Orbital Perspective

Thu 8 September - 12 September, 10AM-7:30PM
Credit: Ron Garan

On October 1, 2013, I left my dream job, the job I had worked my entire life to achieve, a job that took me to the depths of the ocean and to space. I left my career as a NASA astronaut for one compelling reason, to be able to share a very unique perspective our planet full time. I call this perspective, The Orbital Perspective. There usually are two ways to define the word perspective. It may refer to the rendering or interpretation of a three-dimensional object on a two-dimensional plane, or it may refer to an attitude toward something, a point of view. Both of these definitions come into play in The Orbital Perspective. Historically, for the most part, our perspective has been two-dimensional. Although we know that the world is not flat, a true perspective on a three-dimensional, interrelated reality is usually beyond our immediate awareness. But when we are able to zoom out to the orbital perspective we can see all the pieces of the puzzle, who has them, and what picture they paint for our global Society. From space we are given a broader perspective of the word home. From the orbital perspective home is not just where we were born, grew up or where our family lives—home is Earth. From space our circle of kinship expands beyond our immediate family to all who we share this beautiful fragile oasis called Earth. Everything that I’ve done since leaving NASA has been done with the goal of sharing a big picture, long-term perspective of our planet, a perspective that I believe can have profound positive effects on the trajectory of our society. I’ve written the book, The Orbital Perspective, I am working on a full-length feature documentary called Orbital and I took on the roll of Chief Pilot of World View Enterprises.  Through World View I will be taking experiments and people to the edge of space in high-altitude balloons.
Another way that I’m working to share this perspective is through art. Through my art I strive to capture not just the visual of life in space but I also try to capture the emotion of the experience. Each piece that I create has profound meaning to me, and it is my hope that I can communicate that meaning to others. My art stems from a responsibility that I feel to share the experience of living and working in space with as many people as possible through every feasible channel.