« return to top
Digital Capture
Fine Art Printing
Canvas Printing
Print Finishing
Color Management
General Information
E-mail sign-up


Digital Printing for the Fine Art Photgrapher (presented by Charles Cramer)

The Dates for 2017 are: March 3-5, June 9-11, and July 14-16
Fee for 3-day class: $1250,  plus lab fee of $75   Class limited to 8
Starts Friday 8:30 AM, ends Sunday 5 PM  (with evening sessions on Friday and Saturday)

2017 Alumni Print-Making "Intensive" Sessions! April 7-9
Fee: $1350, plus Lab fee of $120
Limited to 8. Same meeting times as above. Includes discussions and demonstrations of handling problem images, with majority of class time devoted to helping students optimize and fine-tune their own images, with extra time printing. Prerequisite: Having attended any of charle's previous workshops.

Photographer Rex Naden will be our full-time assistant.

To sign up, please follow the links posted on Charlie's website... www.charlescramer.com

These workshops will cover what you need to know to make the finest digital prints from your film or digital camera files. From adjustment/optimization, to orchestrating the light, I will share what I've learned in 35 years of making prints. You will learn ways to make your images stronger and more compelling. This workshop is not for beginners—you need experience in using Lightroom (or Adobe Camera Raw) and with Photoshop.

The “Fine Art” in the title just means that you are willing to devote the time and effort to explore and optimize your images to their fullest potential. This class will give you the tools to go beyond your film or digital camera file, and spur your imagination to create stronger interpretations of your images. Much discussion will center on critiquing prints (produced both before and during the class) and exploring what makes an exceptional print. This workshop will engage both the right and left sides of your brain!

Students will need to be quite familar with Photoshop, as that is our primary image editor (after Lightroom or Adobe Camera Raw).

There will be a healthy discussion of color management and how to diagnose if a problem is due to your monitor calibration—or your printer profiles—or both! You will receive an invaluable "reference print" that can be used to test your printer, printer profile, and printer dialog settings. The pros and cons of many printer choices will be discussed and demonstrated with actual comparison prints.

This workshop requires homework! About 2 months before the class, I will mail out my 81 page workbook, Optimizing Images For Printing: Effective and Efficient Techniques to Optimize Images. This tutorial includes exercise files, so you can practice these techniques at home. You will discover the power of the most versatile adjustment layer of them all—curves. This handout covers what I consider the essential techniques to optimize and fine tune your images. Learning these techniques will not only increase your productivity, but result in stronger interpretations of your own images. I also ask everyone to bring some of their current prints to the workshop for critiques.

I have presented this workshop over seventy times at various locations around the country. As they say, “practice makes perfect”, and I am constantly refining what and how I present the material in this workshop. I strive to eliminate the superfluous, and present just the information that you need to effectively and efficiently process, refine, and print your own images.

Subjects covered will include

The Master file concept

Using Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom
Getting the most of our your digital capture
What to do in Lightroom—and what to save for Photoshop
Using color management to insure consistent results from monitor to final print
How do I get good profiles for my monitor, scanner, and printer?
Using the supplied "reference print" to diagnose your own setup and profiles

Recommended techniques for working on files
Photoshop selection tools—tips and techniques
Setting density and color balance
Retouching, burning and dodging
Preparation of files for output to various printers
Using the “Smart-sharpening” action script (included)

Can my print be stronger? And what to do to improve it
What makes an effective print?

Archival methods of mounting and matting digital prints

Students will get to fine-tune and print using their own images. I will spend time working with each person individually to discuss and refine the adjustments to your image in RAW development and/or Photoshop. You must be familiar with Photoshop, which would include performing basic tonal adjustments with layers or curves, painting on layer masks, resizing, cropping, etc.

Which workshop to take? All the 3-5 day classes cover essentially the same material. Locations vary, as do facilities and fees charged. The Ansel Adams Workshops include the opportunity to participate in field photography sessions in Yosemite Valley. For both workshops, it is recommended that you bring your own computer or laptop. There are a few computers available, but you will need to let me know to reserve one for you (numbers limited). Picture Element is also offering an "alumni" workshop for those who have survived one of my regular workshops. All the workshops have received excellent ratings from students.

CHARLES CRAMER has been photographing and making prints for 35 years. In 1997, he started scanning his original 4x5 inch transparencies at very high resolution and digitally applying the photographic techniques he used in dye transfer printing. He has taught digital imaging for the Ansel Adams Gallery Workshops, Palm Beach Workshops, Anderson Ranch Workshops, the Lepp Institute of Digital Imaging, the Luminous Landscape workshops, and others. He was also fortunate to have the great Bill Atkinson co-instruct with him at many of these workshops. Charles Cramer’s landscape work has been published by National Geographic Books, Sierra Club, and the Yosemite Association. He has been profiled in PhotoTechniques, PhotoVision, Outdoor Photography (UK), and View Camera Magazines. He is also included in the book “Landscape: The World’s Top Photographers”, now available in paperback! His work can be seen in galleries internationally, and at his website, www.charlescramer.com.

Some Links to Charlie's galleries, interviews and testaments of his beautiful work...

– Charlie's youtube virtual tour of his images at the Center for Photographic Arts in Carmel, CA

– Charlie's own website... CharlesCramer.com

Some comments from Charlie's workshops:

"Cindy and I both send our thanks for a top notch workshop experience. I will be recommending it to all my photographer friends. Your workbook was a joy".
-Charles Fritsch  Bonita Springs, Florida

"Charlie couldn't have been better. He's a gifted teacher - gentle - helpful - makes subject matter clear. Well organized and he covered and completed an amazing amount of information in three days.
-Karl Gregorius  Stockton, California

[concerning the Photoshop Techniques booklet] "It is the best thing I have read about printing in Photoshop. Very few people can write with simplicity and thought for the reader. I love it".
-Tom Upton  San Francisco, California

"Charles is a brilliant instructor. He is organized, precise and thoughtful in approach. Using the handbook pre-class was extremely helpful since going thru it for the second time with Charlie seriously helped retention. I have never attended a workshop where I can go home and fully utilize what I learned."
-Woody Spedden Fort Collins, Colorado

"Any serious photographer that wants to master the making of awesome prints should take this course from Charlie. This was an awesome class and it was also a privilege to learn about Charlie's approach to seeing and making strong images."
-Chris Prestegard  Kapalua, Hawaii

"Everything exceeded my expectations - exponentially".
- Julie Jungers  Portland, Oregon

"I've attended countless workshops and classes on digital imaging and printmaking and Charlie's classes are some of the best! Charlie is a superb instructor and is a master printmaker. I use much of what I learned from him at my business everyday. His wit, sense of humor, and humility make his classes a real pleasure.
-Mike Chambers, Picture Element, Santa Clara, California