White Sands NM, New Mexico, USA by Rebecca Herranen

Picture Story

During the pandemic of 2020 we made a move from Southern California to Florida in August. On the way I wanted to stop at one of my favorite places, White Sands, New Mexico to photograph the dunes, possibly for the last time. Having gone out of our way to spend just one evening there I was beyond disappointed to see the air heavy with smoke blown in from the worst fire season in California and western United Staten recorded history.

Saddened I decided to perch myself anyways high on top of a beautiful white sand dune facing straight into the sun. Sitting in the sand, the air was hot and dry, I waited. Shooting into the smoky haze. Strangely it was somehow beautiful in an unearthly way. I sat there for about an hour, not really knowing what I had. Disappointed, I didn't even look close until we finished our trip across the United States 2 weeks later.

To my surprise, even though the images weren't what I had hoped for they were beautiful. Purple, blue, and orange tones softly muted by the smoke. Amazing how something so beautiful could come of something so tragic. But then that is how I like to see everything. There is beauty everywhere.

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