I've always thought galaxies were the most incredible structures in existence. The title here, of course, is in homage to Professor Stephen Hawking.
The second render has some added nebula, star clusters, and other "irregularities" as suggested by some of my Members.
I love that there are many features from our own galaxy in this piece. That provides in a more familiar feel. It gives me a little jolt of excitement when I see another nebula that I recognize, and this keeps me looking at it.
"Sadly, it's still wrong"
Fri November 18, 2011 at 8:40 pm
The gallery render of The Grand Design is corrected, but the Pickle Jar Alternate Version is still incorrect. It says 5120x1600, but it's really 5120x1440.
"5120x1600 wrong link once again"
Sat November 5, 2011 at 6:57 pm
5120x1600 wrong link once again
"I think someone else is using your pic!"
Sat November 5, 2011 at 11:58 am
I Dont know if they have the rights...i just wanted let you know,http://www.elefun-desktops.com/show-10004/Fantasy-World-wallpapers.html its similar do this
"Perfect for animation"
Fri November 4, 2011 at 9:34 pm
One of the things I love so much about your work is the sense of motion that they have. Looking at this image, I can almost see the spiral swirling majestically in space.
I don't know if you're considering any other animation projects in or in the future (like your cooperation with the guy doing the mobile backgrounds), but this would be a fantastic candidate for an animated wallpaper. Especially at 1080p (well, a guy can dream, can't he? ;) ).
"Much better! And the PS3 XMB theme?"
Fri November 4, 2011 at 11:07 am
Damn, that's gorgeous. That'll go on our PS3 as soon as I can get to it.
"Yep, love it."
Thu November 3, 2011 at 10:05 am
That'll be my wallpaper for a while
"Lovely image, wrong size again :)"
Thu November 3, 2011 at 6:00 am
Love the new framing in the v2 image. The 5120x1600 dual 16:10 image is only 1440 pixels high it seems...
Wed November 2, 2011 at 8:42 pm
Wed November 2, 2011 at 2:55 pm
This is going on my iMac, right now! Fantastic design.
Tue November 1, 2011 at 11:17 am
Love the edits, glad I could help! The new clusters really add to the view! A few other minor edits that I might suggest would be to reduce the size of the nebulae and add some brighter variations on the reds and blues in the nebulae. Here's a pretty good example, though it's a little more edge-on: http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap110915.html Maybe a few more background galaxies as well? Just a few thoughts on it.
Overall, as I said before, I am a huge fan of your work, and your spacescapes have always been wonderful. This one is certainly no exception. Well worth every cent of my lifetime membership.
Mon October 31, 2011 at 9:21 pm
Those were some good suggestions. This one looks even better.
"Zoom the Image"
Mon October 31, 2011 at 4:02 pm
The multi-screen thumbnail shown on the home page is AWESOME. You should keep that framing for all of the multi-screen versions and add a Pickle-Jar single screen version framed in exactly the same way. It is magnificent.
"The Grand Design v.2"
Mon October 31, 2011 at 3:59 pm
I've posted a second render this afternoon has some added nebula, star clusters, and other "irregularities" as suggested by Pete (thanks!). I am rendering a new multiscreen as well but it isn't quite finished yet...
Sun October 30, 2011 at 12:27 am
I'm probably in the minority, but I like the zoomed in / cropped versions that you put in the multi-screen images. It reduces the negative space, and adds more interest (for me) in the whole image. Kind of seems more dramatic.
On the other hand, I like the subtle nebulae (wash of colors) in the space background behind the galaxy in the single screen version. The non-flat-black quality of space in your images has always been one of the things that drew me to your space images. It adds a neat extra layer of depth.
Thanks for another beautiful set of pictures. And happy Halloween to you and yours!
Sat October 29, 2011 at 10:12 am
Love the book and now your rendering, beautiful.
"my 2c worth"
Sat October 29, 2011 at 6:14 am
Re the cropping issue. I for one prefer all images expanded with more detail/info added to the left and right so that you can see more... all about more! - So, zooming in for me is a bit of a cheat, but do understand that you're trying to enhance the detail!... still a fantastic design imo!
Fri October 28, 2011 at 8:40 pm
It was my hope that zooming in would show more detail than what is available in the single-screen version. It didn't turn out like I had hoped, but since the render took so long to finish I figured I would post what I had and work on an update.
"Cropped top and bottom"
Fri October 28, 2011 at 6:52 pm
Love the single monitor version, hate the cropped multi-screen versions. The beam of light shooting out is the coolest part. Seems like the multi's don't even need a render when they appear to simply be cropped versions of the single monitor masterpiece.
"How dare you"
Fri October 28, 2011 at 5:04 pm
tempt me away from your Halloween images!? I Have a hard enough time deciding which one to use and then you throw in a space image! lol
I like it and I think that Pete had some good ideas. If you get board you could also do 2 galaxies passing through/crashing into each other. You'd have the "perfect symmetrical" galaxy in this one, and then the deformed little brother in the next.
"The Grand Design"
Fri October 28, 2011 at 12:45 am
Absolutely love this image, and agree on less zoom! Love Pete's suggestions!
"Less zoom for the multi-screen"
Fri October 28, 2011 at 11:46 am
I love the single-screen version of this, but feel I'm losing some of it's impact in the multi-screen by being so zoomed in.
"Maybe back out a bit more"
Fri October 28, 2011 at 11:21 am
I liked the radiation jets the most on the main image so for the dual screen I'd love to see those more rather than a close up personally.
