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Anza-Borrego Desert

I went to Anza-Borrego Desert State Park this past Thursday to get some shots of the Spring bloom. I'd never been to Anza-Borrego before, so I didn't really know what to expect, but overall, I really enjoyed the trip. The flowers were plentiful and the weather was nice. Lots of Brittle Bush, Desert Dandelion and Lupine. The Ocotillo cacti were also in bloom, which was great.

Even though what drew me out to this park in the first place was the flowers, that wasn't where I ended up getting my best pictures. Truthfully, I was only marginally pleased with my flower landscape attempts. Things just weren't vibing for me, I guess.†

I did, however, spend some time in The Slot where I got some great pictures. I spent around 2 hours in this narrow slot canyon and didn't see a single person while I was out there! The lighting was dramatic in many spots and the experience was so much fun. I'd never been in a slot canyon before and I was just blown away by it.

For this one ^ I threw some sand into the air to bring out the shaft of light.

It's a good thing I'm in shape because some of the canyon barely fit me with my backpack on.†

Tight quarters in The Slot.

Later on, I went out to Village Site to get some flower landscapes. Again, the results are just mediocre, but I still had fun. I tried my luck at some star trail shots, but didn't do too well (I've never really mastered that). I did get one nighttime shot I was pleased with.

Chino Hills State Park

I went on a little hike yesterday through Chino Hills State Park. It was my first time visiting and I have to say, it's a really great park. Despite the abundant power lines and air traffic overhead, you feel pretty detached from the surrounding cities. I love rolling green hills - classic California landscape - and Chino Hills SP has plenty of them!

I think it was a little bit early for peak bloom this Spring, but there were a lot of flowers out. I saw poppies from a distance, purple lupines and tons of these little white guys (see pictures) for which I don't know the name. Also saw lots of coyote and mountain lion tracks in the mud.

Could have used a few more clouds to spice up the skies and sunset a bit, but oh well. I'll be back before too long. I was out maybe a total of 4-5 hours and I am ridiculously sore today. I need to go hiking with a full backpack of camera gear more often!

Outdoor Photographer – March 2009

I am extremely happy to report that my article entitled "Shoot More, Process Less" has been published in the March 2009 issue of Outdoor Photographer along with eight of my photos!

AND MY PICTURE MADE THE COVER!

This is a really big deal for me because when I started getting serious about photography quite a few years back, one of my biggest goals was to have an article published in Outdoor Photographer and to make the cover. Now I can say I did it (and just shy of my 22nd birthday)! I'm so excited!

I've been subscribing to Outdoor Photographer for a long time now because I truly feel it is the highest quality photography magazine out there today.†It's very well laid out with great photography and top-notch articles.†I owe a lot of my knowledge to the articles found in this magazine.†

Needless to say, I had to take a ton of pictures of this accomplishment and post it here on my blog. I'm not trying to toot my own horn or anything, but I'm just so happy!

The cover.

Pages 1-2 of my article.

Pages 3-4.

Page 5.

Some vanity shots (I'm a dork):

The entire article is also online at the Outdoor Photographer website. You can read it here. My article is featured on the homepage of www.OutdoorPhotographer.com towards the middle. It was at the top for a little bit and, luckily, I got some screenshots of it.

I'd love to hear from anybody who has seen this issue and/or has read my article. I've heard from a few people across the country already and I'd love to get more feedback.†