On December 21, 1968, three humans in a rocket left our planet for a six-day, round-trip trip to the Moon. The NASA Apollo 8 mission had astronauts Frank Borman, James Lovell, and William Anders flying hundreds of thousands of miles across space, becoming the first humans to see the entirety of Earth at once with their own eyes. They orbited the moon 10 times, and came within 70 miles of the surface, taking photographs. On Christmas Eve, Anders shot one of the most famous and powerful pictures in history, Earthrise, a dizzyingly gorgeous look back at our pretty blue orb, contrasted against the forbidding blackness of space and the challenging landscape of the moon.
Apollo 8 Commander Borman famously described the moon’s landscape as “a vast, lonely, forbidding expanse of nothing.”