Carmel, California

The Center for Photographic Art (CfPA) conducts an annual juried international competition. In 2018, it fielded approximately 1,300 entrants, out of which its jury chose 90 images to hang in its exhibit hall in Carmel, California. From this esteemed and honored group were nine (9) members of the Richard Dischler Photo Workshop (RDPW) from Palo Alto, California. Their comments and images are highlighted below.

Now in its 10th year, the purpose of the RDPW is for photographers of all levels to discover and develop their “photographic voice” through customized group and individual interactions with founder Richard Dischler and other workshop members. This process leads a photographer to elevate his or her images to a level of excellence that demands—and deserves—a final output: The Print. The print is developed to the point that it explodes in expression, bold color, compelling black-and-white and is called to be matted, framed, and hung on a wall of honor where people can view and appreciate it, above and beyond the digital ether, where so many images get lost, forgotten, or disappear forever.

Comments from Members of RDPW:

I have always held The Center for Photographic Art in Carmel in high esteem because it’s associated with Edward Weston and Ansel Adams, among other photographers whom I admire. Naturally, when I received the email that my image was going to be exhibited at the 2018 International Juried Exhibition, I felt proud, honored, and excited. Within a minute, I texted Richard Dischler ( to share the news with him. Richard has taught me the value of classic photography and post processing in the classic black-and-white style.
Golnaz Abdoli

I was surprised and amazed when my picture was chosen among those to be on the “wall” of the CfPA 2018 Juried Exhibition.  It was all the more exciting to learn that pictures by eight other members of the Dischler Workshop had also been juried in.  At the opening reception, it was a scramble for all of us to get out into the courtyard and take some snapshots of our group. We got back into the packed gallery for the awards ceremony, just in time to hear that Golnaz’ picture had won Best of Show.
Jay Bergman

I saw the email come in from the Center for Photographic Arts, and my initial reaction was, and I’m quoting a text message here, “Well, color me shocked.” I was honored to be chosen in an exhibition with such an esteemed history. I was unable to attend the opening, but did visit later. To be shown at the Center’s gallery amongst many other excellent images leaves one both honored and humbled. It is a tribute to this workshop that we number approximately 10% of the show’s population. I am proud and honored to be counted as a member.
Fred Carter

A few year ago, I was invited to a CfPA reception with a friend whose photos hung in their exhibit hall. I had a good time with my friend and other artists on that day, and I wished I was one of them.  This past year, the enjoyment of the reception was enhanced because my photo was chosen for the online exhibit and featured in their catalog. I was delighted and felt appreciated. Additionally, the CfPA reception was a fun and exciting experience as I got the opportunity to meet other artists and see their work. At the same time, it reminded me how much I’ve learned and grown in photography. The experience further reminded me of my teachers, including Richard Dischler, and friends who have coached and encouraged me along with way, and I am still learning.
Kim Dang

Ultimately, while I photograph as a creative personal outlet, to express myself in visual language, I also find it necessary to submit my work for juried review, to have my work judged and see if my images are speaking clearly and saying what I intend them to say. I submitted a handful of my best images to the Center for Photographic Art (CfPA) 2018 International Juried Exhibition. The CfPA enjoys a long and storied history in West Coast photography, and I was honored and thrilled to have one of my images selected.
Elizabeth DeBruin

This particular event at the CfPA was extremely gratifying because the competition was international—a first for me. We were nine out of ninety individuals chosen out a total of thirteen hundred that were recognized as possessing exemplary talent. Our combined success was evidence of the guidance that we Workshop members receive from Richard Dischler. I was proud for him, and I am proud to be associated with so many talented and generous photographers.
Tomás Garza

I was surprised and honored to be included in the CfPA Juried Exhibit. I was able to get down to Carmel to view the art and was ecstatic to see my work included amongst such talented artists. I applaud the CfPA as an organization in their efforts to be inclusive and supportive of photographers of all skill levels. 
Dave Leder

