Artist transforms photos of rusty fire hydrants into pictures of alien planets

Illustration for article titled Artist transforms photos of rusty fire hydrants into pictures of alien planets

Redditor gumballbrain (Trapexoid on Tumblr) was messing around with a photo of the top of a fire hydrant one day when he noticed that the flaking paint and rust resembled a planet covered in water and solid land. Since then, he's made a hobby of taking photos of fire hydrants and finding the planets hiding on their lids.

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gumballbrain manipulates the images in Photoshop, and says he enjoys the process of taking an ordinary urban object and imagining the worlds he uncovers—dreaming of the inhabitants, the societies, the politics that come out of these geographies. They remind me a bit of Christopher Jonassen's photos of the bottoms of cooking pots that look like distant planets. It's interesting to see that our pareidolia finding planets in ordinary objects.

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The artist has posted more of these fire hydrant planets on Tumblr.

I like taking pictures of rusty fire hydrants and turning them into planets. [reddit via TwistedSifter]

Illustration for article titled Artist transforms photos of rusty fire hydrants into pictures of alien planets

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DISCUSSION

TheSpoiler
TheSpoiler

It's called texturing. I've been making graphics and paintings in Adobe Photoshop for around 10 years now. One of the ways you make new textures is to take close up photos of ordinary things, wood grain, stone, concrete, rusty metal, etc. Basically any surface that has an interesting appearance that you can then use to map out and paint onto whatever it is you're making. I've made several "alien planet" paintings myself.