Friday, December 29, 2006
Some years ago I had a recurrent dream in which I would wake in the middle of the night, walk to my bedroom window, and gaze up at a night sky speckled and daubed with thousands of multi-coloured stars, galaxies and nebulae, all visible to the naked eye. Like celestial Christmas lights, vivid reds, greens, blues, oranges and golds were mixed with the cold silver of ordinary starlight, and I would stare in wonder at the delicate pinks and purples of the nebulae, and the opalescent spirals of the galaxies. No doubt my subconscious imagination had been fuelled by the colourful vistas of magnified, wide-field, long-exposure astrophotography, but by placing all these individual images together upon the sable inner surface of the celestial sphere, my subconscious generated perhaps the most spectacular sight I've ever seen. This photograph of an aurora over Lake Michigan, reminded me of this dream, but remains a pale imitation in comparison.