Artist Comments, Background, and Inspiration

My name is onboard the "passenger list" for the next mission to Marsย -ย Mars 2020

The robotic scientist will search for signs of past microbial life, characterize the planet's climate and geology, collect samples for future return to Earth, and pave the way for human exploration. With a launch window scheduled to open in July 2020, the rover is expected to land on Mars in February 2021!

View my boarding pass:ย https://mars.nasa.gov/participate/send-your-name/mars2020/certificate/215216674329

....boy did I have to call in some favors to get this! ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜‰
boarding pass for Mars trip
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A Note from the Artist:
ย I see myself asย an experimental mixed media, watercolor, gel pen, acrylics, and alcohol inks artist gone digital.ย 
Besides that, I've been fascinated with outer space since I was in grade school, but that was a lifetime ago and I never took it seriously until now andย here I get to share aย lifelong passion for astronomy and space travel through my art.
I dedicate thisย website to those who celebrate the possibilities out there for us inย the vastness of space, and to those who want to take partย in the adventure ahead for humans as we enter the galactic playing field.
i believe
Have you noticed recently thatย newsworthy events about space happen almost every day now!ย  For instance, early in 2019, a team of scientists led by a 28-year-old researcher photographed a black hole for the first time in history!ย  Even India has put a spaceship on the moon! Scientists have discovered earth like exoplanets far from our solar system such as Kepler 452b and Kepler 186f, and scientists have had to create a variety of new names for new discoveries - terms like super earth, and hot Jupiter, or gravitational slingshot, and termination shock.
Other scientists have found evidence of thousands of black holes living near the center of our galaxy.ย  Astronomers have even detected signals from the oldest stars in the universe!
Personally, I believe the universe holdsย much more information than our senses can perceive, and reaching out into space will challenge everything we ever thought was true.ย ย I have been fascinated with interstellar travel and drawing pictures of space since childhood - and now, as an artist, this barrage of newly discovered planets and celestial objects lights up my imaginationย with questions;
โ€œIs there sound in space?โ€
โ€ฆIs there really a Planet 9?
โ€ฆ How long does it take to get to Mars?โ€
โ€ฆ โ€œWhat is the Great Attractor?โ€
โ€ฆ โ€œExactly how does mass bend spacetime?โ€
โ€ฆโ€œWhy is Light a particle when you are looking at it but a wave if youโ€™re not?โ€...and on and on...
...I think thatย someday our great-great grandchildren
will look back on these times,
and they will see that this point in history (our time right now) was indeedย a turning point
โ€ฆand we are living at the beginning of a major paradigm shift,
of the human experience.
ย ย (D.W. 2019)
Check out these websites:
NASA's site:
https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/alien-worlds/exoplanet-travel-bureau/ย 
International Association of Astronomical Artists:
www.iaaa.org
Minnesota Artists:
www.mnartists.org
Background and Inspiration:
Donย began drawing space art at eight years oldย -ย spontaneously doodling and coloring with anything that would make a mark on paper.ย  This practiceย stopped as the distractions of life came in to play and many years went by until the famous scientist Carl Sagan said something that woke up the sleeping artist somewhere in my brain,
Dr. Sagan said:
โ€œSince in the long run, every planetary civilization willย beย endangeredย by impacts from spaceย - every surviving civilization must become spacefaring.ย  Not because of exploratory or romantic zeal, but for the most practical reason imaginableย - staying alive.ย  If our long-term survival is at stake, we have a basic responsibilityย to our species to venture to other worlds.โ€ Carl Sagan
Todayโ€™s world has embraced this thought, but when it was first spoken by Dr. Sagan, it was a brand new concept that shook me to the coreโ€ฆ.Yes, a single cataclysmic event or collision that happening anywhere in our galactic neighborhoodโ€ฆ.ย could obliterate
allย of US and all of THIS and all of everything that CAMEย BEFOREย ย !!ย 
I hope that in even a tiny way, my work starts some conversations that move us forward in that direction.
artist's Process
I love to create art, but I canโ€™t stand trying to โ€œthinkโ€ on to a blank piece of paperโ€ฆ I have to fill the space with something/anything (!) first, or my brain slowsย  toย  a stop right there.ย  So Iโ€™ve learned to start with mixed media materials -ย watercolors, acrylics and alcohol inks and gel pens on a full sheet of Arches brand hot press watercolor paper to create my background (which is abstract at this point).ย  Then I take a few days or weeks to start stare at the image until my mind discernsย shapes and forms and ghostly hints of images where I saw nothing before.ย  Then there comes a point when I realize that I understand what the image wants to become (if that makes any sense at all), andย I get a high-resolution image made of my painting, then load the file into Photoshop.ย  There I can create layers on top of the original image (without damaging it) and then use any of the thousands of digital brushes to paint in the asteroids, comets, and scenarios I see in my mind.ย  After I re-work the image and clean it up, I have it converted a second time into a high-resolution digital file that gives us the intensely colored pieces you see here.
So put some excitementย on your walls!ย  Start your space art collection today!
Browse the gallery
Choose your favorite image
Decide on aย size
Pick your medium
Place your order
Enjoy your purchase!
  • Framed
  • Unframed,
  • Canvas,
  • Paper,
  • Acrylic,
  • Metal
  • ย ย Woodย 
And don'tย forgetย to check out the
  • Beachย towels
  • Wall tapestries,
  • Throw pillows,
  • Shower curtains
  • Tote bags!
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