My husband pointed out this great blog post, featuring travel posters to other times and places, real and fictional. One of the artists showcased is Steve Thomas, whose solar system travel posters are simply captivating. These are but a few, and you can get them all (plus Rivendell!) in large-format calendar form for 2009! Fantastic stuff, I hope to see more from him soon!
Archives for August 2008
Let me just state up front that I found the “stars” of American Chopper completely and utterly OBNOXIOUS… but they did happen to do a really spectacular tribute bike themed around Space Shuttle Discovery‘s Return to Flight mission in 2005, STS-114.
Orange County Choppers‘ site is all Flash-based, so I can’t give a direct link to the photo album of this bike, but it’s on the third page of “On-Air Theme Bikes”, under the Choppers section on the main page. I’ve taken screencaps to show here.
The bike’s episodes are #58 & #59, which aired October 3 & 10, 2005. Minus the stars’ antics, fights and general… drama… the bike is a thing of beauty, and if these guys have one thing right, it’s an eye for minute detail. The gas tank is shuttle-shaped, the exhaust pipes (shown below, my favorite detail) are tipped with a replica of the Space Shuttle Main Engines, and the airbrush work and detailed painting throughout is just… spectacular. I particularly like the miniature orbiting shuttle “spinners” on the wheels, front and back. The gallery is definitely worth a look!
These notecards are tremendous. Would love some.
Explanation: Is that a black hole? Quite possibly. The Cygnus X-1 binary star system contains one of the best candidates for a black hole. The system was discovered because it is one of the brightest X-ray sources on the sky, shining so bright it was detected by the earliest rockets carrying cameras capable of seeing the previously unknown X-ray sky. The star’s very name indicates that it is the single brightest X-ray source in the constellation of the Swan Cygnus. Data indicate that a compact object there contains about nine times the mass of the Sun and changes its brightness continually on several time scales, at least down to milliseconds. Such behavior is expected for a black hole, and difficult to explain with other models. Pictured above is an artistic impression of the Cygnus X-1 system. On the left is the bright blue supergiant star designated HDE 226868, which is estimated as having about 30 times the mass of our Sun. Cygnus X-1 is depicted on the right, connected to its supergiant companion by a stream of gas, and surrounded by an impressive accretion disk. The bright star in the Cygnus X-1 system is visible with a small telescope. Strangely, the Cygnus X-1 black hole candidate appears to have formed without a bright supernova explosion.