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Holiday calendar: A child's face, visible from space


A child's face looks up from "Wish," a large-scale artwork in Belfast in Northern Ireland, and that look was captured in a Nov. 3 satellite image.

A child's face stared up from 11 acres' worth of sand, soil, glass, stones and string in Northern Ireland's largest city — and DigitalGlobe's WorldView 2 satellite stared back.

The face, situated on the grounds of the Titanic Belfast tourist attraction, is part of a land-art installation titled "Wish." It was created over the course of a month by Cuban-American artist Jorge Rodriguez-Gerada and a team of volunteers to celebrate this year's Belfast Festival — and a child's wish for a better future.

The portrait is so big that it's best seen from high buildings or from the air. WorldView 2 took a look on Nov. 3, right after the festival. The Titanic museum, which houses exhibits commemorating one of the world's best-known tragedies at sea, is just above the right eye of the face. For more about "Wish" and Titanic Belfast, check out this PhotoBlog feature and this Titanic slideshow.

This particular image is one of DigitalGlobe's top five satellite images of the year, as decided by Facebook fans. Should it be No. 1? You have until Dec. 31 to decide, by "liking" your favorite image in DigitalGlobe's Facebook album. We've already highlighted the other four contenders in our Cosmic Log Space Advent Calendar, which features outer-space views on a daily basis through Christmas.

For still more holiday goodies, check out The Atlantic's Hubble Advent CalendarZooniverse's Advent calendar and the Galileo's Pendulum Science Advent Calendar.

Previously on the Space Advent Calendar:

Alan Boyle is NBCNews.com's science editor. Connect with the Cosmic Log community by "liking" the NBC News Science Facebook page, following @b0yle on Twitter and adding the Cosmic Log page to your Google+ presence. You can also check out "The Case for Pluto," my book about the controversial dwarf planet and the search for new worlds.