More Than Meets The Eye
Featured celestial objects
Moon
Venus
Mars
Jupiter
Saturn
Alcor/Mizar
Pleiades

Ring Nebula
Crab Nebula

Orion Nebula
Lagoon/Trifid Nebula
Albireo
Epsilon Lyrae
Hercules Cluster

M6/M7
Milky Way
Andromeda Galaxy

More Than Meets The Eye

After telescope viewing sessions, how many times have you heard comments like these? "Yeah, I thought I saw something — but I'm not sure what it was I was supposed to see . . ." and "But I thought it was gonna look real big and colorful . . . that fuzzy blotch is all there is"?

Most planetarium programs show excellent images of planets and galaxies, taken from spacecraft or big observatories. Then, when people look at the real thing through a telescope or binoculars, they're understandably dismayed that what they see "isn't like in the planetarium".

Yet photographs taken through low-power instruments still look like photographs, not like what someone actually sees with the naked eye.

So artist Tim W. Kuzniar created original paintings depicting various planets and deep-sky objects as people can actually expect to see them using binoculars and four- or eight-inch telescopes. More Than Meets The Eye features that artwork, then compares the naked-eye views from our back yard (or planetarium parking lot) with observatory astrophotos and spacecraft images.

We briefly discuss the effects of atmospheric turbulence; that stars have different colors; and how only time exposures produce brilliant colors in galaxies and nebulae. The point is made that, although we don't see celestial objects in glorious color from our back yard, to know that a faint smudge is really a stellar city or a place where stars are born can spark the imagination, and make the search worthwhile.

More Than Meets The Eye includes winter, spring, and summer night-sky scenes, so something mentioned in the show will be prominent in the sky that night, no matter when you show it. If you don't have a local panorama scene already installed, the show includes a 3-section partial pan of a generic "backyard", and a single slide of the same artwork for use in a wide-angle-lens projector if you don't have a pan system. A "ripple wheel"-type special-effect to simulate a telescopic view with atmospheric turbulence is suggested, but not required.

More Than Meets The Eye will be a perennial favorite; a work-horse for your planetarium show schedule, and the perfect way to start out the evening's star party!


In 1987, we originally produced this show as a 17-minute mini-program, NESS VIGNETTE #2, with 32 slides. In 1993, we expanded on the concept and created the 31-minute show, based on and including all the material from the old. We simply look at more objects (the ones in red above) in the longer version. On the More Than Meets The Eye CD, we provide both soundtracks, so you can program either one or both, whichever fits your schedule. The 1993 EXPANDED EDITION of More Than Meets The Eye was produced in cooperation with SPITZ, INC.


Running time: 30:44
Age level: General public
Year of production: 1987, 1993
Words expertly crafted by Carolyn Collins Petersen
Stereo soundtrack with original music by Geodesium

The educational focus of this show is to discuss objects in the night sky and teach stargazing techniques. These ideas are woven throughout the program, and help relate the information presented in the show to the lives of students, families, and the general public.

Show content is relevant in the following subject areas:

Earth and Space sciences:
  • Sky objects: the Moon, planets, stars, constellations, star clusters, nebulae, and galaxies
Physical Sciences:
  • Star colors and temperatures
  • Atmospheric effects on light from celestial objects
History of Science/Science as a human endeavor:
  • Astronomy as an enjoyable backyard hobby
  • Astronomy as an approachable science
  • Astronomical research and discoveries
  • Missions to the Moon
  • Spacecraft probes of the outer planets
  • Observatory studies of stars, nebulae, galaxies

The print-friendly flyer for this show includes this page's info.

LOGOS (select for high-resolution)

More Than Meets The Eye promo art
(1056 x 712 pixels, 200K)
More Than Meets The Eye promo art
(1056 x 712 pixels, 200K)
More Than Meets The Eye promo art
(1056 x 712 pixels, 11K)
More Than Meets The Eye promo art
(1056 x 712 pixels, 200K)
More Than Meets The Eye promo art
(1056 x 712 pixels, 11K)

To download to your computer, right-click on the link, then select "Save Target As..." or select the image, then "File->Save..."

TIP: To avoid generational JPEG compression loss, be sure to change the file type to something non-compressed, say TIF or TGA, when you work with the images in your image editing program.
  • None yet!

Shows created by Loch Ness Productions come with English language soundtracks standard. Translated soundtracks are provided as additional items, not substitutes for the English ones.

Don't see the language you want? Let's work together to create it. Read more here!