1. Late last year, photographer Tim Dodd found himself as the lone bidder for a Russian high-altitude space suit on an auction website.
3. Since winning, Dodd told BuzzFeed, he has been planning how to use them. And so was born the “Everyday Astronaut” series.
5. In the poignant series, Dodd, who said he’s had a love for space since he was a kid, is seen as he undergoes normal daily activities as a recently returned astronaut might. He mows the lawn on a Segway. He fills a cone with space ice cream.
7. Before winning the auction, the Cedar Falls, Iowa resident said he spent a lot of time dreaming about what he would do if he actually won (a not-so-difficult feat, considering he was the only bidder).
9. “When I won it, I was shocked and almost panicked,” he said. “I felt like I had a huge responsibility to do something ridiculous with it.”
11. This actually isn’t the first we’ve seen of the 29-year-old photographer: He’s also known for documenting the love story of his friend Taylor Morris, a soldier who lost both legs, an arm, and a hand in Afghanistan.
13. Dodd said his favorite picture in the series is him sadly riding a playground space shuttle, which he said “portrays a fairly genuine depression about NASA currently being without a manned space program.”
“It’s one of the more comical shots but also one of the most honest,” he said.
15. Life as a pretend astronaut isn’t all glamorous, though. When astronauts wear suits like this, Dodd said, they are attached to a unit that cools them. Without that luxury, the photographer’s suit gets incredibly hot.
17. Dodd experienced the full effect of the suit’s warmth while wearing it for a shoot at Florida’s SpaceX rocket at the Kennedy Space Center, after a few people asked him for photos.
Soon, kids began lining up to take photos with him. After half an hour, Dodd had to turn them down to peel off the burning suit.
19. “Literally, there were puddles of sweat at my feet,” he said. “It was miserable.”
21. For a time, the space suit was most of what Dodd thought and spoke about, he admitted, adding that the whole thing has become a running joke between him and his friends. “I’m really lucky my girlfriend hasn’t broken up with me!” he said.
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