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Joshua Tree National Park Workshop

  • Joshua Tree National Park (map)
Photo by Stephen Johnson

Photo by Stephen Johnson

November 7-10, 2019


November 7, 2019
12:00 pm - 6:00 pm

November 8, 2019
5:30 am - 6:00 pm

November 9, 2019
5:30 am - 6:00 pm

November 10, 2019
5:30 am - 12:00 pm


The Place

Joshua Tree is high desert, exotic flora, desert vistas and wonderful boulder-strewn fields and hills. This workshop is about desert color, organic form and exploration. It is about quiet, and wind, sun, dawn and twilight, star-filled nights and solid photographic information. 

The Joshua Tree Photography Workshop

This workshop will spend four days in this autumn quiet, moving through this desert unhurried, looking around at simple form as much as at dramatic granite boulders and Joshua Trees themselves. The light and color being as much our subject as the land itself. We will work hard during the day, then review our work through digital projection and on laptops at night.

We will spend our first half day preparing for our outings. Topics covered will be optimal digital camera use in a variety of formats, file size and printing considerations. We will open files, review success, and constantly go back in the field putting into practice lessons learned. 

Digital exposure and dynamic range, color management, printers, papers and pigments, b&w and color, composition, and amazement-all will be part of our ambitious excursion into the evolving world of digital photography.

We'll spend four activity packed days in this desert, sometimes rising before dawn, lingering for the last moment of twilight and after for some starry night photographs.. The trip is designed to be a complete immersion in landscape photography and its digital evolution. We will discuss technical and aesthetic issues, tapping into your emotional response to this landscape, working toward images that are uniquely your own.

Individual problem solving is a high priority in my workshop program. Classes are kept small to maximize individual attention. Plan to bring some of your work to give me an idea of how you see, what you are happy with, and photographs that indicate problems you are encountering.


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November 7-10, 2019. We will meet for orientation at 12 pm the afternoon of Thursday, November 7 at a hotel TBA. Our first full workshop day is Friday, November 8, and we will conclude around midday Sunday, November 10. (Please note exact meeting times may vary.)


$975 tuition; $100 deposit (The balance is due six weeks prior to the start date. Please call 323-464-0909 to pay the balance.)


A $100 deposit is required to reserve space in the workshop. The balance is due six weeks prior to the start date. Refund requests arriving six weeks or greater before the start date will result in loss of deposit. Refund requests arriving four to six weeks prior to the start date will result in a 50% loss of the workshop fee. No refunds will be provided for requests arriving less than four weeks prior to the start date. All refund requests must be submitted in writing via email to


All instruction and location guiding. We will send you a trip checklist to assist with preparations. The workshop is provided under a Commercial Use Authorization from Joshua Tree National Park.


Nation Park entrance fee ($15-$55 per person depending on mode), airfare, lodging, car rentals, camping gear (if camping), camera gear, and meals are not included, nor are any items of a personal nature. Participants will be required to transport themselves to and from our meeting location at the hotel, TBD.


Limited to 10 participants


This workshop is designed to accommodate all camera formats and all skill levels. Our goal is to introduce you to the beauty and diversity of Joshua Tree and to help you advance your photography through creative personal expression.


Participants must provide their own transportation and camera equipment. A suggested gear list and other workshops details are provided upon registration. Participants should be in good physical condition and should be able to comfortably walk 4+ miles each day on uneven terrain (short but steep sand hills, rocky washes, and occasional natural rock steps which may require the use of hands for balance). An SUV or other rugged high-clearance vehicle is recommended (we will be driving dirt and gravel roads) and carpooling to our locations within the Park is required and will be orchestrated daily by Michael.




Our lodging is TBA. Rooms have been blocked for this workshop, but you are responsible for registration and payment. You will be provided full lodging details upon workshop registration. Camping is also available for those who prefer this option:


Anticipate a 3 hour travel time from the greater Los Angeles area.


You are responsible for all your own meals/snacks during the trip. A recommended food and gear list will be provided to all workshop participants.


Please contact Stephen Johnson by email:

Earlier Event: October 12
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Later Event: January 18
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