Sunday, September 27, 2020

North Coast Night Lights: Ray of Beauty at Moonstone Beach

Posted By on Sun, Sep 27, 2020 at 6:00 PM

An odd thing happened while out sifting through the coastal night light for a compelling image. The waxing crescent moon had already set and the night was dark. My brother Seth and I walked without lights through the night along the beach, each step something of a leap of faith as only faint differences in the darkness revealed the sandy contours before us.

An evening shot of Moonstone Beach. - PHOTO BY DAVID WILSON
  • Photo by David Wilson
  • An evening shot of Moonstone Beach.

Presently a lighter object emerged from the shadows on the ground ahead, its dim form sliding slowly toward us as we walked. It was probably trash, I thought, remnants of a sunny day’s activities thoughtlessly left behind. I nearly kicked at it to ascertain its composition, but was spared that folly as my brother flicked his light on to reveal the lifeless form of some kind of ray.

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Monday, September 21, 2020

North Coast Night Lights: Visualize the Stars

Posted By on Mon, Sep 21, 2020 at 4:28 PM

“Roads? Where we’re going, we don’t need — roads.” - Doc, Back to the Future II.

One of the more challenging visualizations for me is to imagine looking at the Solar System from a point above it in outer space, far enough out that the Sun is but a bright point of light below. With no inhibiting sunlight, the stars are bright all around us; we see deep into the Cosmos wherever we turn. The Milky Way’s misty path forms an incredible ring encircling us completely, from its thick, dense core region in one direction to the thinnest stretches on our opposite side.

One path leads to another … In late April, one must get up pretty early in the morning for a window like this one out into the Universe. Dawn is brightening the sky on the eastern horizon as the Galactic Core sweeps across the sky in a vain attempt to outrun the light of day in this view from a country road in Humboldt County, California. Photographed on April 24, 2020 at 04:55 a.m. - PHOTO BY DAVID WILSON
  • Photo by David Wilson
  • One path leads to another … In late April, one must get up pretty early in the morning for a window like this one out into the Universe. Dawn is brightening the sky on the eastern horizon as the Galactic Core sweeps across the sky in a vain attempt to outrun the light of day in this view from a country road in Humboldt County, California. Photographed on April 24, 2020 at 04:55 a.m.
Suspended above the Solar System, there is no day or night for us, and time can almost stand still as we hang here in space. But there is movement around the little Sun below us, and where there is movement, there must be time.

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