Image Credit & Copyright: Leonardo Julio & Carlos Milovic (Astronomia Pampeana )
Explanation: Is this a painting or a photograph? In this beautiful celestial still life  composed with a cosmic brush, dusty nebula NGC 2170  shines near the image center. Reflecting the light of nearby hot stars, NGC 2170  is joined by other bluish reflection  nebulae, a red emission  region, many dark absorption nebulae , and a backdrop of colorful stars . Like the common household items still life painters  often choose for their subjects, the clouds of gas, dust, and hot stars pictured above  are also commonly found in this setting – a massive, star-forming molecular cloud in the constellation of the Unicorn  (Monoceros ). The giant molecular cloud , Mon R2 , is impressively close, estimated  to be only 2,400 light-years  or so away. At that distance, this canvas  would be over 60 light-years across.