Category Archives: Column


There are times when serendipity, chance happenings, produces some great photos. Who needs years of training and experience when luck is on your side? Sometimes, great photos are made just by being at the right place at the right time, or so it may seem. Knowledge of things like shutter speeds, apertures and lens choices [...]

Also posted in Commentary | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Living on the edge

Last weekend I participated in the Journalism Association of Community College’s NorCal conference. The event was attended by students from community college newspapers from around the northern state. I started out at a community college, taking photo courses and being a staff member on the school’s paper, so when thinking of a topic for my [...]

Also posted in Assignment, Creativity | Tagged | Leave a comment

Reader Photo Challenge assignment: Sunsets

“Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky.” – Rabindranath Tagore Who doesn’t love a good sunset? Not me, I love them. Who can resist the warm colors spread across the sky at the end of the day? Not many. That’s [...]

Also posted in Readers Photo Challenge | Tagged | Leave a comment

Readers Photo Challenge: Filling the void

The current Readers Photo Challenge assignment, “fill-flash,” may proved too challenging for some. Only 2 people sent in all of 3 qualified photos. I can understand trying a new technique can be intimidating but this one is an important one to learn. I use it all the time. In the two weeks between the issuance [...]

Also posted in Flash, lighting | Tagged | Leave a comment

Asking for the moon

On September 27, a rare celestial event occurred: A supermoon eclipse. A supermoon is a full or new moon that happens when it is closest in its slightly elliptical orbit around the earth. It appears 14% bigger and shines 30% more light than a normal moon. Supermoons occur about once in every 14 moons. A [...]

Also posted in Enterprise, Nature, Night | Tagged | Leave a comment

Readers Photo Challenge assignment: Having your fill

The next Readers Photo Challenge assignment entails a technique that may seem complicated but actually can be accessible to even the novice photographer. Fill-flash (or flash fill as it is sometimes called) is method used by using the flash during the day, usually on portraits. It may sound a bit strange to use a flash [...]

Also posted in lighting, Readers Photo Challenge | Tagged | Leave a comment

Readers Photo Challenge: Life in the fast lane

The latest Readers Photo Challenge assignment is “cars.” Cars are more than mere transportation to most of us. They are an extension of ourselves. We look for cars that suit our personalities as well as our lifestyles. When they are financially beyond our reach, we call them our “dream cars.” Some of us even give [...]

Also posted in Readers Photo Challenge | Tagged | Leave a comment

To serve and protect

When you buy a digital single lens reflex (DSLR) camera it’s often suggested or recommended that you get either a skylight or UV filter for the front of lens that comes with the camera as well as one for each additional lens you get. They’re relatively cheap, ranging from $5.00 to $50.00 depending on the [...]

Also posted in Equipment | Tagged | Leave a comment

Are you ready for some football?

The 2015 high school football season is well under way with week 2 starting on Friday. Football is not only a popular sport to play and watch but to photograph as well. Many newspaper and sports photographers have cut their photographic eyeteeth on football. Here are some tips on shooting America’s most popular game. When [...]

Also posted in High Schools, Sports | Tagged | Leave a comment

Readers Photo Challenge assignment: Cars

I’ve owned several cars in my life so far. My first car was a 1965 Chevrolet Impala Super Sport. Despite having only two doors, it was big and ponderous. It was a gas guzzler and polluted the air like a soot-filled chimney. My favorite car was a 1991 Mazda Miata. Fun, nimble and economical, it [...]

Also posted in Readers Photo Challenge | Tagged , | Leave a comment
  • Blog Authors

    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
  • Categories

  • Archives