Andy Marquez photo book finally reaches store shelves

Frustrating saga resolved two years after initial publication target

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The latest collection of beautiful Colorado photographs by Littleton artist Andy Marquez, “The Magic and Wonder of Colorado,” has had a long and difficult journey from conception, through the photographer's practiced eyes and trusty camera, to printing, to the booksellers' shelves. But it has arrived intact and is available from Outnumbered Gallery in Littleton, all Tattered Cover stores, the School of Mines bookstore in Golden, Boulder Bookstore and the Buffalo Bill Museum on Lookout Mountain.

And also at assorted to-be-announced appearances by the author, Marquez, who recalls sometimes returning to a site, such as Garden of the Gods, five times at moonrise, in order to have the light “just right.”

From 1992 to 2015, Marquez, with his wife Teresa, ran his own gallery featuring his prints and books, and traveled the world, often twice a year, to find the best shots, the best light and color — and at times, remarkable close-up encounters with wildlife.

Once a journalism major, Marquez also enjoys writing and composed four-line pieces for each page, plus a note about location. The first sunrise in the new book was shot in 2012 at Chatfield State Park, near Marquez's Roxborough home.

After 30 years-and two near-death experiences, Marquez connected with a large Boulder publisher for production of his latest collection of Colorado images. That publisher had acquired several local smaller companies and was known for its quality work on nature-oriented books.

Marquez originally contacted the publisher about reprinting an earlier (2006) title and got a “we'll get back to you” response, he said. They really weren't interested in a reprint.

Next, he assembled negatives, a name and some copy for the new book and had a contract for a 60-70 page book covering 2006-2015. Images were both new and from unpublished archives. Writing occupied the summer of 2015 and that year's Thanksgiving was a prospective publication date after the manuscript and negatives were submitted. Then it was postponed to the following May or June. (They were trying to get money together, he was told.) By June, communication became difficult, then impossible.

The publisher filed for bankruptcy in the fall, leaving a number of authors in trouble. Nine months later, Marquez received a call from an attorney for the new owner, local publisher Derek Lawrence, of Bower Books, who offered to return his material. Lawrence and another acquaintance also helped him find an overseas publisher and a friend/customer helped finance the printing in return for a share of sales.

The newly printed volumes arrived around Labor Day and as a self-published author, Marquez began the marketing/distribution part of the big project. The handsome book is priced at $39.95 and will be a welcome gift for outdoor lovers.

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