I am not a professional photographer!  Nothing became clearer to me than this fact as I traveled to Temecula, California to photograph the sunrise ascent of the dozens of balloons highlighting the Temecula Valley Balloon and Wine Festival. 

I was feeling pretty good about my photographic progression…pretty good, that is, until I saw all the photographers with multiple cameras hanging around their necks, each with gigantic lenses seemingly longer than my arm!  The very sight of these professionals caused me to recognize where I was in this journey.  So, I remember…this is a journey…and, I’m at the beginning.

What was my response?  I learned from the professionals.  I followed them.  I paid attention to the shots they were taking.  When they moved – I moved.  They had no idea I was even there.  But, I was paying close attention.  And, I was learning.

I hope you enjoy my photographic journal from the 2010 Temecula Valley Balloon and Wine Festival.

A rare view from inside a balloon as it’s being inflated

copyright 2010

With the rising sun hiding behind, this balloon is nearing its point of ascent

copyright 2010

Ascending to full flight, these people are in for the ride of their life

copyright 2010

A shot from nearly directly under an ascending balloon – shooting nearly straight up created a much more colorful sky

copyright 2010

Up, up and away in my beautiful, my beautiful balloon

copyright 2010

This is one of my favorite shots because it illustrates the full depth of field

copyright 2010

Remember…only YOU can prevent forest fires

copyright 2010

Obviously, this one slipped in from Area 51

copyright 2010

A joint ascent

copyright 2010

A balloon just clearing the trees

copyright 2010

These balloons almost follow the tree line

copyright 2010

All photography is original and falls under the protection and copyright of this blog


~ by photographyfree4all on June 9, 2010.


  1. Makes me want to take a ride in a balloon! Such beauty! Thanks for sharing.


  2. These are beautiful, you are gooooood! love you, your little sis.


  3. I understand!!! I felt that way at a wedding I recently attended, but it’s better to be at the start of the journey than not on it at all. And I love these hot air balloon shots! Beautiful!


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