Jan Curtis                                                    15 Minutes of Fame

Because of my passion for nature, devoting my life to the physical sciences led me naturally to photography.  I was always told:  Do what you enjoy doing and things will turn out just fine.  I'm glad that I followed my dreams because things did turn out just fine.  As a result of the Internet, I have had the opportunity to share my views of the world with the world.

The mechanics for taking a picture is basically aim and shoot and anyone can do this.  However, since photography is an art form of self-expression and can be very personal, picture composition, timing (being at the right place at the right time), and imagination (the sky's the limit) are key elements to a great photo.  By taking lots of pictures and keeping
only the ones that inspire your heart and soul, it's then that others will appreciate your talents and perhaps better understand who you really are.  Although beauty is only in the eye of the beholder, we are all tied to nature because we are all the product of nature.  Your inspiration might just inspire others to take a second look at the natural wonders of life.

My exposure (pun intended) to photography took off when Sky and Telescope used my May 25, 1975 photo of a total lunar eclipse that I took in Paso Robles, California as the front cover of their August 1975 issue.  Under perfectly clear skies, I thought that it would be a neat trick to take a long exposure of the eclipsed moon and after about a 5 minute gap, show it trailing out of totality along with the stars.


Mat_1975sky

Since then I have taken all sorts of pictures when the moment seemed right.  Below are samples of some of my favorites.

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pix4 pix3 pix6
pix10 pix8 sailboat
pix11 pix14 fireworks

Besides photography, I have always been interested in astronomy and worked on a project to catalog all kinds of astronomical events.  It is a bit crude in today's high precision standards but gives one an idea of relatively how rare a celestrial gathering of the sun, moon, and the planets are in the sky.

In 1997, a very bright comet named Hale-Bopp graced the skies for well over a month as a brighter than zero magnitude object. My photos inspired artist Glen Scrimshaw to paint this image.   Then in October 1998, I received an email from Tom Bopp.

Finally, here's part of my scrapbook showing some examples from around the world of how my images were used: (Greek, Japanese, Finnish, etc.)

greek   japan  finnishscan04scan05scan06



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Here's a sample of various recording artists that have used my images on the CD album:

al00al01al02al03
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al04al05



A NASA Pamphlet featuring many of my images:

nasa1

nasa2
 
Recent books (mostly fiction) on which my images were used as front covers.

book01book02book03book04
book0book06book07book08
book09book10book11book12

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