A Space Odyssey

By digging through the online image archives of various space probe missions, photographer and filmmaker, Michael Benson, has compiled his third collection of planetary landscape photography. The images–many of them close-ups of the surfaces of moons, asteroids and Mars–offer an awe-inspiring look at the desolate places that were once only imagined by science fiction writers and filmmakers. Benson photographs the black-and-white images through various filters to render the scenes in color, then he layers the images with a complicated compositing process. Going through the RAW images, he says, “is like being along for the ride. There’s a lot of panning for gold in the archives, which I really enjoy. And if you’re lucky you get something really unusual. You just sort of know it when you see it.”

The images are among a collection published in Planetfall (Abrams) last October, and will be on view at the Hasted Kraeutler gallery in New York City today through March 9.  To learn more about Benson’s work, read the Q+A with him from the November 2012 issue of PDN.


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