SHOCKED- I was shocked!
DISBELIEF – I thought it must be a mistake.
NUMB/EXCITED- As I read the email again and again, I was a little numb, but this quickly gave way to excitement at having one of my pictures selected for such a prestigious exhibition.
HONORED – I am truly honored to be included among such talented photographers.
GRATEFUL- I am even more grateful to be part of the incredible Richard Dischler Photo Workshop and the opportunity to learn from Dick and the other workshop members.
Greg Lim

Having my print “Sunbathers” chosen to be in an international juried show was a real honor and, needless to say, personally satisfying. That the exhibit was sponsored by an organization that owes its roots to the likes of Ansel Adams and Edward Weston made it even more satisfying. And then to be exhibited along with other members of the Richard Dischler Photo Workshop completed the experience.
Dan McLean

JCC Open House Reception on October 13

Jewish Community Center (JCC)

Hosts Open House Reception for

Richard Dischler Photo Workshops (RDPW)

3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto, CA 94303

Saturday, October 13, 2018

6:00 pm to 7:30 pm


Master’s Exhibit

Over the last nine years, members of the RDPW have received public recognition for their works in local, regional, national, and international juried and non-juried art and photography competitions, exhibits, and publications.

This exhibit represents a small sample from within this growing community of talented and visionary photographers who have received public recognition from 2010 through 2018.

The Masters:

Fred Carter, David Craven, Bruce Fram, Karen Friedmann, Olya Gary, Tomás Garza, Alan Hart, George Herman, Dan McLean, Shubhie Panicker, Lynne Farris Schafer, Daniel Vaquero.


Community Exhibit

This exhibit celebrates the concept of community, defined as a group of people who share a common geography, interests, background ethnicity, religion, or work.  Diving into the particulars, a genuine community generates relationships that in turn create friendships, loyalty, families, the foundation of home, and security.  People in community celebrate the joys of births, communions, marriages, proms, graduations.  They also provide emotional, physical, and even financial support during periods of heartaches and losses.  People in community are rightfully proud of their creation.  Each of these award-winning photographers focus on a different community.

The Community Exhibit Photographers:

Michael Palma – Dia de los Muertos “Day of the Dead”

Roger Spinti – Tindog Tacloban “Rise Again”

Tomás Garza – Los Piscaderos “The Harvesters”

Paul Italiano – Alive in the Streets of San Francisco


For more information and how to enroll in the Workshop, please visit our website at

Kim Dang: Boat Person, Refugee, Survivor and Photographer

War is hell. It is a supremely destructive force of humanity. It kills people, destroys communities, separates loved ones. It also presents people with opportunities to unveil their real character. Acts of courage, heroism, and love abound, pushing back the boundaries of evil inherent in war. Only fortune, acts of God, and the hearts of men and women shape the outcome.

That is part of the fabric woven into Kim Dang’s life story. Her father died in 1968, during the Vietnam War. By 1975, the War was officially over, but for 25-year-old Kim, her life was shattered when the North Vietnamese overtook Saigon, the city where she was born and raised as the youngest of four children. All the joy in her life was gone.

Both Kim and her boyfriend, Chinh Quoc Tran met at work, formerly the tax office of the south Vietnamese government, which was subsequently taken over by the communist regime. He had been a law student at the university and had almost finished his master’s degree. After the communists took over, he still worked at the communist Vietnamese version of the IRS, but he was not replaced because he was young and smart. He also had relatives in the north, so he was protected to a certain degree. Kim’s role in the same organization was at a lower level, was not so safe. She feared she would be conscripted into the communist army and sent to fight in Cambodia, as had already happened to friends and acquaintances.

She and her family attempted to escape, but were caught, and her sister was sent to prison. Rather than succumb to fear, she became more determined than ever to escape this oppressive, evil regime. Chinh was not in favor of escaping at that time, as he was the eldest son in his family, who was expected to say behind and remain with the family.

