Artist makes a living playing in the sand

SAN FRANCISCO -- The designs raked into beach sand are sometimes spontaneous and free flowing, sometimes geometric and precise. But their beauty is always fleeting, waiting to be washed away.

Andres Amador creates artwork as large as a football field. CBS News

They are the work of 42-year-old Andres Amador. Amador calls himself an "earthscape artist." His designs often cover a space as large as a football field, created on beaches from California to the Caribbean.

While speaking to CBS News about his inspiration, Amador said, "I would say my biggest inspiration is nature and the patterns I see in front of me ... I'm trying to translate the world that I see and try and understand it."

Amador was educated as an environmental scientist and worked in computer programming before giving it up for his artistic passion ten years ago.

"I never would have thought I could be making a living raking in the sand," he said.

He uses a camera mounted on a quad-copter to take high sky images. He sells them online - a set of postcards for $25, larger prints for more than $300.

"I don't think I am doing some monumental thing for humanity. But I think that in a small way, I am contributing to the happiness of people who experience it and it does something for them."

When the tide takes away the artwork, he has a blank slate to do it again.

  • John Blackstone
    John Blackstone

    From his base in San Francisco, CBS News correspondent John Blackstone covers breaking stories throughout the West. That often means he is on the scene of wildfires, earthquakes, floods, hurricanes and rumbling volcanoes. He also reports on the high-tech industry in Silicon Valley and on social and economic trends that frequently begin in the West.