The land of purgatory is one of intense suffering. A hellish landscape created to cleanse the sins of man, this stop between heaven and hell is where souls are prepared for heaven. Through excruciating circumstances, souls atone for their transgressions. This process is intended to purify the souls and only by enduring this immense suffering can purification be achieved and the souls allowed into heaven. Therein lies the romantic truth to purgatory, beyond this land of hell is eternal peace and only those who persevere are rewarded with it.
Sand dunes are a hellish landscape of their own. These collections of particles, beholden to the forces of nature, are ever-shifting masses of chaos. The sharp grains cut and burn as they attempt to bury intruders. The dunes punish those who choose to scale their collapsing peaks then erase all trace of their existence, leaving a blank canvas of marvel for the next trespasser to conquer. This landscape is rugged, arid, and vast but beyond the scorching hills is an exquisite beauty. The chaotic swirling clouds of sand lead to clean, smooth lines and organized patterns. The hills baking in the sun contrast beautifully against the cooling slopes in shadow. This landscape with the ability to swallow the lost wanderer has an allure around each dune that entrances the artist with wonder.
Walking through the sand dunes is like walking through the brushstrokes of a painting. Every step produces a new alignment of lines and colors. During the afternoon, when the sun hangs high, the landscape flattens and gentle gradients give the coarse grains a softness. As the day passes, textures emerge and the landscape begins to show off its character. When the sun nears the horizon, the sand begins to glow and a world of contrast and hard lines allow for elegant compositions. Even after the sun has set, the waning light cools the baked sand and a new palette falls upon the hills.
This arid landscape is one I will never tire of as the dunes inspire the height of my photographic creativity. For this reason, I have made "Sands" an open study.
10% of every photo sold from the Sands Study will be donated to the Muscular Dystrophy Association. The MDA logo is a link to my personal donation page where you can read about why I chose to partner with the MDA as well as donate directly to the cause.