Visualizing Andira

Both figuratively and literally, the world of Andira is a very real place. Indeed, Andira owes much of its inspiration to places I have been. Below is a collection of photography, meant to evoke, at least in part, the beauty and magic of Andira.

A new consciousness arose. Now Andira has a will of its own.
It does not trust you, my children.


Winter Solstice

Brother Sun rose above the jagged, wooden edge of the village palisade, sending his bleached rays of light across the frozen fields … On the morning of the Winter Solstice, his light was pale and weak. The air was frigid. The hard soil was lifeless.


Dusk gathered. Darkness expanded between the trunks of the trees … snow draped the forest in a deathly silence. Seeing a cacophony of tracks on the ground, Seraphus knelt, placed a hand on the chaotic impressions in the snow … and understood.
Six wolves.
Three girls.


The owl soared over the clearing and out of sight, leaving him alone with the ravenous wolves.
The sky turned black.
The night roared.
In his mind he heard a deep, gravelly voice say, I am coming for you.
Darkness took him.


He started a new carving for Serena’s flute – of a Terrapin, as thanks for saving his leg.



“Aren’t you a Guardian?” Seraphus protested. “Aren’t you supposed to help my people?”
“A Guardian? Of my stream, perhaps,” Témoth replied.


Brother Sun

The first golden rays of Brother Sun were shining and streaming through breaks in the clouds … The night creatures had fallen silent, and now birds were taking wing and singing to the dawn. Squirrels chattered. Chipmunks squeaked and chased themselves through the underbrush. Two redbirds twittered and tumbled from one tree to the next, adding their voices to the growing chorus. It was a symphony in Seraphus’ ears, and the panorama before him filled him with a humble awe.


Sister Moon

That is why we dance and celebrate Sister Moon this, the Winter Solstice, when, like the night, the darkness holds its greatest sway over Andira. She and her Many Eyes help us stay in control and keep us in the light.


The Barrier

In his mind he saw himself as a hawk, soaring far above the world of Andira … He looked down and saw the Barrier that separated the Seven Villages, aligned in the image of the Celestial Hunter, from the vast wastelands of Andira beyond.


My dear children, spread no more darkness across our world. Stay behind the Barrier Mountains surrounding our villages. Beyond them dwell the deadly relics of your parents’ forbidden magic. The Seven Villages … will keep you safe.


The Mountain of Mohan

Before him stretching upward, was the imposing mountain of Mohan.
The first golden rays of Brother Sun were shining and streaming through breaks in the clouds, illuminating the higher, jagged peaks. High above, and out of sight, an eagle cried.



Scanning a nearby tree, Seraphus found [the jaguar] resting comfortably.

The Great Conjunction

Eliana breathed in the perfumed air, exhaled, and said, “I don’t think I can describe it. I sense emotions from everywhere. The rocks and trees, the squirrels and butterflies, they all seem so content. At peace. In balance.”


The Edge of the World

On the other side of The Barrier, he saw the high, sheer ridge that was called the Edge of the World. It fell away to a vast plain that seemed nearly as desolate and gray as the one he had created on Mohan.


The Lonely Tree

Seraphus saw a lone tree leaning over the edge. He walked over to it and sat down, letting his legs dangle above the smoking plain far below.


They clasped hands and watched the plain burning. Smoke choked the sun.


The Forbidden Road

The Forbidden Road began as a dark, angled passage through sheer cliffs of The Barrier.


  • Joel Grayson

    Sam! You have always brought Andira to life. In your words and telling of it. The way you can actually see it in your vision as you beckon the stories to those who will listen of her tales. It was always…always very real. That glint in your eye and half-smirk of your grin that somehow knows a secret that nobody else is in on. It is as if you are reciting a memory…a luxuriously sympathetic and deeply meaningful memory to your audience…to your friends…to your fellow countrymen and villagers. These photographs, alone a marvel, have simply added to the concrete tangibility of the world that you make us all want to spend our most upcoming informative years within. Informative of this new world. And with that said, the second shot you have in the Winter Solace section above, oh, how I can see the wolves there- hiding, hunting, making their own; I am proud to know of this secret place that has only been blessed upon the ears of those who wish to go. I am very humbled to see where it takes me; where you take me…as only you can see it. This land lives not in ink, but in dreams. Do not destroy Pan, not at any cost; Thrive in the majesty that has made Creator out of you. To my Brother Sam and the Father Sun that you shine on us, I thank you. Good journey!

    • Samuel Walters

      Joel, my friend … my brother!

      Andira has always been part dream, part reality. It is a convergence – dare I say “conjunction” – of worlds. It has been a place, much like the world of Fantastica from The Neverending Story, that has existed so long as I continued to imagine it was real.

      But here’s the thing, the beautiful thing: With the story and the world now in your hands – and, hopefully, someday soon in the hands of everyone else who wants to take part in the secret – the world will forever exist. Not just in my imagination – but yours … and whoever else is willing to set foot within it.

      But if we are, truly, the music makers and the dreamers of dreams … then I promise you, I will keep dreaming. And song of Andira will continue evolving. ;-)

      • Joel Grayson

        Let freedom sing!

        • Samuel Walters



          Am I supposed to be dignified?