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Trees Rocks Desert series by photographer Leandro Sanchez Some of his most inspirational moments as a photographer for Leandro Sanchez occur while he treks solo deep into the vast Western USA desert landscape, which have resulted in his photographic series such as "Rocks" (Rocas) and "Deserts".

Technically these shoots are complicated: searing sun, flash-storms, sandy gusts, rattlesnakes, or traversing massive rocks carrying photographic equipment can be difficult obstacles - yet nature always offers a visual reward. There has never been a time for Leandro when venturing deep into nature that he has come back empty-handed...

Nature, as he says, has a magic to it - various windows of opportunity that if you are in sync with the elements and focused enough, it is possible to capture those rare images of stark, majestic beauty.

For Leandro, hours of driving, walking, and climbing through rugged desert terrain are dedicated to simply scouting for that ideal location: a particularly perfect rock, or a unique vantage point where a photograph can masterfully tell multiple tales.

For many of the visuals he captures, Leandro ventures intentionaly deep into nature - places where most likely no one has for decades or more (possibly never) set foot on "that hill, that rock"... places that obey his 1/2 rule: half a tank of gas just to go one way in on a lonely dirt road, and the other half tank left for the way out, with a car loaded in gallons and gallons of water for the trip (plus extra lest he goes beyond that 1/2 tank rule and has to hike his way out on foot in solitude).

The heat easily reaches into the 100's daily and drops 50 degrees by night - in these places a flat tire means a certain 2 or 3 day walk back to the nearest road where he might find another passing car. The risk is large in the vast desert: Leandro could not realistically change a tire on a 30-degree hill, especially when totally alone...

But where there is risk, there is gain. Nature is a rigorous teacher of discipline - the one who does not go by that discipline will suffer, and the one who respects it stands to gain much. Alone in the desert armed with nothing but a camera and a simple drug-store rattlesnake bit remedy kit (which may or may not work once put to a true life-or-death test), times can be scary yet also extremely rewarding - some of the visuals that Leandro has captured in these series are the result of these long trips of solitude - a total disconnect from the comforts and constraints of modern life.

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