If you’re following NASA or the International Space Station, you probably know who Chris Hadfield is. He’s been in space since December 12th, and will soon take over as Commander of the ISS. When that happens, he will add “first Canadian commander of any ISS” to his CV, which already lists him as the first Canadian Astronaut to walk in space.

We love an astronaut with a maple leaf!
We love an astronaut with a maple leaf!

If you look him up on Wikipedia, you’ll find out that his interests are skiing, writing, running, singing, playing guitar, and playing volleyball. But that page needs updating. Almost since he got up there, Chris has been collecting and tweeting an awesome group of photographs; photographs accompanied by some great text. Just 2 hours ago, he tweeted this one:

st. laurence ice
“People ask if I see aliens. If sci-fi has taught me anything, this St. Lawrence ice is what they’d look like if I did”

Chris is a mind meld of scientist and artist. We tend to think that those worlds are poles apart, but they’re not. They’re both essentially creative, exploratory fields. After all this is a man who decided to become an astronaut at the age of nine – guess why – because that’s when we landed on the moon. Chris’ career is the result of a lot of work, and a lot of dreaming too.

The Sahara
“Arid fingers of sand-blasted rock look like they’re barely holding on against the hot Saharan wind”

I love this one in particular, composed of powerful forces giving no quarter in an ancient struggle. His writing is equal to the task, never mind that he’s limited to 140 characters.

A Valentine in Space
A Valentine in Space

Those in long-distance relationships take note: Just because you’re away doesn’t excuse you from keeping in touch on those important occasions. Commander H sent his wife a series of Valentines from a couple hundred + miles above. This heart-shaped hole in the clouds was my favourite, accompanied by the tweet “The clouds are quickly fleeting, but the heart continues beating”. If you think that’s romantic, he also sent a shot of a lonely iceberg to describe his solitude that day. It had it’s very own hash tag too: “Without you my heart is a lonely iceberg. #ValentineFromSpace”

BDQqHpYCAAAryap.jpg-largeHow often do you get to see something like this? It’s a thunderstorm bulging out the top of cloud cover above Malaysia.

Fault Line in the Andes
Fault Line in the Andes

And how cool is this? A picture of tectonic plates creating a fault line in the Andres. Now that’s amazing.

BENh74HCUAAc93M.jpg-largeAnd finally, this poetic approach to sand and sea. Chris describes it as the “The Sea playing with the sand” off the coast of Pakistan.

It’s a big world out there for an Astronaut poet, and I wish him many more days of great shooting in the sky.

Chris uses a Nikon D2X and D3S. Photo credits: Chris Hadfield/NASA. He tweets @Cmdr_Hadfield


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