Experience for yourself the amazing floral show that the lush Sonoran Desert produces every spring when carpets of California Poppies, brittlebush, lupine and owls clover cover the desert hillsides intertwined with the cactus. Announcing the “Arizona Desert in Spring Photographic Workshop” in March 19th through the 23rd, 2014. Join Dreamscape photographers Kurt Budliger and George Stocking for 5 days of inspiration, education and creativity in the desert Southwest. Located in Apache Junction there is easy access to the iconic Superstition Mountains and Lost Dutchman State Park as well as The Apache Trail, a winding road that runs through the heart of the central deserts and home to Canyon, Apache and Roosevelt Lake. Kurt and myself both love teaching, so classroom will be packed with tutorials and tips on Lightroom and Photoshop as well as composition.
This is my home turf, and I have been crawling over every nook and cranny for going on 20 years. Additional destinations will include Bartlett lake, Four Peaks, as well as any flower hot spots that are active at the time. All the following images were taken at listed destinations.
“All the Dutchmans Gold” was taken in Lost Dutchman State Park and shows how prolific the display can be. I chose a wide angle (equivalent to a 28mm). The tilt shift feature of the view camera allowed me to get close and still keep the foreground flowers in focus. The weather was hazy bright with high cloudswhich allowed me to shoot the poppies while open and not in direct sunlight. (California Poppies will close if not in sunlight.)
“Spotlight on Spring” was taken on the shores of Canyon Lake along the Apache Trail. When I saw the giant brittlebrush blooming next to the inlet in the lake, I knew it was on. I liked the way the line of the brittlebush mimicked the lakes inlet with the sky about ready to explode. The sky never exploded, but as we all know, sometimes you get what you need.
“Bartlett Lake Wildflowers” are indicative of the amazing display that hap[pens at Bartlett Lake. Since the sun was well past golden hour, I waited for about 15 minutes for the sun to touch my foreground lupine, all the while shading my lens for the flare. I seldom carry the sunshades that come for my wide angle lenses, preferring to leave them on some shelf in the closet, mostly because of the shape of them and the space it takes in my bag.. I typically shade my lens with my hand or hat; I always use my cable release so I can look at the lens while I shade it.
“Brittlebush Explosion” is an example of a closer shot. I was captivated by the sky and was searching for a composition. Seeing as how I had no mid-ground, I took a low angle so the foreground brittlebush would fill the spaces under the other bushes evenly.
“Escape From Superstition Mountain” is another image from the fabulous Lost Dutchman State Park. While it was far from golden hour, I could not ignore the amazing cloud.