The view through the eyepiece of the telescope is breathtaking. Like tiny diamonds on black velvet, countless sparkling stars float against a fathomless backdrop of empty space. “This is Omega Centauri,” says astronomer Alain Maury, who runs a popular tourist observatory just south of San Pedro de Atacama in northern Chile.
“To the naked eye, it looks like a fuzzy star, but the telescope reveals its true nature: a huge, globular cluster of hundreds of thousands of stars, almost 16,000 light-years away.” I could take in this mesmerizing view for hours, but Maury’s other telescopes are trained at yet more cosmic wonders.
There’s just too much to see.
Chile is an astronomer’s paradise.
The country is justly famous for its lush valleys and snowcapped volcanoes, but its most striking scenery may be overhead. It is home to some of the finest places on Earth to enjoy the beauty of the starry sky.
If there’s one country in the world that really deserves stellar status, it’s Chile.
If you live in a city, as I do, you probably don’t notice the night sky at all. Yes, the moon is visible at times, and maybe you can see a bright planet like Venus every now and then, but that’s about it.
Most people are hard-pressed to recognize even the most familiar constellations, and they’ve never seen the Milky Way.
An isolated cumulonimbus (an extremelydense,verticallydevelopedcumuluswith a lowdarkbaseandfluffymassesthatextend to greatheights,usuallyproducingheavyrains,thunderstorms, or hailstorms) overshoots the tropopause as we deviate around it at 37000 FT south of Panama City, Panama.
The only light source is the powerful lightning within the storm.
Austrian photographer Andreas Franke has chosen the Stravronikita, an abandoned shipwreck located just off the Caribbean island of Barbados which suffered a fire with no hope for reclamation over 20 years and was resigned to an eternity at the silent depths of the sea.
Franke has resurrected the fossilized wreckage through an ongoing photographic series called ‘The Sinking World’.
With the series Stavronikita Project he explores the flamboyant and extravagant late baroque style of Rococo.
The Viennese artist determined that this European era, this age of decadence with all its intoxicating extravagance, its vanity and disdain would sign-on to the Stavronikita.
But did he really determine it? Was the Stavronikita not rather urging him to do so? The wreck full of lavish life demanded a match as overflowing and abundant as Rococo, its ideal equivalent.
Andreas Franke is in the business for more than twenty years.
For Luerzer‘s Archive he is among the “200 Best Photographers“.
Despite the temptation to seek shelter myself, I took this photo of a small group of gentoo (penguins) on Saunders Island in the Falklands as they struggled against the wind and driving sand to return to their rookery.
Comment by Paul Goldstein, Judge:
A clear winner.
Initially I thought this was a study in slow shutter speed, but then saw that these gentoos are almost floating across this Falklands beach in a sandstorm.
I’ve been to this beach and never got close to this sort of masterpiece.