The dreams of space.
Those dreams that I often don't let myself contemplate, for fear that it will take my attention away from the practical steps that I am focused on now that may enable me to achieve those dreams in the future.
When I am contemplative, I sit back and consider the current plans of those who struggle along side me in Man's efforts to escape Earth and what is on her.
SpaceX, Orbital, Blue Origin, Boeing, XCOR. Astronautical Engineering courses. Sweeping arcs showing Launch Vehicle Kilograms to circular orbits or escape velocity. Job postings for dynamic Loads engineer, Avionics Test Engineer, Solar Array Engineer. Rarefied Gas Dynamics, Shock Waves and dynamic pressure, nozzle expansion ratios, Melting points, rotation rates, electric discharge arc voltages, power budgets, star trackers, Nickle hydrogen batteries, redundant wiring harnesses...
This is the swarm of brushes, paints on the palate, media types, artistic methods, and implements by which Man creates the works of art that are space exploration.
These are the building blocks of the dreams of spaceflight.
In Space, Man can reinvent society. Find solitude in a nature never beheld by man, and discover alien lifeforms and landscapes. He can plunge to great depths, explode to ultimate heights, insulate himself from the deepest colds and deflect the searing heat of stars far brighter than the sun. He can blast the new knowledge that he gathers through antenna dishes across light years of space or find complete isolation from any and all who could want to communicate. He can travel at incredible speeds or swing in spiraling arcs betwixt alien moons and super-massive planets.
Finally, Man can find himself and what it is to be man when the circumstances that crowd his home of Earth have fallen away leaving him singularly alone with his consciousness and ambition.
Mankind can roll the dice again on himself, his society, and world in a billion billion different places with as many new sets of rules and society-shaping constraints.
Water Jet Operator, Turbomachinery Engineer, Planetary Scientist, Ground Control operator, Mission director, Astronaut. We are legion.
I am John Wilson Benac. I am in the midst of a structured masters degree program from the University of Southern California to learn a coherent and synergistic set of skills to enable me to shape the machines to carry man's dreams outward. I work 8 hours a day ensuring that the life support systems hardware that launches and returns from the International Space Station supports the mission requirements. I choose, along with thousands of others, the pursuit of space exploration as my careers work. And God willing, I shall move mankind outward into the void in which God placed us, to find the shores of distant lands which he created for his truly ambitions and blessed children to attain.
What paintings will be created with the pallet mankind so painstakingly prepares? The Space Shuttle, Space Station, Delta, Atlas, Proton, Soyuz, GPS, Arienne machines were once concepts alongside hundreds of other ideas which never were realized. As in the 1950s, countless tabletop designs ask for our limited resources to turn them into actual dream machines.
From Konstantin Tsiolkovsky's 1903 "The Exploration of Cosmic Space by Means of Reaction Devices" to Jules Verne's 1865 "From the Earth to the Moon" and Hermann Oberth's 1923 "The Rocket into Planetary Space," all the way through the countless college students, practicing engineers, and enchanted layman, we dream and imagine together what man may do in the limitless star filled expanse that is outer space.
Perhaps I should indulge in the pleasure and wonder by conceiving of a few paintings of my own rather than focus on the palate from which the paintings are created.