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michiel | 11 years ago | 7 comments | 12 likes | 7,175 views

vincent, Carlos Marques, sinus300 and 9 others like this!

Here's something I wanted to do for a long time.

This show renders the 300 brightest stars as seen from earth. Every star has its own picture layer and is placed at the correct position in 3D space, relative to the earth. When you place the camera at (0,0,0) (with the POSITION property of the camera layer) and look around (with the ROTATION property of the camera layer) you can see all the constellations.

When you start the show you are looking at Orion. You can see its "belt": the 3 bright stars in a row. The big red star at the top left is Betelgeuse.

Setting the camera rotation to (26,-73,0) shows the big dipper (Ursa Major)

And (19,-17,-9) shows my zodiac sign (Lion)

A cool feature is that you can fly to other stars (with the POSITION property of the camera layer) Interesting to see how constellations change shape. Clearly the big dipper only looks like a big dipper when seen from earth. Lots of new constellations to discover when flying through space. When you see something that looks like Bix, let me know ;)

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Star gazing works best by selecting the ROTATION property of the camera layer, left clicking in the render window, holding this left mouse button down and moving your mouse horizontally (heading) and vertically (pitch).

Moving while holding down the right button controls the roll.

michiel, 11 years ago

Set the camera rotation prop to (107,147,142) to see the scorpion!

michiel, 11 years ago

The BT file has been generated by a script using the data from this page:

michiel, 11 years ago

A nice effect is to set the ARM LENGTH prop of the camera layer to (0,0,-500) and then rotate the camera (again by selecting the ROTATION prop and moving your mouse in the render window while holding down the left or right button)

Feels like holding the milky way in your hands. Scary when you think about it...

michiel, 11 years ago

Dude, you put some thought into this one! Sweet!

BillyJack, 11 years ago

Very interesting. Moving armlength to cross the galaxie.
Nice project Michiel.

vincent, 11 years ago

Scary but beautiful

Dolly, 11 years ago

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About michiel

Michiel den Outer is the founder and lead coder of Outerspace Software. He lives in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

If he isn't busy improving BluffTitler, he is playing the piano or rides the Dutch dikes on his bikes.

Contact michiel by using the comment form on this page or at