Illustration of space telescope by Kent man to appear on US stamp – Record-Courier
An illustration by a Kent artist will be featured on a new United States first class postage stamp that debuts in June.
The illustration is of the new James Webb Space Telescope, the one that succeeds the orbiting Hubble Telescope that has expanded our knowledge of the universe. Launched into space last December, the new telescope has been stationed one million miles up in a position in which the gravitational pulls of earth and the sun are equal.
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The artist is James Vaughan, a graduate of Roosevelt High School (Class of 1973), who spent a year at Hiram College before continuing to pursue his education at Columbia College of Chicago, a private institution of higher education that specializes in the arts.
Always interested in science and technology, Vaughan has developed a solid reputation for using art to depict subjects that for many might be daunting. Science Magazine, for its February 2016 edition, contacted Vaughan to do its cover for a story the magazine was developing on the James Webb Space Telescope that NASA had contracted with Northrop Grumman and Ball Aerospace & Technology to build. The illustration he created will go on the new postage stamp.
The telescope is named for America’s NASA administrator who served during the space race with the Soviets in the 1960s. Because it was under construction in 2016, Vaughan had to fashion his magazine illustration from engineering drawings that Northrop Grumman shared with him. The Science Magazine cover, the basis for the new postage stamp, shows a device attached to a solar panel about the size of a tennis court. With solar power, the telescope will employ infrared photography to peer deep into space. It will capture images farther away than anyone has ever seen and help unravel mysteries of the universe.
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Amazingly, Vaughan had to re-invent himself to do illustrations like the James Webb Space Telescope because of the changing technology of art. For much of his career, relying on photography, he specialized in Fashion Photography in Chicago.
He eventually returned to Kent, to reside closer to his older siblings. A sister, Ginger Vaughan, was teaching art at Kent State. Benefitting from acquaintances at the University, Vaughan taught himself Photoshop and other applications and began working out of his home on North Willow Street. Demand for his services picked up. When the new James Webb Space Telescope stamp is issued, business activity for Vaughan may grow even stronger.
I asked Vaughan to name a teacher who had been a major influence. He quickly mentioned Ken Gessford, the Roosevelt art teacher, now retired, as well as several social science teachers.
Vaughan’s ability with science subjects may come naturally. His father, the late Paul Vaughan, a Purdue educated engineer, served as Director of Research at Goodyear eventually leaving to found FILMCO in Aurora.
Elsewhere, we all have an opportunity to learn what we in Northeast Ohio must confront if we want to improve our water whose quality has been, and is continuing to be, damaged by various forms of pollution as well as by man-made impervious surfaces where water collects and stagnates.
Kyle Dreyfuss-Wells, the Chief Executive Officer of the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District, will be the presenter at the Edith Chase Symposium Friday, May 20 at Kent State’s College of Architecture and Environmental Design. The 7 p.m. presentation is free and open to the public
The Friday program will be followed up Saturday at 4 p.m. with “Birds of the Cuyahoga”, a gathering of poets reading original poetry at the Wick Poetry Center Plaza. Kent State Professor Emeritus Bob Heath, a molecular biologist who arranged the program, contends science and the arts can join forces to boost environmentalism.
David E. Dix is a former publisher of the Record-Courier.
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May 15, 2022 at 03:58AM