Astronaut Don Pettit Demystifies the Art of Taking Photographs in Space

Over the years, we’ve shown you Don Pet­tit’s work — his many time­lapse videos tak­en from the Inter­na­tion­al Space Sta­tion. (Find some below.) By now, we take these videos almost for grant­ed. We watch the breath­tak­ing scenery flow by, and we shrug our shoul­ders a bit. Rarely do we step back and think: holy mack­er­el, this cat is tak­ing art­ful videos in space. Nor do we won­der: how does one take pic­tures in zero grav­i­ty any­how?

It’s fas­ci­nat­ing when you think about it. And, now Don Pet­tit gives you a glimpse inside his cre­ative process. Speak­ing at the Lumi­nance 2012 con­fer­ence in New York City, Pet­tit explains the chal­lenges of pho­tograph­ing on the ISS — the equip­ment required, the quick deci­sions you need to make, the obsta­cles that get in the way, the aes­thet­ic choic­es you need to con­sid­er, etc. And then he gets into some intrigu­ing ques­tions. Like how do you cap­ture the col­ors of the auro­ra bore­alis? or what fab­u­lous pho­tographs can infrared pho­tog­ra­phy yield?

His talk runs 30 min­utes, and it will inter­est the casu­al observ­er or the all-out pho­tog­ra­phy geek.

Don Pet­tit Videos from the ISS:

Ani­mat­ed Auro­ra Bore­alis from Orbit

Great Cities at Night: Views from the Inter­na­tion­al Space Sta­tion

What It Feels Like to Fly Over Plan­et Earth

Star Gaz­ing from the Inter­na­tion­al Space Sta­tion (and Free Astron­o­my Cours­es Online)

via Metafil­ter

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