Some Unearthly Landscapes Around The World That Would Make Extraordinary Space Art Paintings

lunar footprint painting
First Footprint on the Moon

Are you looking for some inspiration or ideas for that next space art painting? As you can imagine, space artists have a bit of a challenge when it comes to reference material for their cosmic paintings. After all is said and done, they can’t travel off to some other planet to paint on location. One way for these artists to remedy this situation is to travel around the world in search of suitable typography that will make them feel like they’re on another planet.

Below is a list of earthly locations right here on Earth with some rather surreal looking places featuring lunar-like rock formations or “out-of-this-world” looking dunes that, when combined with a little imagination, would make for some rather extraordinary paintings of other world places. This is by no means a comprehensive list and there are no photos, however, if you do a search for each location that is listed below in “Google images” you will find some suitable images to work with.


space art painting Neil Armstrong astronautFirst Man on The Moon
Space Art by Teresa Bernard
24″ x 18″
Oils on gallery wrap stretched canvas

>> More info


  • Antelope Canyon, Arizona
  • surreal landscapes
    Avenue of the Baobabs, Madagascar

    Avenue of the Baobabs, Madagascar

  • Badab-e Surt, Iran
  • Berca Mud Volcanoes, Romania
  • Black Desert, Egypt
  • Bisti/De-Na-Zin Wilderness, New Mexico
  • Capadoccia, Turkey
  • Cano Cristales, Serranía De La Macarena, Colombia
  • Cariboo Region, British Columbia, Canada
  • Cave In Algarve, Portugal
  • Cave of Crystals, Mexico
  • Cenote Angelita, Mexico
  • Champagne Pool, Waiotapu, New Zealand
  • Chocolate Hills, Bohol, Philippines
  • Dallol Volcano, Ethiopia
  • Danakil Depression, Ethiopia
  • Danau Kelimutu, Nusa Tenggara Timur, Indonesia
  • Devils Tower National Monument, Wyoming
  • other worldly landscape
    Devil’s Town, Serbia

    Devil’s Town, Serbia

  • Dragonblood Trees, Socotra, Yemen
  • Egerszalok, Hungary
  • Emerald Ice On Baikal Lake, Russia
  • Eye of the Sahara, Mauritania
  • Eyes Of The Devil – Prohodna Cave, Bulgaria
  • Fingal’s Cave, Scotland
  • Fly Ranch Geyser, Nevada
  • Gates To Hell, Derweze, Turkmenistan
  • Giant’s Causeway, Northern Ireland
  • Glowworms Cave, New Zealand
  • Grand Canyon, Arizona
  • Grand Prismatic Spring, Wyoming
  • Hang Son Doong Cave, Vietnam
  • Hornocal Mountains, Argentina
  • Ischigualasto Provincial Park, Argentina
  • Jökulsárlón, Iceland
  • Kerið – Grímsnes, Island
  • Kerlingarfjoll, Iceland
  • Koekohe Beach, New Zealand
  • Lake Natron, Tanzania
  • Lençóis Maranhenses National Park, Brazil
  • Marble Caves, Chile
  • Meteora, Greece
  • Monte Roraima, Venezuela
  • Moon Valley, Chapada dos Veadeiros National Park, Brazil
  • Mt. Roraima, Venezuela
  • Naica Mine, Mexico
  • Namib Desert, Namibia
  • Nishinoshima, Japan
  • Odle, Dolomites, Italy
  • Painted Dunes, Lassen Volcanic National Park, USA
  • Pamukkale, Turkey
  • Pancake Rocks, New Zealand
  • Perito Moreno Glacier, Argentina
  • Pinnacles Desert, Western Australia
  • alien landscape
    Rainbow Mountains, Vinicunca, Peru

    Rainbow Mountains, Vinicunca, Peru

  • Red Beach, Panjin, China
  • Rock Cave, Petra, Jordan
  • Roraima, Venezuela
  • Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia
  • Salvador Dali Desert, Uyuni, Bolivia
  • Seven Colors Rocks, Mauritius
  • Seven Giants, Russia
  • Shilin Stone Forest, China
  • Skaftafell Glacier, Iceland
  • Sossusvlei, Namibia
  • Spotted Lake, Canada
  • The Wave, Arizona
  • The White Desert, Egypt
  • Tianzi Mountains, China
  • Tongariro National Park, New Zealand
  • Tsingy De Bemaraha, Madagascar
  • Tunnel of Love, Ukraine
  • Twelve Apostles, Australia
  • Uluru, Australia
  • Valley of Fire State Park, Nevada
  • Valley of the Moon, Atacama Desert, Chile
  • Wave Rock, Australia
  • White Sands National Monument, New Mexico
  • Whitehaven Beach, Australia
  • Window To Hell, Kamchatka, Russia
  • Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
  • Zhangye Danxia National Geological Park, China

This is by no means an exhaustive list, nor is it in any particular order. When you visit these places be sure to take your camera along to take lots of reference photos for your paintings. Once you get back to your studio you will have lots of fun as you immortalize your memories of these places on canvas wall art.

Did your favorite “alien” landscape location make the list? If not, and you think it would make an extraordinary space art painting, feel free to add it below in comments.

