The otherworldly dunes of White Sands, New Mexico is a place where people sand surf on discs, ride horses, and get married, but they've also claimed lives of people who've been disoriented by the blinding white sand and consequently died from heat exposure and lack of water. All while being located directly beside a US military missile testing range.
Standing atop the white gypsum dunes felt like being adrift on a sea of an alien planet. The look of the white sand changes so much with the varying light and shadow at different times during the day. Much like the waves on a sea, the dunes have a sort of impermanence as they're constantly swept and sculpted by the desert winds.
Photographer Navid Baraty left a career in engineering to pursue his passion in photography and art. His deep curiosity and love of travel has fueled his determination to visit every continent of the Earth, which has led to his particular fondness for capturing dramatic landscapes and cities from above. Navid explores the world always looking for unique perspectives with an eye for the hidden and the unseen.
Navid is a contributor to the National Geographic Image Collection, and is available for assignments worldwide.