Local artist's work that went into space now up for auction

Jon Louis Gonzalez always had a love for outer space. 

The space coast local grew up watching rocket launches.

Now, he’s 27 with an art studio of his own in Miami, carving out a "space art" niche for himself. 

One of his paintings made the trip to the last frontier.

"I was really in love with the pictures of my art floating in space, in circles, and then you see the Earth in the background… There is not a bigger joy," Gonzalez said.

His work, called Embrace II, shows two astronauts embracing. It flew into orbit aboard Inspiration4, SpaceX's historic all-civilian mission in September.

"I had an exhibition and Sian Proctor came out of nowhere with this strong joy. She said, ‘Oh my God, you are an artist! This is what you do?’"

He added, "When she was chosen to go to space, the first thing she did was reach out to me and ask me if she could bring one of two paintings to space with her," Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez's painting is under a bidding war on Charitybuzz.com. It's now going for over $3,000.

But, Gonzalez says it was never about the money. It was about celebrating his two biggest passions, inspiring the next generation of young artists.

"Subconsciously, we were advancing as humans together, as a unit. During that moment, I fell in love with the feeling that it gave me to see joy in other people, and I kept thinking, ‘What can I do in my life that could bring that same immense joy, amazement and impactfulness to other people,’" Gonzalez said. 

The online auction ends on Nov. 10, and the proceeds will go toward St. Jude Children's hospital.