Still great pic though!
Fri October 28, 2011 at 10:46 am
This would be the image that made me renew for another 2yrs. Great stuff ... now only if it was animated over my three screens. :)
"Just the right kind ..."
Thu October 27, 2011 at 3:24 pm
I have to say, while all of your work is stunning, I truly joined for these spacescapes/planetscapes ... primarily the former. I second Pete's suggestions and anxiously look forward to any revisions- I'm sure I'll just cycle through them all anyway.
Reminds me of accretion plus coalescence with a final dash of hiddenforces - which is to say, awesome.
Thu October 27, 2011 at 3:11 pm
Thu October 27, 2011 at 10:56 am
Those are some fantastic suggestions! I think some small "irregularities" here and there would improve this greatly and they don't sound that difficult to implement.
I think an update may be in order, but I think I will wait until the multiscreen version finishes rendering (and post that) before I make any changes.
Thu October 27, 2011 at 10:41 am
This looks quite wonderful, Ryan! In your quest for the perfect galaxy, I hope I'm not overstepping to make a few suggestions. I worked in a planetarium for about five years.
There are a few things that you can add to this galaxy that will really make it stand out. One is nebulae. There are kind of three types of nebulae: reflection nebulae (mostly blues and dust,) diffuse HII regions (ionized gases, mostly hydrogen, usually reddish and bluish,) and supernova remnants (can be all sorts of colors and fun shapes.) Check out the NASA Astronomy Picture of the Day, and you'll find some great photos of these.
The next thing I'd tell you to add would be clusters of stars. There are two main types of star clusters: open clusters and globular clusters. Open clusters are usually about 100 or fewer stars, usually in/around nebulae, and are not as densely packed. Globular clusters, on the other hand, are densely packed and generally consist of a few dozen thousand stars. An open cluster might be within about a half-dozen light years, while a globular might be only 1-2 light years across. Again, the NASA APOD is a great place to look for some examples.
Lastly, I'd also make the dust lanes perhaps just a little bit more pronounced. This is entirely personal opinion.
On the whole, this looks just lovely, and I certainly want to thank you! I've been a longtime follower of your work, and the lifetime subscription I purchased is, in my opinion, one of the best things I have ever spent money on in my entire life.
Thu October 27, 2011 at 10:36 am
Thu October 27, 2011 at 9:30 am
I want a print of this! :-)
Thu October 27, 2011 at 6:11 am
The Grand Design. A good read, an even better wallpaper!
Thu October 27, 2011 at 2:57 am
Yes, THIS is why I keep coming back. Love it.
Thu October 27, 2011 at 2:53 am
Images like this or space photography in general always amaze me at how insignificant our problems are in the grand scheme of it all. Nice work.
Thu October 27, 2011 at 1:44 am
First thing that poped in my head was Newborn 2002 also. Newborn is one of my farvorite old school images. This one looks similar but different enough to give it a different feal.
Great but yet simple image would be easyer to animated. I wounder if this image will end up as an Andriod Live Wallpaper... *hint* *hint*
Wed October 26, 2011 at 9:09 pm
Is this a remake of Newborn from '02? I love this galaxy. I agree with chiops about the animated wallpaper.
Wed October 26, 2011 at 9:09 pm
This is one of my favorites of all your space wallpapers. It's simple, elegant, and definitely easy on the eyes (a big plus for a space scene with lots of stars and such).
"A grand design"
Wed October 26, 2011 at 8:41 pm
Very grand indeed. Would make a really cool animated wallpaper.
Wed October 26, 2011 at 8:16 pm
Great space picture Ryan!!!
"Perhaps a little bland."
Wed October 26, 2011 at 7:35 pm
It looks nice, don't get me wrong, but I find this one to be a little bland. It seems to be lacking that certain "wow" factor that I often find in your work.
Wed October 26, 2011 at 5:43 pm
btw... yes Dracul is my current desktop and has been since I downloaded it. I liked the final version with the orangey moon. My boyfriend loved it too :) I showed him many of your artworks when I first met him and now he looks forward to viewing the latest when he comes over to see what awesome new stuff you've come up with
"The Grand Design"
Wed October 26, 2011 at 5:37 pm
*jaw drop* Spectacular - I love it!
Wed October 26, 2011 at 4:52 pm
I love it. Thank you, Ryan, and thank you for the homage to Professor Stephen Hawking!
"The Grand Design"
Wed October 26, 2011 at 4:50 pm
...not particularly impressed with this one...
Wed October 26, 2011 at 4:01 pm
Very nice image! :) I love the star detail - very crisp like sugar. The rays are maybe not fitting completely. Seems a little flat and blurry to the rest of the image. Maybe adding some turbulence to them?
"Missing from RSS feed?"
Wed October 26, 2011 at 3:25 pm
I think this image is superb, but I almost missed it because there was nothing about it in the RSS feed. The last entry in the RSS feed was Dracul
Wed October 26, 2011 at 2:24 pm
Very cool. Can't wait for the multiscreens. The only thing that bothers me is the sharp difference in blackness where it looks like a "boundary" of the galaxy is. Perfect otherwise.
Wed October 26, 2011 at 2:23 pm
Awesome as always. It goes up November 1st. Gotta give Dracul its due season :)
Wed October 26, 2011 at 2:15 pm
Love this. I expect it to rapidly climb to the top of my favorites list. :)