The biggest EVE image ever made?

  • As some of you know I've been working on a personal project involving code and a large amount of image data. The result is possibly the biggest EVE image ever made with a final resolution of 115200x72000 (~8.3 gigapixels). That's equivalent to a grid of 60x60 (=3600) monitors at 1920x1200 with the file weighing in at close to 50Gb.

    It's an "image of images" from my EVE gallery spanning the last two years since I first started taking pictures. Even though the concept is not new and has been done before I've always wanted to try and make something like this myself. In tribute to one of my best sources of inspiration for all things space I'm naming it the "EVE Deep Field" πŸ™‚

    EVE Deep Field

    To go from idea to finished image I had to create some custom tools to automate the most time consuming steps and process all the image data. Starting out with no tools and just the images in my Flickr gallery, this is how it was made.

    The first task was to download all the original size images from my Flickr gallery. After creating a Flickr API key I wrote a Python script to make all the API calls to get the image URLs and download the images.

    Some of the older images contained text-tags baked into the image itself. Leaving them in or cropping them away would reduce quality in the finished piece so I had to manually re-export the originals without the tags.

    No more tags, great! However, images from different dates had different original resolutions depending on the kind of monitor setup I had at the time they were taken. I decided to go with a tile size of 1200x1200 pixels to match the lowest resolution images as scaling down generally looks way better than scaling up.

    I tried to automate the cropping with a Photoshop batch process but the results from just cropping out the center square didn’t look good for most images. With no easy way around it I ended up manually cropping all the images.

    All tiles prepared the magic can finally begin! Another Python script was used to analyze each image and calculate the average brightness, writing the results to a file.

    Before the next step I had to decide on a source image and the number of tiles to use. For the source I chose the signature image from my F4R2-Q album, which is currently the most viewed and favorited image in my gallery.


    Time to switch to C++ and openFrameworks to make it easier to visualize the next set of calculations. The source image has an aspect ratio of 16:10 and after some quick mock-ups I decided to go with a 96x60 (=5760) tile layout to achieve the look I wanted.


    Each grid area on the source image was analyzed to calculate its average brightness similar to the tiles.


    Using the brightness values from the source image, I load the tile brightness data and find the closest match. Rules are applied to make sure no image is placed within three tiles of an existing tile using the same image. The color shows where individual images are placed.


    The final tile-map is used to create several batch scripts to help automate image stitching with the free and excellent tool ImageMagick. Each individual row can be automatically stitched together but my computer can’t handle putting the finished rows together at these sizes.

    The rows are manually imported and aligned one by one using Photoshop. It’s time consuming but at least it works. The source image is then scaled up and composited together with the tiles to achieve the final result.

    An example from the original size.




    EVE Deep Field
    Flickr Album

  • @Razorien


  • Tempest was the ship that brought me to EVE in the first place. One image from "EVE Never Fades" was enough :). I've done insane amount of L4s in it. I even had Large Artillery Specialization 5 until extractors... To this day I'm very sad to remember that I had a chance to buy model and opt out of it for some reason :(.
    edit: This goes without saying. This image is insanely beautiful.

  • That's an amazing achievement. Serious kudos there. CCP need to be told.

    Just out of interest: what are the physical dimensions of the image according to Photoshop's 'Image Size'? Are we talking billboard? Another reason why CCP need to be told because this would look great hanging over the door at FanFest.

  • Wow! I have known about this project for awhile but hearing the details of the effort it took to make it happen makes it waaaay more impressive than I already thought it was! Congrats and many thanks for your continued and amazing activities that boost the Signal!

  • That is bloody awesome!

  • <jaw drops in amazement> Wow, Amazing stuff.

  • @Razorien I need like a MEGALIKE button, as like just doesn't quite cut it....

  • That's amazing work πŸ™‚

  • @Razorien You continue to do amazing work, this is pretty dang impressive and visually striking. Hats off to you good sir.

  • Absolutely breathtaking! I got into EVE for the art/graphics (and the spaceships :)) Your work is amazing!

  • @Remarka Thank you. The Tempest is a really cool looking ship and I've recently trained BS skills so I can fly these around myself for more pictures. It's not always reliable to find one 'in the wild' when you want to. πŸ˜„

  • @Cassandra-Habalu The first comment I got on reddit was from CCP Darwin asking for the original size. Turns out a lot of file formats break at these sizes so I'm still trying to get it exported in a more sane size than 50Gb. Am on a laptop now with the main computer busy trying to make that happen. πŸ™‚

  • @Cassandra-Habalu 115200 x 72000 should be 384 x 240 inches at 300dpi. You would only benefit from 300dpi if you are going to be looking at it as close as a magazine though so you could realistically print much larger and retain very good quality.

  • @Mynxee It was a lot of work but now when all tiles are prepared and with the code in place, making more of these will only take a fraction of the time.

  • @Jojo-Gunne Thank you! Are you considering making some space-art of your own?

  • @Razorien So there will be moar?!? πŸ™‚

  • @Thrice-Hapus I'm not saying there won't be. πŸ˜‰

  • @Razorien 32 feet x 20 feet - three-quarters the length of an articulated lorry!

    The file could be cut into a bunch of large squares so you'd have say 20 individual files that, when printed out, can be assembled into the final image. Like this.

  • @Cassandra-Habalu said in The biggest EVE image ever made?:

    @Razorien 32 feet x 20 feet - three-quarters the length of an articulated lorry!

    I'll take two, printed on high quality glossy paper, to be framed and put up on my wall house!

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