Rhys Taylor's home page
Science, Art and Data Visualisation


As well as data visualisation that turns scientific data sets directly into images, I also do more traditional forms of illustration. These are usually informed by real data but use more creativity to fill in the blanks, or show a concept graphically that couldn't be seen otherwise. So here we have things like planetary and stellar size comparisons, the motion of the Solar System and timelines of the Universe. They aren't just pretty pictures, they are based on reality, but they aren't direct depictions of it either. Which can often be a lot more fun than being limited strictly by the numbers.

Asteroid 1998QE2 : An asteroid that has such low gravity you could easily jump off it and land on its small moon... which is small enough that it could be mistaken for a space station. Also, it would almost certainly float, and it's just a few times larger (in terms of diameter) than the QE2 ocean liner. This is without doubt the greatest asteroid known to man.

Blue Marbles : It's all very well stating how much bigger Jupiter is than the Earth in terms of size and mass, but what do those numbers mean ? This series of charts and two animations attempts to show this more graphically.

The Light of Other SunsWhat would our Solar System look like with a variety of other stars in place of the Sun ? Here you can find out ! From the tiny Proxima Centauri to the mighty VY Canis Majoris and UY Scuti, this series of images and video explores what would happen if we ever happened to invent a terrible star-swapping machine.

Solar System non-VortexHow does the Solar System move through space ? I really wouldn't care, except that a popular video was made demonstrating that the planets trace rather nice helical paths through space. While this is true, it also linked to a lot of other, far more dubious (to say the least) "information". I made my own orthodox version, but this is now redundant because the author has made a far better version which I fully endorse. I'm keeping this one around quite unashamedly for the simple reason that it's oddly popular.

Galaxy Charts : Galaxies come in a bewildering array of shapes and sizes, and these charts attempt  to put them in some kind of context. Our own Milky Way is neither pathetically small nor impressively large. I've used these for both public outreach and academic teaching.

Timeline of the Universe : For a Herschel and Planck outreach exhibition involving Cardiff University, I designed a big floor poster showing the evolution of the Universe, from the Big Bang to the present day. Later a public observatory in Belgium commissioned me to make a bigger, better version. Both versions are available here at lower resolution.

Birthday Cards : For a few years I managed to make Christmas and birthday cards for my friends and family, and here they are.