Planet X

This was inspired by the announcement from Prof Mike Brown that he was on the trail of a new ice giant planet, way, way beyond Pluto.

This was revealled by some unusual allignments on the orbits of several Kuiper Belt objects.

For the art, the challenge was to show something clearly, while giving an impression of almost total darkness. Here’s what I came up with:

Planet X
Artists impressionof the possible giant planet in the far outer solar system.

The rich star background is there to imply a very long exposure.

I gave the planet a ring. While the material that far out is sparse, the planets gravity would be completely dominant, while the influence of the Sun would be tiny. For the same reason, I would expect it to have many small moon’s, (not shown).


The Frost Giant

A finished piece, with fairly heavy use of photoshop, to combine the different elements. Shadow for the figure was scribbled in manually.

Landscape and sky were rendered separately, everything in Lightwave 3d as usual. I’m not used to working sith such a restricted colour pallette, but I am very pleased with the results!

The planet object is available for full users of Foundation 3d, in Lightwave format.


Pioneer 11

Pioneer 11 was the first probe to reach Jupiter and Saturn. It is not often remembered, I think because of Voyager 1 and 2 followed on relatively quickly, and these probes delivered much superior imagery.

But Pioneer 11 was important, not least because it established if it would be safe to send the voyagers very close to the giant planets – the amount  of radiation and debris near them was not clear before the encounters.

saturn-approach-compositex pioneer-polar-jupiter2x

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Modo Moon

I keep meaning to find the time to learn Modo properly. It’s clearly a powerful and logically laid out piece of software, but I keep falling back on Lightwave which I know so much better.

Here’s a relatively rare Modo item from me, a displacement mapped Moon, (that’s Earth’s Moon, just to be clear!)

lunar-north-pole moon-2maps-03

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