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The Milky Way (artist's concept)Astronomy is a visual science. We learn about the universe through observation, using some of the most sophisticated cameras ever created on the ground and in space.

In this blog I will examine the way we look at the universe, spanning both how data are rendered into images, and how scientific concepts are illustrated in artwork. Here you will find astronomical images dissected, with insights into how they are made, learn how the interplay between artistic inspirations and scientific considerations shapes the design of astronomical art.

Growing up watching Star Trek and reading a broad cross section of science fiction literature, I think it would be negligent to leave out the realms of the fantastic from these considerations as well. I will also take a lovingly critical eye to the way astronomy is visualized in popular media.

As the “visualization scientist” working for NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope project since 2002, I have had the unique opportunity to establish the public look of some of the most amazing datasets of our age. I have taken on this blog to share some of my musings on this distinctly visual side to science communication.

Please note that the ideas expressed in astronomyVIZ are my personal views and in no way should reflect any official policy of NASA, JPL, Caltech, or any other agency for which I work directly or indirectly. While I naturally draw heavily from my professional experiences, this is a personal blog and should be treated as such.

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