Loving Kim and not wanting to lose her, he proposed marriage, but she feared that would lead to pregnancy and then she would never escape. She declined his offer.

In a period Kim calls “Black April,” she once again made the choice to risk her life and attempt an escape. She told her boss she was taking a week-long vacation. Instead of staying behind, Chinh’s love for Kim and appreciation for her indefatigable spirit led him to join her in the getaway. Kim and Chinh left behind siblings, parents, and friends and all her earthly possessions.

It cost money to escape. The normal cost of escape was 10 to 15 bars of gold. Kim saved for five years. Because the man planning the escape was a friend and colleague of Chinh’s, he accepted only the two gold bars she had. This friend also owned a 13-meter fishing boat, which he used to help 50 people embark on the arduous and dangerous escape journey out of communist Vietnam.

Everyone was instructed to dress like farmers, dig fox holes at night, and hide in them during the day. Men and women were separated, so Kim and Chinh lost track of each other for awhile, frightening Kim, but not deterring her. They only had a few morsels of rice to eat every day because people who were helping hide them and feed them had to do it on the sly. At 11 o’clock at night, someone with a flashlight signaled them to crawl out of the holes. Dirty and sweaty, they quietly made their way to the boat awaiting them inside Vung Tau City on the Baahria River. They all knew if they got caught, they risked imprisonment, torture, or death. To avoid detection, they lay like sardines on top of each other on the boat bottom. Once they reached international waters of the South China Sea, they tossed everything possible overboard to lighten the load.

The first night sea was stormy. The boat hugged the Thailand coastline for three or four days and nights, crossing choppy, sometimes violent waters. There were no toilets, so conditions were highly unsanitary. Only a handful of rice and little water was apportioned to each person. They finally landed in Malaysia, where they sought safe haven in the first of several UN refugee camps, including Pulau Tanga and Pulau Bidong, where they learned English, underwent psychological exams, and interviewed for sponsorship to her adopted country. Dirty, exhausted, and hungry, Kim also experienced belated relief when the reality of her survival sunk in; they had heard that almost everyone died on two earlier boats that never landed safely.

Kim and Chinh first moved to Seattle, where her brother-in-law had escaped in 1975, and the two subsequently married in Seattle in 1987.

Kim returned to Vietnam in 1992, returned again every year from 2000 to 2008, and not again until 2018. During the latest trip, Kim unveiled more of her family history, discovering secrets and lost relatives.  Using the eyes of her heart, Kim also captured some of her most powerful and timeless images.

Kim’s photographs showcase her native Vietnamese community through a highly sensitive and intimate approach to her subjects, lending each one a gentle, quiet—yet profound—dignity.

In 2000, Kim Dang began taking photographs with a film-based camera, whose images she believes might be worth resurrecting in a digital format. Kim has been an RDPW member for 6 years.

Kim Dang’s images are currently on display at the San Mateo County Art Fair from June 9–17, 2018.

Artist’s Reception at the Triton

On Sunday, November 19, the Triton Museum of Art in Santa Clara hosted an Artist’s Reception in the afternoon to kick off their Winter Exhibitions. One of the exhibitions on display is the Salon at the Triton: 2D Art Competition and Exhibition, which received more than 1,000 entries this time.

The jurors selected approximately 125 works for inclusion in the exhibition, and, among these, 37 were photographs. The Richard Dischler Photo Workshop had a strong presence at the event, with 11 of the 37 selected photographs belonging to ten current workshop members. If we also consider the works from former workshop members, then 14 out of the 37 photos were created by twelve current and former RDPW members. Congratulations!

