Spaceships roaring across depthless vistas, weapons flaring into the vacuum. Can any visions really live up to our mental images of the glory of space opera? Hell yes, and here's the concept art to prove it.

We decided to cure our Monday blues by seeking out some of the coolest space-opera concept art on the Web, including the entries from two concept-art challenges and some matte paintings and CG illustrations by some of our favorite artists. Follow the links after each image to find way more awesomeness. If you want to view this in non-gallery format, click here.

Top image: Translight jump by Francis Tsai. More art at the link!

Space opera art by Alan Chan, from the Art Institute Online & Alienware concept art competition.

Spaceship art from Alexander Preuss aka Vampeta, winner of the CG Society's Grand Space Opera challenge. [via Concept Ships]

Destruction by John Wu. Way more art at the link!

Starship by Francis Tsai. More art at the link!

Proposed Battlestar Galactica revamp concept art by Eric Chu. (More at Cinemaspy!)

CCP Games concept art by B. Börkur Eiríksson, more art at the link!

CCP Games concept art by B. Börkur Eiríksson, more art at the link!

Lusiatania by Andree Wallin, more art at the link. A tribute to Orson Scott Card's Xenocide.

January Dancer by Sparth, more awesome art at the link.

Flight Response by Philip Straub, more art at the link.

Entry in the CG Society's Grand Space Opera challenge by Tamas Jarolics.

Entry in the CG Society's Grand Space Opera challenge by Mike McGregor.

Entry in the CG Society's Grand Space Opera challenge by Sidharth Chaturvedi.

Entry in the CG Society's Grand Space Opera challenge by Pawel Lewandorski

Tony Bela's entry in the CG Society's Grand Space Opera challenge.

Herve (Nuro) Grossin's entry in the CG Society Grand Space Opera challenge.

Strength book cover by Stephan Martiniere. More at the link.

Lady Of Mazes book cover by Stephan Martiniere. More at the link.

Space book cover by Stephan Martiniere. More at the link.

Space opera concept art from Epistemonike Phantasia