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Quail Lane Studios

Where You Can Find These Scenes  

            Most of our work is from Arizona, and we visit some places in every season to be sure of lighting, weather and blooming.  Here's what you need to consider:
  1.  Animals are always rare.  There are some places that are more likely, but going there will often result in no shows by the creatures.  Other times, they are where they shouldn't be. Some days we barely see a dove or a quail.  On others, the coyotes are hunting the cottontails, leaving us with the hawks to watch the whole thing.  They have their own ideas.  Prepare, and hope.

        2.  Most plants, including the trees and most low-growing cactus, bloom in the mid-spring.  (Yes, every cactus blooms--some bloom at night--and they are always amazing.)  But saguaros bloom a little later and barrels bloom in August
Agaves, aloes, ocotillos, and yucca are anyone's guess.  Think altitude, climate zone, and latitude.
        3.  Most desert plants do not lose all their leaves in the winter.  Nevertheless they are most lush in late spring and during the summer monsoon.

        4.  Sunsets are most beautiful when the clouds are just right; often this is during monsoon.  Smoke from California forest fires sometimes provides wonderful changes of light in the summer and fall. 

        5.  Heavy weather pictures in the Sonoran Desert are rare.  Catching monsoon floods or snow requires quick thinking and sometimes long drives; check it out as soon as you wake up in the morning.  Shots of monsoon lightning are beautiful, but we don't have the nerve.  If you insist on getting them, keep a ground wire between your teeth at all times.

        6.  And finally:  use a real camera.  If you haven't already purchased the Canon reflex and a 900 mm. lens to go with it, don't.  We use a light mirrorless Olympus with interchangeable lenses for most work, but you can get good results with fairly simple cameras.   The camera in your phone is difficult to line up, may not give you the resolution you want, and is tricky to focus sharply.  Whatever you do, shoot in .tif, not .jpg.  The latter is a "lossy" format that trades greater camera memory for loss of image detail.

Now, you are ready.  Go for it:

Southern Arizona:

                Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum

                Catalina Mountains

                Chiricahua National Monument

                Madera Canyon

                Organ Pipe National Monument

                Reid Park Zoo

                Sabino Canyon

                Saguaro National Park


                Tohono Chul

                Tucson Botanical Garden             

Mid- and Northern Arizona:

                Apache Trail and Tonto National Monument

                Boyce Arboretum

                Canyon De Chelly National Monument

                Colorado River Basin (the whole thing!)

                Desert Botanical Garden

                Monument Valley

                Petrified Forest National Park

                Sedona-Jerome-Oak Creek Canyon

                Vermillion Cliffs

                Wupatki National Monument


And of course, just look around.

Ready?  OK, now we'd be happy to print those pictures for you on paper or canvas in any size that works for you.  Tap here.



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