charles cramer

Charles Cramer included in "Why Photographs Work: 52 Great Images -- Who Made Them, What Makes Them Special, and Why" by George Barr. (And yes, the title is printed backwards, like looking through a view camera...)

Why Photographs Work book cover

available through Amazon


Charles Cramer is one of the 38 photographers in
"The World's Top Photographers: Landscape"

World's top Photographers

by Terry Hope, published by Rotovision, now available in paperback through bookstores and

         What's New

February 2016

All of my Digital Printing Workshops, both at Picture Element and the Ansel Adams Gallery, are now full. There are waiting lists for all these workshops, and if you want to be on the wait list, send me an email.   If you want to be on my email list and receive advance notice of these workshops, send me an email.   I never give out email addresses, and only send about five or six emails out a year.

December 2015

My Workshops page has now been updated for 2016. My workshops on Digital Printing held at Picture Element in Santa Clara, California are now open for enrollment. My workshop with John Sexton at Mono Lake in October 2016 has a few openings left. The Ansel Adams Gallery workshops for May and November 2016 were previously announced, and are now full. There is a waiting list, to which I recommend anyone interested in the classes to add their name—contact

I am also teaching a two-day workshop on Digital Printing in Dallas, Texas on Feb. 20-21. See all the details on the Workshops page. This workshop is in conjunction with an exhibition at Sun to Moon Gallery opening Feb. 20.

Sun to Moon Gallery
1515 Levee Street, Dallas, TX 75207
phone 214 745-1199
Details at

January 2015

All my workshops for the remainder of this year are full, except for the Moab Photo Symposium this May. Go to my workshops page (at the bottom) to read about it (or click on the link above). I do have waiting lists for the other workshops that I present at Picture Element in Santa Clara. Just go to my contact page and send me an email. If you want to be on my email list and receive advance notice of these workshops, send me an email. I never give out email addresses, and only send about five or six emails out a year.

September 2014

All my workshops for the remainder of this year are full. You can ask to be on the waiting lists, but they are fairly long. However, I will be announcing the 2015 workshop schedule near the end of the year. If you want to receive the email announcement about this, please go to my Contact page, and send me an email asking to be on the email list. I never give out email addresses, and only send 5-6 emails out a year.

December 2013

My Workshops page has now been updated for 2014. My workshops on Digital Printing held at Picture Element in Santa Clara, California are now open for enrollment. My workshops through the Adams Gallery and the John Sexton Workshops have been previously announced and are currently full. There are waiting lists, however.
I am also offering two one-day workshops on Digital Printing, the first in Dallas, Texas on Jan. 10, and then Fresno, California on May 4th. See all the details on the Workshops page.

These one-day workshops above are in conjunction with solo shows at both these locations:

Sun to Moon Gallery
"Charles Cramer: Harmony of Light"
January 9through February 15, 2014
1515 Levee Street, Dallas, TX 75207
phone 214 745-1199
Opening Reception, Saturday January 11, 5 to 8 PM
Details at

Spectrum Gallery
May 1st through June 1st
608 E. Olive Ave, Fresno, CA 93728
phone 559 266-0691
Opening Reception Saturday May 3, 6 to 9 PM

Lecture on Ansel Adams  (with music!)
On Saturday night, January 18th, I will be presenting a half-hour talk on "How I became a Photographer and met Ansel Adams". This will include my experiences at two of his workshops, attending his 82nd birthday party, playing the piano at his home, and other tidbits. This evening presentation is actually sponsored by the San Jose Chapter of the American Guild of Organists, and will also include organ music! Darryl Parker, Mike Cala, and I will be each playing the pipe organ. I will talk about the connections between music and photography, and will include some rare recordings of Ansel playing the piano. Following will be a reception where some of my photographs will be exhibited.
This event will be held at St. Mark's Episcopal Church, 1957 Pruneridge Ave, Santa Clara, CA. (408) 296-8383. Saturday, Jan. 18th at 7:30 PM. All invited, admission is free.

