using infrared converted cameras, Sam Forencich has created a masterpiece of scenery and landscape. Beautifully shot using drones and time lapse, the scenery looks completely otherworldly thanks to the way infrared lights things up. Mount Hood comes alive with colors you’ve never seen. Crater Lake looks like an alien landscape from a science fiction movie. Edited with brilliantly choreographed sound design, this is a fullscreen, sound-on affair. Do yourself a favor and devote 5 minutes fully to this video, entitled Invisible Oregon. It’s amazing. Via LaughingSquid:
Spy in the Wild is a PBS and BBC show where high-tech, animatronic animals are placed in a wild environment with their flesh and blood counterparts. The results are often eye opening and charming. But behind the scenes, and below the surface, these creatures are complex robotic achievements, producing lifelike movements and blending in seamlessly to their surroundings. Check out the series to see these creations in their adopted habitats. Via Sploid:
Spend too much time looking at the news these days, and you’re liable to want to leave the mainland. Literally. Well, if you happen to have deep (very deep) pockets, Melody Key might be just the ticket. Located 25 miles from Key West, this miniature island is only 5.24 acres, but features a beautiful three story timber lodge, complete with a self sufficient solar and desalination system. And the fact that it’d be your own private island just sounds good. Yours, for a cool $6.9 million. Via Uncrate: