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Public Lecture

'Illustrating the invisible'

By Pierre Carril, Scientific Illustrator, France - Monday 5th November.

About the Lecture

Pierre Carril will present in high resolution digital projection a journey through a selection of astronomy illustrations made over the last 20 years years for different science popularization magazines, mainly in France, as well as Artist's views of space programs commissioned for  the French (CNES) and European (ESA) space agencies.

In this presentation you will admire in very large format, on a scale never shown until then, these images usually printed in small size. They will be projected to the exact size at which they were worked by the illustator.

This journey in space and time is called "illustrating the invisible" and you will discover in the form of astronomical fresco, the close planets, exoplanets, constellations, distant stars and galaxies, to the confines of the known universe. The imagination, supported by precise scientific data, invites itself to each step of the illustration work to give a realistic view of what we cannot observe directly. Different Universes, simulations and concept views will also be screened and talked about. This visual immersion will allow you to share the creative work of the illustrator who is trying to reveal here some of the most beautiful shows of the cosmos and to make you discover the incredible machines like satellites and giant telescopes imagined by scientists to unlock its secrets.



About the Lecturer


Born in 1963. My passion for space was born as a child, I followed the APOLLO program on TV, mission after mission, between my sixth and tenth year. In 1976, at the age of 13, I discovered the wonderful movie :  2001 A Space Odyssey. These visual experiences made me a child of Apollo and Stanley Kubrick!
Between 1980 and 1984, I studied art at the SUPERIOR SCHOOL of APPLIED ARTS in Paris, where I learned the ancient art of engraving and worked the art of illustration. At the end of the 80s, while I was working in advertising by doing graphics and photo editing (with Brush and Airbrush), I discovered emerging graphic computing, with AMIGA and MACINTOSH. I immediately decided to abandon the airbrush and go digital (less messy !). At the same time, I began practicing astronomical observation, as a modest amateur.
During the 90s, I continued to observe sky and I perfected my knowledge in 3D and animation, then I decided to started freelancing. I realized 3D video sequences for different CD-ROM, advertising first, and then scientific (COSMOS - Montparnasse Multimedia - 1997) In 1998, I also made short video sequences and a few "Full Dome" images for the planetariums of Paris (CITE DES SCIENCES - CITY OF SCIENCES ) and Toulouse (CITE DE L'ESPACE - CITY OF SPACE ).
- (My best memory: a whole night spent comfortably seated in the planetarium of Toulouse to synchronize my images with the music and videos of the show, with the super  friendly team of the museum - Thanks to Marc Moutin).
I really started my career as an illustrator in Astronomy in 1998 by carrying out for 2 years the illustrations for the popular magazine L'ASTRONOMIE PRATIQUE (PRACTICAL ASTRONOMY - Editions HACHETTE). 105 weekly issues !  After that, In 2005, I realized the illustrations of the book of the scientific journalist Erick Seinandre, L'ASTRONOMIE FACILE (EASY ASTRONOMY) published by the editor BORDAS/LAROUSSE.
From 2001 to 2012, I worked as a specialist in astronomy for the leading French science popularization magazine, SCIENCE & VIE - SCIENCE & LIFE . In parallel, I collaborated, always as specialist in astronomy, with the other French magazines of popularization science (LA RECHERCHE - THE RESEARCH , SCIENCES et AVENIR - SCIENCES and FUTURE - POUR LA SCIENCE - FOR THE SCIENCE - French edition of the SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN) . Some of my illustrations were later republished by different European magazines, like : WELT DER WUNDER (in Germany), MUY INTERESANTE (in Spain), and FOCUS (in Italy). In 2011, I also realized an illustration about the M31galaxy for the JOURNAL of CNRS ( FRENCH NATIONAL CENTER FOR SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH ). This illustration was then exposed, in large format, in an astronomic exhibition at the PALAIS DE LA DECOUVERTE ( Palace of Discovery ) in Paris. From 2012 to 2016, I illustrated almost every month the central "double pages" of the magazine CIEL & ESPACE, published by the French Astronomical Society.
- (What I find the most ironic: Although I have always been a dunce in math, some of my pictures are now used to illustrate the textbooks of physics  and maths to prepare the Leaving certificate in the french schools).
Beside this work in astronomy, I have never forgotten my passion for astronautics. From 2002, I first worked for the French Space Agency (CNES) to realize artist's views of satellites, rockets and space programs, and after, for the European Space Agency (ESA), with whom I still collaborate today. I have illustrated about 50 satellites program, the best known being the GALILEO constellation, the European GPS system made by the ESA.
- (My greatest pride is to have seen my images decorating the fairings of the Ariane 5 rocket, launched at Kourou from 2008 to 2015, to put in orbit the ATVs cargo ships to the ISS. Now, I can say that my pictures have really been in space - it's a real Space Art !)
The software that I use too realize my images are CINEMA 4D for 3D modeling, render and animation, and of course, ADOBE PHOTOSHOP, for the 2D painting and Photo editing. And 30 years later, I'm still a macintosh user.




After the lecture there will be a social reception in The Lombard and we encourage all of you to come along for a chat.
All are welcome to attend and free food will be kindly provided by The Lombard.

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A prize draw will be held after the lecture.

Booking Information

Date Monday 5th November
Subject to change - please check back later
Time 8:00p.m.

Physics Bldg, Physics Department , Fitzgerald Building, Trinity College Dublin.
There is an entrance on Lincoln Place (not far from the Merrion Square end of TCD). If you get the DART or bus to Pearse St, or drive. Use the Science Gallery entrance on Pearse Street (near the corner with Westland Row) There are maps here:  Here

Parking: Mark Street , Marks Lane , Lombard St. East .

Free Parking on the above streets after 7pm
Click HERE for a building map of Trinity College campus
Click HERE for Map of area

Admission €10 (€5 Astronomy Ireland members and concessions)
Tickets where possible should be booked in advance. Tickets can also be purchased at the door on the night, please come along 15 minutes early to accommodate.

Book online below

Call 086 06 46 555 to book tickets over the phone using Debit/ Credit Card
Send a cheque/ PO/ Draft, made payable to Astronomy Ireland to PO BOX 2888, Dublin 5.


This lecture is also available to people nationwide on DVD.
To order a copy of the DVD simply:
Order by credit/ debit card online below OR
call 086 06 46 555
Alternatively post a Cheque or postal order to: Astronomy Ireland, PO. Box 2888, Dublin 5.
Cost: DVD's cost €10 each incl P&P (€5 Astronomy Ireland members)

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Acknowledgment: Astronomy Ireland would like to thank the TCD Astrophysics Research Group for hosting AI public lectures in Trinity College Dublin.

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