Ursa Major constellation from Uranographia by Johannes Hevelius
The night sky in southern California has been clear the last couple of nights. When I look up at the sky I see Orion the Hunter and the clear dots that make up the Big Dipper. The night sky shows different constellations depending on where you live around the world and I spend most of my year in the northern hemisphere, which limits the constellations I get to enjoy on a daily basis.
I am unsure how rest of the world studies the stars, but whenever I go to the planetarium, there is usually a light show that recreates the night sky in a dome theater. After a few minutes of staring at clusters of white dots, the animations are projected on the screen that outline each constellation with its corresponding group of stars. I had an issue with the constellation animations because they were so intricate and full of detail that they were completely different from the simple group of stars that it represented.
Creating an image out of a constellation seems so simple, like connecting the dots. I like to think of myself as a creative person, but I have a difficult making out the outline of a large bear when I stare at Ursa major, the big dipper, when all I really see is a saucepan with a crooked handle.
What is your favorite constellation? (In addition to Orion and the Big Dipper, I am partial to Scorpius.)
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kawaiidaigakusei at 12:00AM, April 17, 2017
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