18 - 18
Tracking Comet Hale-Bopp from the mid 1990's.
A detailed cutaway graphic of the European Space Agency's Columbus Space Laboratory. The entire module and components were modeled and rendered in Strata 3D CX. Astronauts were taken from NASA photos taken on the ISS.
After the Shuttle Columbia tragedy, things around the ISS were stacking up and falling into states of disrepair. This graphic highlighted several points where work was needed 220 miles above the Earth.
The Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV) named after the famed English Science Fiction author, Jules Verne, arrives at the space station. Once again, the exterior and interior models were created with Strata 3D CX, the astronauts add in Photoshop.
What steps would be taken to reach the moon once again. Freehand was the graphic application used for this graphic.
One graphic I wish had been in color. It would have had more impact when envisioning what the atmospheres of distant planets could look like. One of the many collaborations I made with USA TODAY Science Reporter, Dan Vergano.
Showing the process that goes into extracting oil from sand.
Simply put, this is my career highlight, Poop Graphic.
A collaboration with USA TODAY designer Bob Laird, this full page, color graphic showed the improvements made in the structure of the shuttle and changes in mission procedures after Columbia's breakup over Texas.
An oversize version of this graphic was requested by NASA to run in its Visitor Center at Kennedy Space Center.
My last major 3D graphic for USA TODAY to commemorate the end of the Space Shuttle Program. Lightwave was used to model and render the art.
Staffer Sam Ward mentioned that this was one of the best graphics to run in the history of the paper.
From former Art Director of USA TODAY, Ron Coddington, a challenge was issued. Create a vintage looking graphic with current content. I took Issac Newton's telescope diagram and used the details of the Hubble repair mission as the content.
The return to flight mission of the shuttle program faced potential weather delays.
This graphic ran around the time of the full-page Return to Flight graphic. This took some of those elements but also added the 360 degree 'pirouette' maneuver to allow the crew of the ISS to shoot high-res photos to send to Mission Control for inspection. Missing heat tiles or damage to the protective tiles were the main focus.
Returning to Earth on the Russian Soyuz capsule was a far cry to the smooth re-entry of the space shuttle as this graphic shows. With the shuttle fleet grounded, this was the only way home.
Just after this graphic was published, journalists from Russia were touring our building and I had to share this graphic with them.
My contribution to the story coverage of the Columbia tragedy. This was a quick turnaround graphic with a very basic 3D model of a Russian Soyuz spacecraft and my very first ISS image to run in print.
The first time my 3D model of the space station appeared in print. It was also my first opportunity to work with former USA TODAY Space Reporter. Traci Watson.
While not a fully rendered 3D graphic, Strata was used to make the process of creating this graphic easier. The ability to plot points on X, Y and Z axises helped when creating the final image in Photoshop.
A very quick graphic but I was very happy with the style of it once it was printed.
Content Copyright 2013 Robert W. Ahrens
Visual Storytelling | Data Visualization | Graphic Design