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It is a stunning new view of one of mankind’s greatest achievements.
A new short film has used digital effects to turn thousands of NASA images of the Apollo missions into a short film.
Called Lunar, it uses techniques such as stop motion and panoramic stitching to bring the photographs to life.
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Filmmaker Christian Stangl spent over 18 months on the project, and describes it as an ‘animated collage’. It uses techniques such as stop motion and panoramic stitching to bring the photographs to life and create scenes that never happened – such as this shot from the surfact showing a lunar module blasting back to Earth.
THE APOLLO ARCHIVE
The Project Apollo Archive was created in 1999 by space enthusiast Kipp Teague.
It brings together over 14,000 public domain NASA-provided Apollo mission imagery as it was originally provided in its raw, high-resolution and unprocessed form by the Johnson Space Center.
The full collection can be viewed here.
It was created by photographer and filmmaker Christian Stangl over 18 months, who describes it as an ‘animated collage’.
The idea came when Stangl was looking at Project Apollo Archive, a collection of more than 14,000 images from all of the flights in the Apollo program put together by space fans.
‘I was fascinated by the amount and the quality of the Pictures,’ he told PetaPixel.
‘They were thousands of that beautiful high-res photographies made by the famous Hasselblad-Moon camera.
‘When I looked at the Archive, I knew immediately that I want to make a film with these photos!’
Two main techniques were used – stop motion and panoramic stitching.
First Stangl analysed the images to find sets of photos that had the potential to be stitched together.
‘Especially on the lunar surface, the Astronauts often focused on taking 10 or more pictures of one view,’ he said.
To give the appearance of movement, he looked for short sequences of photos which had a recognizable coherent movement, which he said was usually just 2 -4 frames.
‘The challenge was to stabilize and time-stretch them to clips which were much longer then the original sequences,’ he said.
‘Honestly that was a tedious trial and error process.’
Stangl, whose brother Wolfgang provided the soundtrack, say the film is ‘dedicated to all people who believe in peaceful expansion of our borders.’
To give the appearance of movement, he looked for short sequences of photos which had a recognizable coherent movement, which he said was usually just 2 -4 frames
Stangl analysed the imaged to find sets of photos that had the potential to be stitched together
Earlier this year stunning unseen photos of the 11 Apollo missions give an inside look on the most famous flights in history through the lens of the very few astronauts who have ever dared to explore space.
A team of four European designers chose 225 of the least seen photographs of the Apollo missions and released them in a new book titled Apollo VII-XVII, by Simon Phillipson, Joel Meter, Delano Steenmeijer and Floris Heyne.
The breathtaking collection of images provide a new perspective on the flights from the astronaut’s point-of-view.
The Apollo IX mission test-flew the command module and lunar module together in Earth orbit. Dave Scott’s spacewalk was one of the most-photographed parts of the mission and one of the images brilliantly lit, artfully composed, showing both spacecraft in a single frame became a NASA icon
A team of four European designers chose 225 of the least seen photographs of the Apollo missions and released them in a new book titled Apollo VII-XVII , by Simon Phillipson, Joel Meter, Delano Steenmeijer and Floris Heyne. This photos shows Apollo XVI’s John Young as he leans against his lunar rover
During the Apollo missions, NASA made photography a high priority by redesigning cameras that could operate in space, according to a TIME article written by Jeffrey Kluger, the author of Apollo 13 & Apollo 8.
The space agency invented ultra-thin film that would allow one roll to contain 200 exposures, according to Kluger.
Thousands of images were captured during the flights, but only a few made the cut for the public eye to see.
THE APOLLO MISSIONS
On July 16, 1969, American astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin ‘Buzz’ Aldrin, and Michael Collins lifted off from Kennedy Space Center, Florida, in the mammoth-sized Saturn V rocket on their way to the moon during the Apollo 11 mission.
The Apollo program was designed to land humans on the Moon and bring them safely back to Earth, and six of the missions (Apollo 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, and 17) achieved this goal.
The NASA program resulted in American astronauts’ making a total of 11 spaceflights and walking on the moon.
The first four flights tested the equipment used in the Apollo Program.
Six of the other seven flights landed on the moon.
The first Apollo flight happened in 1968.
The first moon landing took place in 1969.
