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October 01, 2006

Clyde Tombaugh, Discoverer of Pluto. (SOLD!)

This is a 5x7 inch, original, acrylic painting by Nitrozac.


Painting has been sold! Thanks rektor.donz!

I think Clyde Tombaugh deserves a little more attention. Not only does he have a cool, retro 50's look, he is also the discoverer of the planet Pluto. His face seems calm and relaxed, and he looks like a distinguished gentleman. After reading about him and his work, I decided to paint his portrait.

Click here to view the auction.

Recently, the International Astronomical Union demoted dear, sweet, little Pluto, causing an outcry of sadness and grief among star gazing geeks, myself included (see the comic Snaggy and I did about it in The Joy of Tech). Even Clyde's widow said she was upset! What kind of monsters would upset a nice little old lady! Don't they have anything better to do than recategorize space objects?! Is it that bleak out there in the space discovery business that they have to pick on the little guys?!

So, I painted Clyde's portrait in deep thought and reverence and silent protest. I was thinking of how it must have felt being the discoverer of a planet, an actual planet! How exciting it must have been to have seen it in the telescope, and realize you're the first person to observe it. Imagine the fun he must have had thinking of a name for it-Pluto! What a sweet little name for such a sweet little planet. Ok well, maybe the Lord of the Underworld isn't that sweet, but Pluto the planet is. While I painted, I thought of how upsetting it might have been for him if he was alive, to have his discovery just tossed out with the other little blobs in space. I am glad he is not here to know such sadness. I get comfort from the fact that some of his ashes are on the New Horizons spacecraft, travelling towards Pluto at this very moment. *sigh*

It is my honour to paint Clyde Tombaugh, and I hope that the new owner of this painting will appreciate Clyde's beautiful contribution to astronomy and our geeky world. May it inspire you to look at the stars and love all the objects in the sky, whether they're big giants or tiny planets, they all have a story to tell if you're willing to listen.

Posted by at October 1, 2006 12:04 AM