As an astronaut, I flew two missions to live and work in space for a total of 180 days on the International Space Station (ISS). The experience of living in space forever changed me and how I look at Earth. Seeing the fragile beauty of Earth from afar inspired me to completely new levels of creativity.
While living on the ISS, my favorite thing to do during my down time was to hang out in the cupola, gaze at Earth and take photographs to try and capture the beauty. The earth is simply so beautiful and connected that it is hard to put into words. I used my camera to compose photos to capture the most beautiful moments...times when the clouds would make amazing images or the northern lights would flash beneath me or the sun would glint on the horizon of the earth, or when the blues of the oceans would confound my senses. Today, I look at those photographs and am inspired to create artworks from them.
Since retiring from NASA in 2020, I have been working in my home studio to create art that celebrates my time as an astronaut, living in space, my family, and my interest in Earth conservation. My medium of choice is fabric and thread; I love to create textile artworks. The process of puzzling the fabrics and textures together engages both the technical and creative sides of my brain.
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