January 2013

My workshops for 2013 are now up on my Workshops page. I am continuing to do workshops through the Ansel Adams Gallery, John Sexton Workshops,and my workshop series at Picture Element in Santa Clara, California. These fill up quickly, and the only openings are in the June and November Picture Element Workshops.

I will also be a part of two exhibitions this year:

The new Lumnos Gallery in Santa Barbara, California, from Jan. 16 through March 3rd. The show will also feature photographs by photographers Marc Muench and Jeff Jones. The gallery is located at 1324 State Street, Suite J, Santa Barbara, CA. Phone is 805 729-2184.

The Ansel Adams Gallery in Yosemite has invited me back for my 18th solo show . It will run from May 30th through July 27th, 2013. The gallery is located near the Visitor Center in "downtown" Yosemite valley.

Loveliness video preview




A New Video   This year I had the pleasure of creating a video with composer Brent Heisinger, who asked me to provide images to go with one of his new piano pieces. Brent taught at San Jose State University when I was a music student there, and it is performed by the current piano professor, Gwendolyn Mok. The piece is named Loveliness,  it's about 4 minutes long, and—well, it's lovely! Click on the image above to see it on Youtube. It was great fun to choose the appropriate images, the change points, dissolve times, etc.

December 2012

The workshops I teach with John Sexton have now been anounced, and details are available on my workshops page.   My 2013 digital printing workshops at Picture Element will be announced within a few weeks (near the end of December).  To get the announcement the day it comes out, please join my email mailing list.

January 2012

My workshops for 2012 are now on my Workshops page. I am continuing to do workshops through the Ansel Adams Gallery, John Sexton Workshops, my workshop series in Santa Clara, California, and a one-day workshop (Jan. 13) in Dallas Texas for Sun to Moon Gallery.
I will also be a part of two exhibitions that open in January:

Sun to Moon Gallery
"Charles Cramer: Illuminated Prints"
January 12 through February 11, 2012
1515 Levee Street, Dallas, TX 75207
phone 214 745-1199
Opening Reception, Saturday January 14, 5 to 8 PM

"The Color and Magic of Nature"
with photographers Charles Cramer, Joe Decker, and Oliver Klink
January 20 through March 8, 2012
1099 "E" Street, Hayward, California
Opening Reception, Friday, January 20, 6:30 to 9:30 PM

The Ansel Adams gallery has recently hit a milestone—selling 1000 of my fine prints! It's taken quite a while, and I am grateful to everyone at the gallery for helping to make this happen. I often joke that the hard part of photography is not making the images—it's selling them! I feel honored to have been associated with the gallery, both as an artist and workshop instructor for over 25 years. I subscribe to their mission statement, that to be successful—do what you love to do—not what would just bring a quick profit....

January 2011

Lots of news! I am delighted to announce that I will again be teaching two different workshops this year with John Sexton. The workshop we presented last fall at Mono Lake was in such demand that we'll be offering two identical sessions this October. John is a premier figure in photographic education. In the 70's, he was Ansel Adams' assistant and technical consultant, and has always been very dedicated to teaching. His John Sexton Photography Workshops were selected by American Photo Magazine as one of the "Twelve Best Photography Workshops" (July/August 2008 issue.) All the details are on John's webpage, or on my workshop page. You'll also find all my other workshops for 2010 there, as well. There are still places available in the November printing workshop at Picture Element.

I'm one of the participants in a new book—Why Photographs Work - 52 Great Images: Who Made Them, What Makes Them Special, and Why, published by RockyNook. Author George Barr has assembled an eclectic mix of photographs, and analyzes each one, along with comments on the images from each photographer. I am delighted to be included in this wonderful book. Find it on Amazon here.

Print Sale The Online Photographer blog should be read by anyone interested in photography. It would be at the top of any list of photography blogs, in my opinion. I've known the editor, Mike Johnston, since the mid-ninties. Back then he was editor of PhotoTechniques magazine, and featured my photographs in several issues. The Online Photographer occasionally runs a print sale, and I am delighted that Mike has asked me to participate. We are still working out all the details, but I can tell you that we will be offering two different prints of mine, at a special, one-time only price that's less than half of the standard. See the announcement here. And check in periodically to the Online Photographer to find out all the details in the next few weeks. The sale will be available for only 5 days. I've never done anything like this before...

