VSL:SCIENCE // Light pollution: It’s bad, but now it’s beautiful

Thanks to light pollution, only a third of the American population sees stars. But deep in the heart of Texas, a nature photographer named Blake Gordon looked up at the skies and saw a series of silver linings.

Visit Gordon’s “Cloud Projections” gallery, and you’ll see the shadows, flares, and refractions that Austin’s skyscrapers cast on the clouds above: ghostlike patterns that might be the urban equivalents of the halos, parhelia, and sun pillars you’d find in the polar regions. Nothing’s as beautiful as the Milky Way, of course, but these lesser heavenly lights do have an odd appeal of their own.

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VSL:SCIENCE // Light pollution: It’s bad, but now it’s beautiful