But sometimes, science and art aren't so different. In November, NASA's Global Climate Change Group released the most stunning images taken by satellites and astronauts in space.
Many of these images are in false color, which scientists use to display images and features that aren't usually visible to the naked eye.
No, this isn't a scene from a sci-fi movie — this spacesuit is empty. Dubbed SuitSat-1, this unneeded Russian space suit was filled with old clothes and launched to orbit the Earth in 2006.
This is the Mississippi River, pictured just south of Memphis, Tennessee in 2003. You can see the blocky shapes of towns and fields surrounding the river. Countless oxbow lakes — which are formed as the river changes course — can be seen in the image as well.
This is the Lena River in Russia, one of the largest river systems in the world. It's also an important breeding ground for many Siberian species.
This is the Dasht-e Kevir, or Great Salt Desert, the largest desert in Iran. It's primarily an uninhabited wasteland, composed of mud and salt marshes.
Here's a natural color image of one of the islands of New Caledonia, a remote archipelago 750 miles off the coast of Australia. The paler blue is shallower water, while the dark blue is the deep sea.
This false-color image shows Western Australia in 2013. It depicts the rich sediment and vegetation patterns of a tropical estuary.