‘Photographing the Western Desert’ represents a year of work in the wilderness for Emmy award-winning photographer Mark Andrews. His home, centered in the vast Mojave Desert of the southwestern United States, gives him a deep connection to the elements that can seem at once, both unforgivingly harsh in nature, yet richly generous in color and form. These 160 pages contain over 200 color and black and white photographs. Mark’s images reflect what he not only sees, but also what he experiences as a way of life.
With a thousand mile diameter range as his traveling circle, Mark has recorded here a year in the desert ranges. This is a study in life zones from below sea level at Death Valley, to the upper ranges of Zion National Park, capped at 11,000 feet by Bristlecone pines – the oldest living organisms on earth. Vibrant sandstone cliffs, barren playas, verdant pine and aspen forests, lakes, streams, wildflowers and mining camps are a part of the Western Desert. All are pictured here.
To really feel part of the image, he likes to spend time on location in advance of his planned field sessions. "This is not a controlled commercial experience," he says. "Every moment, the light changes - day or night. The image comes when nature decides to make a gift of it - like a revelation." And the rest of the photographic expression is revealed upon study and experimentation back in the studio. "The camera is needed to capture the light - the artist is needed to release the emotion." He carries within himself an abiding love for arid mountains topped by bristlecone pines, sand dunes blown into curves and heaps, wild flowers and sweeping sandstone views framed by blue skies and towering storm clouds. You’ll notice that . . . while viewing what he saw . . . in this book.