Monday, August 20, 2012

"The 24 Hours Before": a book review

by Kate Dardine

Working at Fine Print Imaging for the past 23 years has been a privilege and a constant source of inspiration. I’ve had the opportunity to see thousands of beautiful images and meet hundreds of talented photographers and artists. Some of them have become my friends.

Of all the friends I have made over the years, a few stand out because of their indomitable spirit.  One of these special people is photographer Andy Marquez. Andy first came into Fine Print in 1990, carrying binders that contained hundreds of negatives. He was looking for a new printer. Having moved to Colorado recently from the east coast, I thought I detected the remnants of a NY accent in his voice. Sure enough, he had grown up in the Queens, close to where my husband grew up. That conversation started a friendship and business partnership that has spanned over 20 years.

I’ve had the opportunity to see many exotic places through Andy’s eyes – Peru, Prague, Hawaii, Israel, Chile, India, Cambodia, Australia…the list goes on and on. Many of his images have a spiritual feel – Andy has a gift for getting at the essence of a place. When he recently brought in his latest book (he has published six including this one), I was immediately drawn to the title: “The 24 Hours Before.”

This latest endeavor showcases 24 images from all over the world, and recounts the 24 hours that preceded taking the shot. Some recollections are from Andy’s journal, some are from his memory. They provide an insight into the person who is Andy Marquez. 

As much as I enjoyed the images and reading about “The 24 Hours Before”, it was the last chapter, simply called “About the Author and Photographer” that touched me. Because in this chapter, Andy takes us into his inner circle and shares his triumphs, failures, challenges and champions. Although life has thrown him enough curves to make many people throw in the towel, Andy has emerged, faith strengthened, looking forward to the future.

I recommend “The 24 Hours Before” to travelers (armchair or otherwise), photographers, artists and anyone who wants to be inspired by one photographer’s journey. Andy’s book may be purchased here.

Kate Dardine is a professional artist and Marketing Director for Fine Print Imaging.