Benjamin Grant's Daily Overview images looking back at Earth from space are a cosmic revelation that are meant to re-create the sense of awe and wonder for our planet that astronauts experience, often referred to as "the Overview Effect."
Not many of us turn our hobbies into something with a larger purpose, but that's exactly what business consultant Grant did. His fascination with outer space became a mission to provide as many people as possible with the "spiritual and meditative experience that comes from realizing our place in the universe."
The curated images focus our attention "on the places and moments where human activity - for better or worse - has shaped the landscape of our planet."
Astronauts on the International Space Station often say they spend a lot of time "Earth-gazing." These images allow those of who are Earthbound to do the same.
Brock Reservoir, Gordons Well, California
By CBSNews.com Senior Photo Editor Radhika Chalasani
The flatness of the perspective from above creates a distinct point of view which highlights the patterns, shapes and colors... the abstract beauty of the places and things seen. Grant says he hopes to turn our heads with the sheer beauty of the aesthetics, and in doing so aims to inspire us to take greater care of the planet and be more aware of our impact.
The collection of images, composed from satellite imagery provided by Digital Globe, are minimally processed and shared on his website, Tumblr page and Instagram feed, garnering a large following.
Spiral Jetty - Great Salt Lake, Utah
An earthwork sculpture by Robert Smithson - consists of a 1,500-foot-long, 15-foot-wide couterclockwise coil jutting from the northeastern shore.
The 26-year-old Grant's own inspiration for this project came from a fortuitously bad search result in Apple Maps. As a member of his company's space club, he was preparing a lecture on satellites and how mapping software worked. A search for Earth, which he thought would show him a zoomed out image of the planet, instead took him to an image of pivot irrigation circles in Earth, Texas.
It was he said, "the most beautiful thing I've ever seen."
Center pivot Irrigation - Copeland Kansas
The circles are created when lines of sprinklers, powered by electric motors, rotate 360 degrees to evenly irrigate crops.
David Beaver, a cofounder of the Overview Institute, relates a story from one of the astronauts explaining how their total focus was on the moon. , "We weren't thinking about looking back at the Earth," the astronaut told him, but "it may well have been the most important reason we went."
Incheon Bridge, South Korea
A cable-stayed bridge that stretches 21.4 kms (13.3 miles) from Yeongjong Island to the mainland of Incheon in South Korea cost more than two billion dollars to complete.
Grant believes that in looking at these images, "We will understand that the borders we see from space are not the ones we obsess about on Earth." An understanding that gives us a larger perspective on life and how interconnected things are.
Olympic Dam Mine, South Australia
The facility contains the largest known deposit of uranium and the fourth largest deposit of copper in the world. Iron oxide, gold and silver are also extracted from the site.
Aircraft Boneyard - the Southern California Logistics Airport in Victorville, California.
The facility is a massive transitional hub for commercial aircraft and its boneyard contains more than 150 retired planes.
The development is set to consist of 15 connected, artificial islands.
Desert Breath, Hurghada, Egypt
A double-spiral art piece located in the desert near Hurghada on the Red Sea.
Because the 89 protruding cones that make up one spiral are constructed from the sand that was dug to create the 89 depressed cones of the other spiral, in due time, with erosion, the area of approximately one million square feet will revert back to its original state.
The city was founded on April 21, 1960 in order to move the capital from Rio de Janeiro to a more central location within Brazil.
The design resembles an airplane from above.
Angkor Wat - Cambodia
The temple complex is the largest religious monument in the world (first Hindu, then Buddhist). The 820,000 square meter site features a moat and forest that harmoniously surround a massive temple at its center.
Crescent Dunes Solar Energy Project, Tonopah, Nevada
The project powers up to 75,000 homes during peak electricity periods.
The waste and byproducts from mining operations are pumped into the Gribbens Basin next to the Empire and Tilden iron ore mines in Negaunee, Michigan.
This Overview shows approximately one square mile of the basin.
The Port of Hamburg
Known as Germany's "Gateway to the World," the facility is accessed by 28 ships, 200 freight trains, and 5,000 trucks. The port moves 132.3 million tons of cargo each year - roughly 1/3 of the mass of all living human beings.
Mussel nurseries - Galicia, Spain
Mussel cultivation in the Ría de Arousa saline estuary off the coast here is the highest in the world. Floating rafts contain the nurseries where the mollusks grow on ropes until they are large enough to harvest.
Residential communities in Delray Beach, Florida.
The Glastonbury Festival in Pilton, England.
The annual five-day music event was attended by more than 135,000 people. Camping tents dot the landscape.
Palm Jumeirah - Dubai, UAE
An artificial island that was created with 3.3 billion cubic meters of sand and 7 million tons of rock.
Orange trucks - Auburndale, Florida
Truck beds filled with oranges sit in the parking lot by the Cutrale Citrus factory. The U.S. produces approximately 18 billion pounds of oranges each year.
Moab Potash Ponds - Intrepid Potash Mine in Moab, Utah
The mine produces muriate of potash, a potassium-containing salt used widely by farmers in fertilizer. The salt is pumped to the surface from underground brines and dried in massive solar ponds that vibrantly extend across the landscape. As the water evaporates over the course of 300 days, the salts crystallize out.
The water is dyed bright blue to reduce the amount of time it takes for the potash to crystallize; darker water absorbs more sunlight and heat.
Santosh Park, Uttam Nagar - Delhi, India
Delhi contains approximately 11 million residents. The neighborhoods of Santosh Park and Uttam Nagar contain some of the city's most built-up and densely populated land.
China Potash Solar Ponds - the Lop Nur Potash Solar Ponds.
Located in China's resource-rich but moisture-poor Xinjiang region, the Taklimakan Desert is a dismal location for agricultural activity. However, the sandy landscape is incredibly rich with potash. This form of potassium salt provides a major nutrient required for plant growth, making it a key ingredient in fertilizer.
The salt is pumped to the surface from underground deposits and dried in massive solar ponds that vibrantly extend across the landscape for more than 13 miles.
Olive Trees - plantations on the hills of Córdoba, Spain
Many of the images Benjamin Grant has curated will be published in an upcoming book by Penguin Random House in 2016. There are also exhibitions in San Francisco and Munich planned.
To read more: "Leaving Earth to feel closer to it" - CBS News
To see more: Daily Overview