October 2010

Cascade Creek in Spring







Exhibition and Talk at the Center for Photographic Art, Carmel, California:

Earth, Water, Light
October 23, 2010 through January 9, 2011
Lecture: Photography: Interpretation and Performance, Saturday October 23, 2010, 2:30 PM
Opening reception: Saturday, October 23, 2010, 4-6 PM
Located in the Sunset Center, 9th and San Carlos Streets, Carmel

The gallery here has a legendary history as the home of the Friends of Photography, founded in 1967 by Ansel Adams, Brett Weston, and other greats. When the Friends left for San Francisco in 1989, the Center for Photographic Art was created to take over this same space. I remember visiting here countless times over the past four decades. So, I was especially delighted when they asked little ol' me to have a solo show here. I will have almost 60 prints on display, with several new images and many recently-refined older images.

The Center has also asked me to give a talk, just before the opening reception. I will be talking about the similarities (and differences) in interpreting music and images. Because I believe making an "expressive" print is not that different from playing and interpreting a piece of music expressively. I will be illustrating the talk with many images, sound clips, and videos. Admission free. I hope to see you there...


August 2010

Exhibition at Viewpoint Gallery, 2015 J Street, Midtown Sacramento, CA    Phone: 916-441-2341

Exhibit Dates:   Wednesday, Sept. 8 - Saturday. October 2nd, 2010
Artist Reception:   Friday, Sept. 10, 5:30 to 9:30 PM
"Second Saturday" Reception:   Saturday, Sept. 9, 5:00 to 9:30 PM

I will have about 50 prints on display, including some rather large ones (including a 60x47 print!)

Viewpoint has been around in various forms since the early 80s, and is a thriving member-supported community with over 500 members. A few years ago, they moved into a bigger space in downtown Sacramento, giving it much greater exposure. The "Second Saturday" Art Walk occurs in Sacramento once a month with over 20 participating galleries, along with other exciting events (outdoor fashion shows, bands performing on street corners, etc). They tell me the gallery will have over 1,000 visitors that night. I will be there both nights, and invite you to drop in.

I will also be doing a 3/4 day workshop on that Saturday, from 9 AM to 3 PM on Optimizing Your Images for Printing. I will discuss my approach to using Lightroom and Photoshop, with special attention paid to optimizing detail in the problem areas—highlights and shadows. Tuition is $95 for Viewpoint members, $145 for non-members.

February 2010

Lecture at Center for Photographic Art, cosponsored by the Imagemakers

I'll be talking about all kinds of (hopefully) interesting things! Here's the details:

Interpreting the Image
Saturday, February 6th at 2 PM
Sunset Center, Carmel, California
$10 admission (members of CPA or Imagemakers free)

“Interpreting a photographic image is dependent on how the human brain processes images,” says Cramer, a master printmaker with rare expertise in dye-transfer and digital printing. His presentation will include illustrations of his personal journey from black & white darkroom prints, through dye-transfer color printing, to his current method of digitally making inkjet prints.
Following in the footsteps of Ansel Adams, who said “the negative is the score and the  print is the performance,” Charles will focus on the importance of interpretation in “optimizing” an image, through techniques that make the image reflect more of what is “felt” in exposing a scene.

January 2010

I am delighted to announce that I will be teaching two workshops this year with John Sexton. I first met John in the dawn of my photographic prehistory (late 70s!) when he was assisting at an Ansel Adams Workshop in Yosemite. He later went on to become Ansel's assistant and technical consultant. He has always been very dedicated to teaching, and his John Sexton Photography Workshops were selected by American Photo Magazine as one of the "Twelve Best Photography Workshops" (July/August 2008 issue.) We'll be doing two different workshops together, and all the details are on John's webpage, or on my workshop page. You'll also find all my other workshops for 2010 there, as well..

I just returned from San Diego, where I have a show with the Ordover Gallery in the San Diego Natural History Museum. It's a wonderful space, and quite large as you can see below (those are all my prints). The show will be up until May 2nd.    Update!  Extended until May 23rd.

