mercredi 12 février 2014

The Space Elevator to Mars - Descent At Dusk

About 40 hours of work on this massive photomanipulation, made in high definition. I first built a 3D model (in Blender) of the whole area thanks to NASA topographic data (MGS MOLA), set the correct light and then photo-manipulated it carefully in Gimp, adding layers of color map (Viking) and high definition texture map (MGS MOC), plus adding the many details. The cable of the space elevator is also a 3D model.
So, we are in a travel cabin, descending along the cable of the space elevator, descending to Sheffield, the spaceport located on top of Pavonis Mons (the central volcano on the image). The time at the surface is dusk, and several large cities are appearing in the dark.
This image is entirely inspired by Kim Stanley Robinson's Mars Trilogy.
As always, made 100% open-source on Linux-Ubuntu, with Blender and Gimp.
I'd like to publicly thank Daniel Macháček for his fundamental help in the making of this image, as he taught me how to use the NASA data sets in the best way available. Whithout his help I doubt I would have been able to bring that realism in this picture. Please check out Daniel's astronomy photo-mosaics blog : http://my-favourite-universe.blogspot.fr/
I want also to thank NASA and USGS for the wonderful and free data made available in such a cool way.
I mostly used MapAPlanet www.mapaplanet.org/

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Finally, let me recommend you the excellent kimstanleyrobinson.info website, where you'll get to know everything about KSR's books, past, present and upcoming. A site worth following, on FB and Twitter too !



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