The Back Story

Very Large Array in San Agustin, New Mexico

The Very Large Array (VLA), one of the world’s premier astronomical radio observatories, consists of 27 radio antennas in a Y-shaped configuration on the Plains of San Agustin, 50 miles west of Socorro, N.M.
Credit: NRAO/AUI

An extraterrestrial photographer, somewhere in very deep space, is uncontrollably moving through the vast expanses outside of our own relatively tiny world. After being ejected from the vessel and trajectory in which he’d been traveling, he is now locked into a heavenly line of momentum that he cannot change.

His people were involved in an unidentified conflict, during which their ship and bodies had sustained heart-breaking damage. He was ejected while trying to assess the damage. Speeding through space, isolated, he is alone with his thoughts, taking photos and recording his thoughts, likely in hopes to make contact with his loved ones.

On Earth, technicians at the Very Large Array in New Mexico are unwittingly intercepting his messages and deep space photographs. When they realized the nature of the data packets they received, they consciously chose to make the messages known to the public. Afraid of White House and NSA reprisals for their conscientious objections to forced silence, they have hidden a multitude of technical files which document the photographer’s location and the means by which the messages have been verified.