Charles Cramer San Diego Show 








June 2009

Last-minute Addition!   A special two-day workshop taught with my friend Keith Walklet in Yosemite:

Making a Photograph: From Field to Print   July 18 & 19    Class Fee: $295

This 2-day lecture/demonstration presents highlights from the 3-5 day workshops that Walklet and Cramer present for the Ansel Adams Gallery. This will include valuable insights on photographing in the field, exposure of film and digital captures, and creating effective compositions. Plus techniques that will allow you to optimize these images to their fullest potential using Lightroom and Photoshop, all leading to the creation of compelling prints. This course will "open your eyes" to imagine the many possibilities within your image. The various tips and techniques will then allow you to optimize your images to their fullest and strongest potential.

Please email or call 888-361-7622 for more information and to sign up.

The Ansel Adams Gallery will also host a special BBQ held in back of Ansel's old Yosemite home (in back of the gallery) on Saturday night of the workshop!

May 2009

The Ansel Adams Gallery in Yosemite is now presenting my 16th show! It's entitled "Intimate Landscapes" and is on view until May 27th. There will be a reception on May 15th, from 3 to 5:30 PM, and I will be there. You can take a look at most of the images in the show here.

I'm delighted to be a part of a new book, First Light: Five Photographers Explore Yosemite's Wilderness, published by Heyday Books, in association with the Yosemite Association and the Yosemite Fund. The book will be available in July, but you can pre-order it now on Amazon! The book includes photographs by me and my friends Karl Kroeber, Scot Miller, Mike Osborne, and Keith S. Walklet. Here's a description of the book, from Heyday:

Five master photographers offer varied interpretations of the Sierra wilderness

Ansel Adams led regular trips into the Yosemite backcountry as part of his efforts to protect this rare instance of untouched nature and, as a result, introduced thousands to its beauty. Following his example, the Yosemite Fund asked five well-known Yosemite photographers to once again bring the wonders of the wilderness to the general public.

For five years, these five photographers spent a part of their summers in Yosemite's wilderness region, which covers more than one thousand square miles of almost indescribable raw beauty, and the camaraderie that developed between them is evident in the reminiscences and musings that accompany their photographs. The result of this uncommon collaboration is a book of glorious prints, each imbued with its creator's distinct style.


January 2009

Finally -- I've added 24 new images to the galleries! You can find these under "new images" at the bottom of the list in the drop-down Galleries menu. These include images from my Tasmania trip, "Appalachian Spring" trip, and my October trip to the Southwest.

December 2008

My 2009 workshop schedule is now up at the workshops page. I'll be offering seven workshops this year, through Picture Element in Santa Clara, California, the Ansel Adams Gallery in Yosemite National Park, and the Lepp Institute of Digital Imaging in Los Osos, California.

April 19 - May 30

The Ansel Adams Gallery in Yosemite National Park will be presenting my 15th show! There's a reception scheduled for Sunday, May 11th, from 5 to 7 PM. Some of my newest work will be up. Maybe I'll see you there?

April 2008

I'm delighted to be included in the "Adobe Lightroom Tasmania Adventure!" About a dozen photographers are traveling Down Under to photograph the Australian island of Tasmania. We're all shooting digitally, and every day will gather to process our RAW files in Lightroom. This is also co-sponsored by O'Reilly publishers, and they should have a blog up at some point detailing the adventures of the group. It's a good thing I've been to Australia in the past, as I already speak some  'strine.  (That's "Australian", but pronounced as one syllable).... You can follow the adventure at the O'Reilly adventure page. It will have blog posts from the participating photographers.


March 2008

Welcome to my completely redesigned website! I've almost doubled the number of images, and remade all the jpegs from scratch. The website is also "dynamic", which means I can update it much more easily in the future. I even have an image category (under galleries) called "new". All I can say is....What a lot of work!!!


PhaseONe Brochure


March 19

PhaseOne, who make the best medium-format digital backs around, including the P45, recently interviewed me for one of their glossy brochures. It's a six page pdf file with seven of my images, and a nice interview concerning photography with film versus digital capture. Click on the image to download the brochure from the PhaseOne site.