Finding aliens around Jupiter


Create your own ‘astroart’ as we explore the life we might find swimming around an alien ocean.

Could extra-terrestrial life be swimming in an alien ocean in orbit around Jupiter? The icy moon Europa was first observed by Galileo as a dot orbiting Jupiter. However, it was the 20th century discovery of an icy crust and evidence of a water ocean beneath that captured the interest of scientists.

Through the years, many have wondered what could be swimming around in this vast water ocean. Scientists like Astrobiologist Tara Salter hope to find some answers in the next decade as the NASA Europa Clipper mission arrives looking for signs of life.

In this Explore at Home event Tara will explain what we might find as artist Ash Wheeler shows you how to create your own out of this world alien landscape art.

If you'd like to have a go at making your own astroart, Ash recommends having these materials ready:

  • thick paper or canvas (choose whatever sizing you like)
  • a few small paint brushes
  • water cup
  • paint colours: blue, red, yellow, black and white (these will be mixed to make shades of grey, red and blue)
  • paint thinner (optional)
  • protective wear and a painting rag
  • pencil and eraser
  • ruler and something round to draw around
  • source images of your liking (Europa landscape, Jupiter, icy landscapes, geysers)

You can see Ash's finished artwork on this page, along with images showing her process.

Creating the background

Painting the background for space art

Mixing the paint colours

Paint colours for space art

Ash's finished moon artwork