Greetings from the stargazer
My name is Derek Reid. I’m the director, editor and executive producer of Sky Candy, an astronomy documentary series and e-learning website that reveals the true nature of the cosmos in all its complexity and beauty.
I call myself “The Stargazer” but I’m not strict about it. You can just call me Derek. Certainly, I have fond memories of looking through the lens of a telescope, seeing the rings of Saturn for the first time. Without a doubt, the hours I keep are closely aligned with those of an amateur astronomer, the kind you might find at a country star party, for
example. In truth, you could use any number of adjectives to describe my professional bent -- Starboy, Skywatcher, Space Cowboy, it’s all good. Overall, I would simply say that the sight of the stars has always made me dream.
The Sky Candy Origin Story
As a devoted stargazer, I am fortunate to earn a living as a science educator and documentary filmmaker. I have a long track record in the astronomy documentary genre in particular. I've directed and edited 16+ hours of broadcast astronomy content in the last few years -- content that is airing on TV around the world right now -- and I consider it my life’s privilege to be able to see so much and so far.
I always dreamed of creating my own documentary series and e-learning website from concept to completion, but I never had the time or resources to seriously consider it. When COVID-19 struck, suddenly I had a lot of at least one of those things. My wife gave me the name “Sky Candy”, told me that history favours the bold, and sent me on a journey to explore the solar system, dive into the Milky Way, investigate dark matter, search for our cosmic origins and travel to the beginning of time -- and do it all using only
100% real footage. I’m happy to report that her instincts were correct, the series was a triumph, and we were ultimately honored with a 2021 Worldfest Houston Special Jury REMI award, the top award in the highly competitive category of best TV Documentary Series.
The Sky Candy Astronomy School
Our journey, and that of countless contributors (so many skilled and creative souls, you all know who you are) culminates with this website, the Sky Candy Astronomy School. Yours, hopefully as gratifying, starts in the same place: a coming together of award-winning documentary films and tirelessly researched educational add-ons that let you learn from home while exploring the real universe. I will leave it to you to decide whether we have succeeded in our quest. I've tried my hardest to ensure that we have.
I’m not sure how many fortunate people get to say this, but I’m doing what I was born to do: watch the sky. I see the stars, I see the planets, I see everything, and it feels good. Now I have an incredible opportunity to use my unique skillset to tell the world all about the real universe, and I feel deeply honored to be able to share my vision (and Hubble’s vision, and VISTA’s vision, etc.) with you.
One More Important Note
In my core I believe that space belongs to no-one and everyone at the same time, and therefore it should be free for all. In that spirit, I have tried to keep my plans and pricing for this website as low as possible. The first two classes cost nothing to participate in.
But 4K television production is certainly not free, nor is website design and hosting. Full disclosure, the entire Sky Candy production was produced and funded exclusively by my company, Trader Multimedia Inc.. I did not accept a single dime from the government nor from any sponsor or organization. Sky Candy is a labor of love, but it came with a considerable price tag.
With this in mind, I humbly ask that if you feel you’ve received more value than what you spent to enroll in the program, I'd be thrilled if you visit our and contribute whatever amount seems right in your heart. You are under no obligation, of course, but everyone who makes a donation will be helping me to continue to produce 100% real astronomy documentaries like Sky Candy 4K, and be acknowledged by name in the newest Sky Candy production (18 more videos and classes) underway now.
On the flip side of this, I encourage anyone who cannot afford the enrollment fee to send me an email, state your case, and I’ll see what I can do to open up the program for you, because every one of us has the right to marvel at the heavens and take possession of its splendor, no matter the night nor the reason.
I truly appreciate your patronage and support of my documentary series and e-learning website.
Enjoy Sky Candy! It’s all for you.
aka The Stargazer
Thank You For Supporting Sky Candy
If you have any questions or comments about the Sky Candy Astronomy School website, the course, or any aspect of the Sky Candy 4K video series, we would be happy to hear from you! Click here to start the conversation ...
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