Richard and the current workshop members with photos on display at the Triton: Fred Carter, Thomas Laye, Golnaz Abdoli, Daniel Vaquero, René Sterenthal, Craig Colvin, George Herman, Kim Lien Dang, Paul Italiano, and Bernard Lint (not in the picture)

Salon at the Triton: 2D Art Competition & Exhibition

Please join your fellow Richard Dischler Photography Workshop members this Sunday, November 19, from 2pm to 4pm for an artist’s reception at the Triton Museum of Art in Santa Clara. The Triton is hosting a statewide competition, the Salon at the Triton: 2D Art Competition & Exhibition, that received over 1,000 entries and several of your classmates were honored to have been selected.

The Triton Museum of Art is located at 1505 Warburton Ave in Santa Clara. The exhibition goes from November 11, 2017 to February 04, 2018. Please visit the Triton’s webpage for more information.

We look forward to seeing you!

Sanchez Art Center Calls for Entries


THE PROJECT: Twelve artists will be selected to create an original archival print on the theme of “Reverie” in an edition of eighteen (18). Accepted artists will have an opportunity to create community through an art exchange with the group of 12 artists, to have increased visibility to collectors, and to raise money for Sanchez Art Center. Each artist will receive a boxed set of all 12 prints, and the remaining 6 sets will be sold to benefit Sanchez Art Center.
ELIGIBILITY: Entrants must be 18 or older, and must be members of the Art Guild of Pacifica, or become a member when entering the competition.
JUROR: Matt Pipes, studio manager at Trillium Graphics and adjunct instructor of printmaking at City College of San Francisco.
ENTRY DEADLINE: Tuesday, Nov 28, 2017, 11:00 pm PST.
Click here for more information and to enter.


THE CALL: Calling all California, Oregon, Washington, and Alaska fine art visual artists! Sanchez Art Center invites you to enter the 2018 Left Coast Annual. Enter up to 20 images at $15 per image.
JUROR: Claudia Schmuckli, Curator in Charge for Contemporary Art and Programming at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.
AWARDS: 2 Exhibition Awards ($250 plus an exhibition in 2019); and 2 Merit Awards ($250).
ENTRY DEADLINE: Tuesday, Jan 30, 2018, 11:00 pm PST.
Click here for more information and to enter.

Call For Entries – Soho Photo Gallery 2018 International Portfolio Competition

Deadline for Entries: January 8, 2018

About the competition: Soho Photo Gallery, located in lower Manhattan is New York City’s longest-running cooperative photography gallery. The gallery is awarding solo shows to three winning photographers. A panel of jurors will make their initial selections based on digital submissions. Final selections will be based on prints.

Three winners will have solo shows in the Spring of 2018. Dates to be announced.

The Jurors: Members of Soho Photo Gallery’s Portfolio Review Committee will jury the competition. The committee has reviewed thousands of portfolios since the gallery’s beginning in 1971. In so doing, the gallery has exhibited prints by some of the finest contemporary photographers throughout the world.

Eligibility: The competition is open to all photographers 18 or older, excluding members of Soho Photo Gallery.

The Sponsor: Pina Zangaro, designers and manufacturers of fine presentation books, is providing customized portfolio boxes to each winning photographer.

To enter the competition click here

For a full prospectus click here

Print/mat matrix

Here is a matrix of mat sizes, which is helpful when deciding which sizes to order based on your print size: RDPW-Mat-Matrix

For example, to order double mats for 6×9 prints: by convention, we use a 0.5 inch reveal on all sides, so a 6×9 inch print will be under a 16×20 mat with a 7×10 inch center cut opening, under a 16×20 mat with an 8×11 inch center cut opening.  We order Crescent Select mats, in color White Wash (or White Glove).

Similarly for any other size — the center cut hole + 1 inch increment gets a 0.5 inch reveal on all sides.

Crescent Select can be ordered from mat providers such as redimat (under the Conservation tab on their website).

Salon at the Triton 2017: 2D Art Competition & Exhibition

The Triton Museum of Art in Santa Clara is accepting submissions to the Salon at the Triton 2017 Competition and Exhibition. RDPW members are encouraged to meet with Richard for image review. The submission deadline is on September 29, and more information can be found at the Triton’s webpage.