The largest gypsum sand dunes in the world can be found in southern New Mexico. It is also one of the most beautiful places in the world to view the full moon, colorful sunsets and desert storms dancing across the land. White Sands National Monument is one of the most photogenic desert landscapes and dunes I have seen which is why I love to photograph landscape compositions, night sky scenes and portraits here. This vastness of soft white dunes is the location of my featured shoot for May.
Upon setting foot in this landscape, your perception of your surroundings can throw you off a bit. Visually your common sense is preparing for you to feel the coolness of this soft white substance on the ground. It looks like and has the texture of snow. Be prepared to trick your mind! The mounds really are sand! The creamy, smooth and perfectly formed mounds of this white substance is intoxicating. Taking my shoes off is always a must when I am here. To walk barefoot in this gypsum greatness is one of my favorite things.
Footprints in the sand are a common site. Mostly from tiny critters that live in these dunes. The dunes seem to always have a fresh clean look every morning from the breeze and wind that occurred in the night. As the day and sunset goes on, one can notice the evidence of this unique area's residents. Tiny mammals, toads and lizards are some of the animals that make this area their home. The gypsum is more pliable and softer than sand I have felt on the beach at the ocean and footprints seem to linger with the perfect shape of the tiny feet that run across the land.
I love photographing people against that brilliant blue sky and the stark white background. On an overcast day, the skies can become very dramatic and beautiful. Sitting out on these dunes to watch the storms in the distance is a site to see. A cloud could come out of no where and a rich stream of water casts a shower over a dune or two, then disappear.
This area of snowlike dunes might lack any snowmen but one thing that you see a lot of are people sledding down these multi sized hills of smooth sand. Over 275 square miles of these white sands dunes offers a giant playground for all ages. Sledding is a common pass time here at White Sands. When photographing people here, no matter their age, this is a must!! Unleash the fun and let the amazing creative images begin!
The winds are very slowly moving this entire sandy desert area northeast. The ripples left in this sand give that untouched look and perfect effect for photographing scenes on their own or with people. Everyone I have worked with here loves being out in the elements and most come back to continue exploring this place on their own.