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Photographer Mel Stone was born in farmhouse outside Solway, Minnesota. He came to Las Cruces in 2010 and opened Mesquite Art Gallery in a remodeled 1898 adobe on Mesquite Street in the Mesquite Historic District.
Stone has a BA in chemistry from St. Olaf College, an MA in economics and mathematics from the University of North Dakota and a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Colorado Bolder.
“I taught at the university level for a few years, then got bit by the TV news bug,” Stone said.
For about 30 years, he was “a one-man band TV news guy (photographer, reporter, writer and editor), which was pretty serious work,” Stone said. “My first, serious still photography was chasing butterflies around northern prairies.”
Stone bought his first digital camera and high-quality inkjet printer in 2005 and now carries a Fujifilm X-2 in a holster with a 50-200 mm lens and an X-t3 with 18-55 mm lens on a strap around his neck.
Now 77, Stone sells his work at the Las Cruces Farmers and Crafts Market and his gallery at 340 N. Mesquite St., which also features the works of other artists.
Six of his photographs are featured in the book “Seeing In Sixes, 2019, published by Lenswork.
Stone re-opened his gallery on Saturday, May 16. Current hours are 11 a.m.-5 p.m. on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Saturday hours likely will change, he said, when the downtown Las Cruces Farmers and Crafts Market re-opens. Text Stone at 575-640-3502 to make sure the gallery is open before you visit.
For more information, visit www.melstonephotography.com and www.mesquiteartgallery.com.