Category Archives: lighting

Lighting design

There was a peculiarity to light shining on the exterior of the Lincoln Memorial. Overall it’s well lit except at the center where there is a falloff in illumination. There seems to be lights on either side of the monument to light up the ends but they don’t overlap much at the center leaving a [...]

Also posted in Night | Tagged , | Leave a comment

A bokeh primer

Apple recently released it new iPhone 7 and 7 Plus smartphones. One of the features of the 7 Plus that the company touts is its ability to create bokeh, an effect that was previously only done by digital single lens reflex cameras (DSLR). The bokeh effect is known by most experienced photographers, but probably not [...]

Also posted in Column, Techniques, Tips | 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 Column, Flash | 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 Column, Readers Photo Challenge | Tagged | Leave a comment

Waste not, want not II

A few weeks ago I covered the announcement of an at-risk youth school run by the National Guard, called the Youth ChalleNGe program. The Guard plans to convert vacant buildings at the Sharp Army Depot in Lathrop. California Army National Guard Brigadier Gen. James Garbielli led a small group of dignitaries and media on a [...]

Also posted in Light | Leave a comment

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, [...]

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

Always watch your backgrounds

You can never talk too much about how important backgrounds are to a photo. A good one can enhance a picture’s readability. A bad one can obscure your subject and distract from the image’s overall appeal. Here are two examples of how a slight and simple change in the background can make a big difference. [...]

Posted in lighting | Tagged | Leave a comment

A casualty

For my last column on how to light glass, I decided to bring a few items from home to photograph. I checked out the refrigerator and saw a bottle of sparkling cider that would work nicely as a subject. I rooted around some more and found a bottle of wine tucked away in the back. [...]

Also posted in Equipment, Light | Tagged , | Leave a comment

House of glass

A few weeks ago a reader emailed me asking how to photograph jewelry and glassware. She wanted to record them for insurance purposes. Glass is one of the hardest things to photograph. Its shiny surface can pick up every little reflection. To make a proper photo of a glass item you have to take great [...]

Also posted in Column, Equipment, Studio | Tagged | Leave a comment

Wax on, wax off.

There is a scene in the 1984 movie “The Karate Kid” where Daniel (Ralph Macchio), a bullied young man wanting to learn how to defend himself, is given a seemingly meaningless task given to him by mentor Mr. Miyagi (Pat Morita) of washing and waxing several cars. Miyagi instructs Daniel on waxing the cars with [...]

Also posted in Column, Light | 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