Recently, NASA launched “Visions of the Future,” a set of free-to-download posters with an original view of what space travel could look like in the coming generations. Looking to inspire young pioneers in the fields of science and math, these posters are an artistic rendering of a future that could include the most exotic of travel destinations.
“Imagination is our window into the future.”
The posters were released by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), following the discovery of a few potentially habitable worlds. Though it may be centuries before we can bask in the light of two suns on Kepler-16b, Joby Harris, David Delgado, and Dan Goods wanted to celebrate the exciting scientific developments with art that people would be drawn to. As Harris, the lead artist, told CNN:
“I remember sitting in meetings with the scientists, thinking ‘oh my goodness, science fiction is now becoming science non-fiction. People gravitate toward those old posters. They hang them on their walls even today and you want to go there. They’re a celebration of place. So we thought we’d produce come of our own and come up with funny tag lines that would get people dreaming about what it would be like to go there.”
Joby Harris illustrated the posters for Kepler-16b, Kepler-186f, HD 40307g, Earth, Titan, Jupiter, 51 Pegasi b, HD 114762b, Gamma Cephei Ab, and PSO-J318.5-22. Jessie Kawata, the Creative Strategist Lead for JPL designed the art for Venus. Liz Barrios De La Torre, also an illustrator for JPL, created the art for Ceres and Europa.
Three of the other posters were created by Invisible Creature, a design studio run by two brothers and based in Seattle. Don and Ryan Clark have ties to NASA as their grandfather, Alfred Paulsen, was an illustrator and graphic designers with NASA for over 30 years. They happily designed the posters for The Grand Tour, Enceladus, and Mars. “Nowadays we use photography for tourism ads. But old (illustrated) travel posters have whimsical takes on locations. Your mind kind of gets lost in the art.” Don Clark told CNN.
The purpose of the project was not just to create beautiful art, but also to work within the realm of plausibility and depict something that could actually happen someday. All of these planets are real and with future science and technology it is possible that people could visit them sometime in the future. They were created to celebrate the huge advancements in discovery and also to help inspire public curiosity about the universe. There is so much we still don’t know, but we can be excited about the future.
“Maybe on one of these other planets, they’re making posters about visiting here.” -Harris
Please visit JPL and NASA’s site here to download these amazing posters or to purchase already-printed versions.
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