My husband has been working on a special Christmas gift for his dad this year, a painting based of an actual photograph from the Hubble space telescope. He painted layer by layer, color by color until he created the swirling, smoky light effect. And the final layer, the stars. He used a layer of clear glass beads, which he then hand-painted each one. When the light is just right, they really do glow like stars.
I think it's a beautiful painting, and more importantly, his dad knows it was created with great care and love.