The last moon landing was in 1972.
A total of 12 astronauts walked on the moon.
The astronauts conducted scientific research there, studying the lunar surface and collecting moon rocks to bring back to Earth.
The six missions that landed on the Moon returned a wealth of scientific data and almost 400 kilograms of lunar samples.
Experiments included soil mechanics, meteoroids, seismic, heat flow, lunar ranging, magnetic fields, and solar wind experiments.
The first manned mission to the moon was Apollo 8.
It circled around the moon on Christmas Eve in 1968.
The stunning unseen photos of the 11 Apollo missions give an inside look on the most famous flights in history through the lens of the very few astronauts who have ever explored space. On Apollo XII, Al Bean’ planted and positioned the flag, meanwhile Commander Pete Conrad, is visible only as a long shadow
However, Apollo 8 did not land on the moon. It orbited the moon, then came back to Earth. The crew was Frank Borman, Bill Anders and Jim Lovell.
The first moon landing occurred on July 20, 1969, on the Apollo 11 mission.
The crew of Apollo 11 was Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins and Buzz Aldrin. Armstong and Aldrin walked on the lunar surface while Collins remained in orbit around the moon. When Neil Armstrong became the first person to walk on the moon, he said, ‘That’s one small step for (a) man; one giant leap for mankind.’
Some of the photos have their imperfections as they seek to show an unglamorous behind the scenes look at the work that went into these missions.
The photos show litter left on the lunar surface, astronauts crossing unfamiliar and mountainous terrain, as well as sunlight glares on their camera lens and mishaps with their equipment.
Kluger’s latest book Apollo 8 will be released on May 16.
Apollo VII was the first test drive of the Apollo spacecraft, limited to Earth orbit, yet it offered glimpses of the more ambitious flights to come. The crews would get nowhere near the moon without the upper stage of the giant Saturn V rocket, which would blast them out of Earth orbit and would carry the lunar module like a kangaroo joey in an onboard compartment
The space agency invented ultra-thin film that would allow one roll to contain 200 exposures. Thousands of images were captured during the flights, but only a few made the cut for the public eye to see. This photo was shot by Apollo XII’s Pete Conrad with a giant sunburst to the left as Al Bean lugs scientific equipment into the field for placement on the surface
The Apollo XI LEM has separated from the command module and hangs, seemingly upside down before the camera of Michael Collins, left alone in the command module
The last three Apollo missions visited hilly and even mountainous terrain that the first three didn’t dare try. The Apollo XVI crew visited the Descartes Highlands, where mountainous uplift exposed geology that was not available on the flatter plains. Long shadows and black-and-white film convey a sense of how far-ranging the field expeditions became
NASA recently unveiled a new online library that assembles the agency’s space photos, videos and audio files into a single searchable library.
The NASA Image and Video Library consolidates space imagery from 60 different collections into one location.
‘NASA Image and Video Library allows users to search, discover and download a treasure trove of more than 140,000 NASA images, videos and audio files from across the agency’s many missions in aeronautics, astrophysics, Earth science, human spaceflight, and more,’ NASA officials wrote in a statement.
‘Users can browse the agency’s most recently uploaded files, as well as discover historic and the most popularly searched images, audio files and videos.’
Apollo XV almost came to ruin when it touched down. NASA had strict rules about how sharp an angle was safe for a LEM landing, and a 15-degree slope was the maximum. Any steeper and liftoff could be compromised. The moon’s Hadley-Apennine region was treacherous, however, and the 10-degree incline of the landing spot was the best the crew could find
From some angles, the irregularly shaped LEM could achieve a certain doily-like symmetry. Apollo XIV’s Stu Roosa captured this image of the top of the lander as it drifted away from the command module. The dark circle at the center of the roof is the docking port, where the nose of the command module would connect, allowing a tunnel to be opened between the two ships
The moon that we see from a distance belies a certain fluidity that’s visible up close, as captured by the Apollo 15 crew. Some regions of the moon have preserved the state of the landscape as it was when the lava flowed across it and hardened. Snaking channels like the one that twists up the image from the bottom of the frame might have been lava riverbeds
The Earth in this image from Apollo XI looks dauntingly far away and the lunar module, which appears to have been stapled together from sheet metal seems barely up to the task of making the trip off the surface