Category Archives: Column

Flash in the hand

One of the last disciplines that photographers learn to master is how to use a flash properly. Many don’t like how the effects of a flash looks in their photos and quickly give it up for natural lighting. Much of it has to do with how a flash is mounted on the camera. Accessory flashes, [...]

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“Take chances, make mistakes, get messy.” – Miss Frizzle from the Magic School Bus. So you’ve become proficient at a certain technique and you can make consistently good pictures using it, what do you do next? Experiment. We can all become inured to doing the same thing in the same way (even if that method [...]

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Readers Photo Challenge assignment: Out of the ordinary

“Miracles happen everyday, change your perception of what a miracle is and you’ll see them all around you.” – Jon Bon Jovi May is National Photo Month and in observance of it this month’s Readers Photo Challenge assignment is “ordinary objects.” The ability to see the beauty in the mundane is the basis in many [...]

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Practice, practice, practice

“Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst” – Henri Cartier-Bresson I often hear people say: “I take terrible pictures.” When they say that an old joke comes to mind. A tourist happens upon famed violinist Jascha Heifetz on the streets of New York City. The tourist asks him how to get to Carnegie Hall to [...]

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Seeing in black and white

The current Readers Photo Challenge assignment issued last week is black and white. Many of today’s digital cameras have a setting to make them shoot in a colorless mode, German camera manufacturer even has a digital model that shoots black and white exclusively. There are free apps that you can get for your cellphone for [...]

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As clear as black and white

  While the previous Readers Photo Challenge was all about color, the new assignment is about the lack of it. In the beginning of photography technology limited things to one choice: black and white. Great art was born out of this single choice. Photographic legends such as Ansel Adams, Edward Weston and Henri Cartier Bresson took the medium to [...]

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Coming through with flying colors

Color is the subject of the latest Readers Photo Challenge assignment but not just your garden-variety everyday color. Readers were tasked to use color as a part of the composition or as the main subject of the photographs entered. From bright color comprising most of the photo to just accents, color is an essential part [...]

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Memories saved

On Feb. 19, 1986, a levee in the Delta broke letting the waters of the Mokelumne River inundate Tyler Island. The tiny town of Walnut Grove where my parents lived was threatened as the flood waters crept up from the southern portion of the island to the more populated north. The residents were ordered to [...]

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Readers Photo Challenge: True colors

This month’s Readers Photo Challenge assignment is “color.” We all see in color so taking pictures in color would seem no big deal. But we’re not talking about your garden variety color image. There are times when it doesn’t matter whether a photo is in black or white or in color but sometimes a picture [...]

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It’s not the camera, it’s the photographer

The World Press Photo contest recently announced the winning pictures from 2014. These are considered some of the best images in the world. By and large they were all taken with digital single lens reflex (DSLR) cameras, which are the tools of choice for the photojournalist. The Spanish photo website Quesabesde analyzed the EXIF data [...]

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    Clifford Oto

    Clifford Oto, an award-winning photographer, has been with The Record since 1984. Through the changes from black and white to digital photography, he’s kept his focus on covering the events, people and life of San Joaquin county. This blog deals ... Read Full
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