Additional Reading

Becoming an Artist of Space Paintings

Space Art by Teresa Bernard


Marketing Your Space Paintings Online

There are a number of ways a space artist can go about marketing their space art. For example, spray paint artists are more likely to sell their art on the sidewalk to onlookers as they watch while the artist creates their space art illustrations. More traditional artists, however, will use a different approach to getting their compositions into the public’s hands. Here are just a few of the methods they use:


space art painting Neil Armstrong astronaut“First Man on the Moon”
Space Art by Teresa Bernard
24″ x 18″
Oils on gallery wrap stretched canvas

>> More info


(1) They will solicit business owners to display their artwork sometimes offering a commission on every painting sold. Such businesses can include, but are not limited to cafés, banks and art galleries.
(2) Still other ways are to attend art fairs and festivals, and art exhibitions where they can display and sell their paintings. This method requires an investment in displays, tables, and canopies, etc., and also requires the artist to be onsite for the duration of the event.
(3) However, there is one venue that is often overlooked by artists and that is the Internet. It is a smart artist who is really serious about selling their artwork to put up a website for showcasing their creations. However it doesn’t stop there, now they must get visitors to their website. The more visitors, the greater  potential there is for selling their paintings.

Marketing Online

If you want to market your space paintings online then are a few things you will need.


lunar landscape painting on canvas“Moonset”
Space Art by Teresa Bernard
20″ x 16″
Oils on gallery wrap stretched canvas

>> More info


  1. The most important thing the artist will need is a website. This can be developed using a do-it-yourself template or you can hire a web designer to create one for you. Many graphic web designers are also artists themselves and can build a website that you would be very proud to display your cosmic works of art on.
  2. A PayPal account or some other kind of merchant account so you can accept payments over the Internet. These funds can be deposited directly into your bank accounts. PayPal offers the ability to provide the artist with some “buy now” buttons and will process all transactions for you. They do charge a small fee to do this, however. The upside of this is you can offer your customer a safe and secure method to purchase your paintings without having to have a shopping cart on your website.
  3. A sound SEO strategy is key to getting traffic to your site. SEO is an acronym for “search engine optimization”. Getting  traffic to your site is of utmost importance because every visitor to your site is a potential customer. Without traffic you will not make any sales online.
  4. There is one other method that needs to be considered and that is to list your space paintings on sites like “eBay”, “Etsy”, and “FineArtAmerica”, to name but a few. These sites will charge a fee when you sell one of your paintings, but it might be a better way to go if you don’t want to manage a website yourself.

For more information about where to market your space paintings online see articles listed below.

Finally, selling your space art paintings online can be a very gratifying and lucrative experience for you. It’s definitely worth your time and effort to use this method.

Additional Reading

Pricing Your Artwork — Taking A Two Step Approach

Ways To Market Your Artwork

Becoming an Artist of Space Paintings

So you want to learn how to paint space paintings. Learning how to draw and paint planets, moons and landscapes of alien worlds can be a lot of fun. Space art is such a fun genre of painting and, indeed, a favorite one for many artists. Some artists specialize in just this one genre of art, preferring to leave behind the boundaries of Earth for some otherworldly landscapes. They have become recognized as “space artists” or “astronomical artists”.

Reference Material for Space Art

As you can imagine, astronomical artists have a bit of a challenge when it comes to reference material for their space paintings. After all it isn’t like they can go out to some off world location to paint. They must rely on photos supplied from various sources or paint from pure imagination. A few pull out their telescopes or stare up into the night sky for inspiration. NASA can be a source for some reference photos that can be used to create space art from. Various other agencies, such as the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Astronomy Magazine, or National Geographic, among others. (However, you must be careful not to violate copyright if using images from magazines.) All of these can be a source of reference photos from which to compose your space art paintings from. “Googling” keywords such as NASA photos, space flight photos, etc. can render a large selection to choose from.


space art painting Neil Armstrong astronaut“First Man on The Moon”
Space Art by Teresa Bernard
24″ x 18″
Oils on gallery wrap stretched canvas

>> More info


Still many space artists choose to travel all around the world looking for suitable typography to do their preliminary sketch work from for their space paintings. So much so, they become students of geography and most notably any type of land formation that can be transformed into an off world landscape on some distant planet. They are guided by science and their imaginations to compose striking moonscapes or other landscapes of alien worlds.

Some of the most beautiful space paintings ever seen had their beginnings using a popular software program called “Photoshop”. This computer program has the ability to assist artists in composing their paintings. Many artists frequently use this software program to compose their paintings. They can easily do this because the program allows them to move elements in a photo around, remove other distracting parts and even combine several photos into one to see what it will look like before transferring the composition to canvas. By composing your painting this way, it will allow you to work out problematic areas of your painting before you even put brush to canvas. In composing a composition for space art, the artist can take the space shuttle from a NASA photo and combine it with an image of a distant planet taken from a photo and include some bizarre rock formations from yet another photo. Add a black sky sprinkle it with stars, space gas and other space debris. You now have the makings for a very exciting space painting.

What to Include in Your Space Paintings

If you are interested in creating space paintings there are certain elements that you might want to include in your painting to make it qualify as space art. Such things as nebula, stars of course, perhaps a moon, a planet, and maybe even some space dust. These would make a very nice subject matter for space art. Another painting might have the same, but a few additional elements you might consider adding to you composition is a space craft of some sort or even a distant sun. Rugged alien landscapes make great space art too, especially if you include a recognizable planet like Saturn or Jupiter in the dark sky. Alien landscapes could include a vast horizon of sharp mountain formations rising to meet the sky. Pot holes created by meteors and meteorites hitting the surface are a great feature that makes the surface look more alien too. Frozen planetoids can be the subject of your painting. The possibilities are simply endless since you are only limited by your imagination.


lunar landscape painting on canvas“Moonset”
Space Art by Teresa Bernard
20″ x 16″
Oils on gallery wrap stretched canvas

>> More info


Supplies You Will Need To Create Space Paintings

If you want to be an astronomical artist, you will need some supplies to get yourself started. The supplies you will need is canvas, either board or stretched, tubes of oil or acrylic paint, an assortment of brushes, and some medium. For more information about what art supplies you need, see article titled Complete List of Art Supplies for The Beginning Oil Painter.