CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS

Sector 6

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Visions of Saturn Danced in Our Heads
cosmicart      
01-02-2015  15:57:42

Dear PiperPilot: Sorry, I didn't mean to imply that you didn't know who Carolyn was; I was just pointing out that someone with her creds appreciates the scientific value of modern space art (which has little to do with Flash Gordon, etc). The International Association of Astronomical Art has, as one of its goals, to teach and mentor space artists to do the very best science they can within the artistic framework. Their art is frequently used by scientists precisely because it does depict reality as science understands it at the time. But I really apologize if I sounded in any way snippy! Best wishes for the new year.
cosmicart      
12-25-2014  17:58:06

Dear PiperPilot: A great deal of data that we get today is numerical rather than visual. We also do not have images on a human scale for places other than a handful of landing sites. In both of these cases, astronomical art is of great value, and this value is appreciated not only by the public but by the scientists whose work is being visually "translated". If you are further interested, I would highly recommend Ron Miller's new book "The Art of Space" with an opening by Carolyn Porco. Carolyn (who, as you know, is imaging team leader for Cassini) wrote a nice intro that will answer your objection well.
cosmicart      
12-24-2014  16:08:59

Dear Stevekasian: Udanax is correct, but it's a very tricky problem. I had discussed the phenomenon with Carolyn Porco at length, and we even had a lunch with piles of napkin drawings. In the end, I had to make a sculpey version of what we see (see my updated caption, which should appear on CICLOPS soon). Michael Carroll
cosmicart      
12-24-2014  16:07:45

Dear Stevekasian: Udanax is correct, but it's a very tricky problem. I had discussed the phenomenon with Carolyn Porco at length, and we even had a lunch with piles of napkin drawings. In the end, I had to make a sculpey version of what we see (see my updated caption, which should appear on CICLOPS soon). Michael Carroll