We are used to see the epic, awe-inspiring, perfect photos from the golden age of NASA, during the Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo missions. Those are not the photos that you will find in Drewatts Bloomsbury's auction. These are all pretty shitty—poorly exposed, badly framed, out of focus, or just plain boring.

But while these photos would not be featured in a book like Full Moon, some may argue that many of them feel like art. In fact, for the Instagram, post-vanguardist generations, these images are art—like their blurry, oversaturated pictures of their feet and food.

The reality is that these images weren't intended to be this way. These were supposed to be picture perfect and scientifically valuable, informational, not artistic. But it's hard to take photos in space. Crap pictures were bound to happen. Some of them are just plain boring—"I meant to take a photo of my astronaut pal, but that's what I got: A crappy skewed photo of a rock and two legs." It is ok. Astronauts are humans, just like us. Even Ansel Adams took crappy pictures. We just saw the good ones.

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We turn these photos into beautiful objects worth buying because we project ourselves into them, because of the subject matter. They resonate within many of us because they were taken in freaking space—and on the Moon! That makes them better and more interesting than any of the stupid photos I (and most humans) have ever taken.

Above: Geology at Spur Crater's Station 7, EVA 2, Apollo 15, August 1971

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Bluish halo around Alan Bean exploring the Ocean of Storms, EVA 1, Apollo 12, November 1969

Close-up of David Scott covered with lunar dust, EVA 2, Apollo 15, August 1971

Charles Duke assembling a double core near the Lunar Rover, EVA 3, Apollo 16, April 1972

Lunar Ionosphere and Atmosphere detector, EVA 1, Apollo 12, November 1969

Charles Duke at the front of the Lunar Rover, EVA 3, Apollo 16, April 1972

John Young changing a film magazine in the Hasselblad camera, Apollo 16, EVA 2, April 1972

First deep space EVA on August 5, 1971, by Al Worden

The LM reflects a circular flare, EVA 1, Apollo 14, February 1971

Sun glare over Alan Bean carrying scientific equipments out from the LM, EVA 1, Apollo 12, November 1969

The crappy photos of NASA's golden era you never get to see

Alan Shepard on the lunar surface, EVA 1, Apollo 14, February 1971

Astronaut Alan Bean taking his first step on the lunar surface, EVA 1, Apollo 12, November 1969

Pete Conrad and the American flag on the Ocean of Storms, Apollo 12, November 1972

Ronald Evans' EVA, the last in deep space, Apollo 17, December 1972

The ascent stage of the Lunar Module returning from the Moon, Apollo 17, December 1972

Portrait of astronaut Eugene Cernan, explorer of another world, Apollo 17, December 1972

The crappy photos of NASA's golden era you never get to see

First US Spacewalk - Ed White's EVA over New Mexico, Gemini 4, 3 June 1965

Pete Conrad and two US spacecrafts on the surface of the Moon, Apollo 12, November 1969

In-flight portrait of astronaut Charles Conrad, Gemini 5, 21 August 1965

John Glenn inside the Friendship 7 capsule

The Earth illuminated by the Sun during the first orbit, Gemini 3, March 1965

Buzz Aldrin carrying experiment packages, Apollo 11, July 1969

The crappy photos of NASA's golden era you never get to see

First US Spacewalk - Ed White's EVA over South California, Gemini 4, 3 June 1965

The crappy photos of NASA's golden era you never get to see

Neil Armstrong practices a moonwalk, Apollo 11, June 1969

The crappy photos of NASA's golden era you never get to see

Alan Sheppard practicing

The crappy photos of NASA's golden era you never get to see

Safe landing of the Command Module and recovery of the astronauts in the Pacific Ocean, Apollo 13, April 1970

The crappy photos of NASA's golden era you never get to see

The LM "Challenger" seen from the Lunar Rover during the return to the landing site, EVA 3, Apollo 17, December 1972

Thomas Mattingly's spacewalk during the return from the Moon, Apollo 16, April 1972

Last photograph taken on the lunar surface, EVA 3, Apollo 15, August 1971

The Lunar Rover seen from every angle, EVA 3, Apollo 15, August 1971


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