Category Archives: Column

Safety first

On September 10, an 18-year-old Israeli tourist fell to his death while taking a selfie at Yosemite National Park. He was at the top of Nevada Falls when he tried to take a picture of himself, lost his balance and plunged 820-ft to the bottom. A 2015 report found that selfies now lead to more [...]

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Practice makes perfect

One of the main goals of the monthly Readers Photo Challenge is to have you go out and actually take some pictures. Occasionally, someone will come up to me an say that they like the tips that are given in this column but they can’t take good pictures. To that I say “practice, practice, practice.” [...]

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Readers Photo Challenge assignment: Glass

Glass is the subject of the next Readers Photo Challenge assignment. Glass objects are notoriously difficult to photograph. Take time in looking at the subject carefully before taking a picture of it. Unwanted reflections, including your own, can be a problem. Take steps to remove those reflections. If it’s a light, turn it off. Sometimes [...]

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Raders Photo Challenge assignment: Play time

The new Readers Photo Challenge assignment is “Play.” The old San Joaquin County Fair photography contest used to have a category called “people at work or play.” Since this is summertime and many people are on vacation we’re going to take up the latter half of that and do photographs of people playing. Getting photos [...]

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Readers Photo Challenge: Bridges

The latest Readers Photo Challenge is “bridges.” A bridge can be photographed as an architectural structure like any other building. Some are famous and iconic and be approached like photographing a monument or a statue. Like beauty found in nature, man made structures can have an aesthetic quality in their own way. Twenty-three readers sent [...]

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Hold still, please

Using a good, sturdy tripod is the best way to ensure that your pictures are shake-free. However, not everyone likes to carry one around all the time. Depending on the model, they tend to be bulky, heavy and awkward to use. I’m one of those people. If I have a subject that I definitely know [...]

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Travel Practice

May is coming to an end soon graduations will take place and then after that summer vacation and all the photos you’ll take while you’re on the road. Vacation photos are essentially the same as travel photography. Like all things, the more you practice at travel pictures the better you’ll get at it. But short [...]

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Far and wide

When you purchased a DSLR camera, it usually comes with what’s know as a “kit” lens because it comes bundled as a part of a kit that probably includes things like a memory card, some filters, a spare battery and a camera bag. It tends to be a zoom lens that goes from a wide-angle [...]

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Readers Photo Challenge assignment: The call of nature

Spring is in full swing with warm weather and flowers blossoming which is the inspiration of the newest Readers Photo Challenge assignment: Nature. It’s a broad subject encompassing landscapes, wildlife and more, so you can approach it several different ways.   Landscapes and seascapes tend to be shot with wide angle lenses, which is fine. [...]

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Readers Photo Challenge: Rule of thirds

The rule of thirds, the subject of the latest challenge assignment, is a compositional tool that many learn when starting out in photography. It states that if you divide up the frame into equal thirds with imaginary lines vertically and horizontally, your main subject should be placed at one or more of the intersection of [...]

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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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