Doug Stockdale's Singular Images

August 29, 2016

Bruce Barnbaum -The Art of Photography

Filed under: Photography — Tags: , , , , — Doug Stockdale @ 2:49 am

Bruce_Barnbaum-The_Art_of_Photography_cover

Copyright 1994 (6th printing, 2013) Bruce Barnbaum

Bruce Barnbaum’s The Art of Photography, An approach to Personal Expression, which was first published in 1994, is a photographic book that comes up frequently as a resource for photographers who make submissions to LensCulture. Thus as a submission reviewer for LensCulture and if I was going to suggest to photographers that this could be a great reference book for them, I should darn know what Barnbaum has written and understand why this book could be pertinent to them.

I first met Barnbaum many, many years ago when he and John Sexton were developing their zone system/creativity workshops, which at the time both were heavily influenced by the west coast school of photographic modernist. John Sexton went on to be one of the last photographic assistants for Ansel Adams. So no surprise that Barnbaum’s book has a heavy emphasis on black and white techniques; Zone system for film (roll and sheet), film development, filters, black and white papers and darkroom printing (yes, the wet darkroom, not Photoshop), bellows and reciprocity factors (assuming you were using at least a 4×5” view camera), film density, etc and all the necessities for black and white analog photography. So no surprise, this is a solid technical reference book for those using a black and white analog medium (a photographic space I worked in for 15 years).

So the real question for me is Barnbaum’s book relevant to a photographer who is working on contemporary concepts and projects? For me the answer is yes and no and really depends on the individual and their openness (guess you could call this a guarded “yes”). There are chapters which discuss “What are the Elements Composition”, Photographic Realism, Abstraction and Art, Thoughts on Creativity, Toward a Personal Philosophy and Artist Integrity, but again, from the viewpoint of a modernist, not contemporary photographer. This is also a chapter on how to use the zone system for digital photography, both color and black and white, which is relevant to individuals who have digital exposure and digital printing issues.

Nevertheless if you read Barnbaum’s concepts (and get beyond his modernist examples) to understand the basic questions that are being asked, these could be applicable to any artist; What is your emotional response to what you are thinking about photographing; What is your personal point of view; Subject matter ultimately becomes secondary to the artist seeing, vison (read: concept) and philosophy of life. With an advanced degree in mathematics from UCLA and an on-going interest in physics, don’t be put off by when suddenly he introduces quantum mechanics theory to discuss a point about creativity.

In the final chapter, Barnbaum states that a photographer/artist shouldn’t try to analyze something to death before going and actually doing it (whether the zone system for film or Photoshop for digital); “be willing to experiment with new tools, new subject matter, new ways of seeing and composing, new ways to interpret the scene”. Makes sense to me.

Publisher: rockynook (Santa Barbara, CA)   http://www.rockynook.com

The book has stiff-cover, glued/perfect bound binding, four-color lithography, Index, and printed in Korea

Cheers

Bruce_Barnbaum-The_Art_of_Photography_1

Bruce_Barnbaum-The_Art_of_Photography_2

Bruce_Barnbaum-The_Art_of_Photography_3

Bruce_Barnbaum-The_Art_of_Photography_4

Bruce_Barnbaum-The_Art_of_Photography_5

Bruce_Barnbaum-The_Art_of_Photography_6

August 24, 2016

Hasselblad Ready for its close-up: part 2

Filed under: Photography — Tags: , , — Doug Stockdale @ 4:33 am

Pentax_Spotmeter_V

Pentax Spotmeter V, copyright 2016 Douglas Stockdale

In my earlier post about determining the exposure index (EI) for the two 21mm extension tubes on my 150mm Sonnar Hasselblad lens, I was pinged with some questions about the +1 exposure compensation conclusion. I am realizing that with the advent of digital photography which really gained traction in the early to mid 2000’s, there is an entire generation of digital photographers who are not familiar with film and manual light meters, which should not be much of a surprise, but sometimes the extent and breath of the non-analog experience is interesting.

In the zone system exposure parlance you start with your basic EI, in this case the ASA of the film is the basic or neutral starting point. My Fiju Reala 100 color film has a ASA of 100, which I dial into my Pentax Spotmatic V, a manual 1 degree light meter. I acquired this current meter many moons ago with my earlier Minolta 1 degree spot has a “traumatic” moment (yep, while hiking I dropped in on the rocks, pretty traumatic for both me and the only light meter I had with me).

To complete my exposure compensation test, I varied the f/stop by a half stop stop per exposure. A plus one (+1) stop essential doubles the amount of available light during the film exposure over the neutral setting As example, I had set neural at 1/30 at f/4, thus the +1 was 1/15 at f/4 to double the amount of light during the exposure. I extended the test exposures to a +2-1/2 stops, which began to really over expose the film. The gray card I was photographing and film density was visually best to me with only the +1 stop. Now I could meter the scene with my light meter at set for the film ASA (e.g. 100) then take that meter reading and open one stop or alternatively I could set my meter ASA to 50 (half of the 100) and use the resulting setting.

The later option of altering the film ASA takes a bit less thinking ;- )

Btw, the nice thing about this 1 degree spot meter is that it has a number of settings; f stop for the lens aperture, T (time) for the exposure duration, ASA for the film speed and then something called the Linear Scale, which so happens is also a setting available with the older Hasselblad lens like my 150mm Sonar. Inside the meter, the linear scale is the value shown during the metering function. Once the Linear scale value is selected on the lens, the appropriate f stop and shutter speed T are coupled on the lens and when you change either the f/stop or the exposure duration, the other automatically changes due to the coupling function.

cheers!

Pentax_Spotmeter_V_exposure_dial

August 20, 2016

Hasselblad ready for its closeup

Filed under: Memory pods, Photography — Tags: , , , — Doug Stockdale @ 9:34 pm

08-05-16_Hasselblad_150_Sonnar_2x_21mm_tubes

Hasselblad 500 C/M copyright 2016 Douglas Stockdale

The next phase of my Memory Pods photographic project is a switch-up to color film in conjunction with my Hasselblad. To obtain the close up framing I needed I added two 21mm extension tubes to my 150 mm f/4 Sonar lens. I had read about the exposure compensation required for a 21 mm extension tube with this lens and had guessed that since I had two of these, it would be a 2x exposure factor (my calculations indicated a +1 stop was needed).

As an engineer, I am prone to testing, thus figured the best thing to do is in conjunction with my gray card, complete an exposure compensation test to verify the anticipated compensation required for the two 21mm tubes. This is similar to the process I used when first learning the black & white zone system to determine my EI (exposure Index) for my Tri-X roll film in conjunction with my HC-110 film developer. In this case with the Kodak color film (EI 160), the exposure compensation determination is in conjunction with my pro-finishing lab in Irvine. Also a process needed when you buy the less expensive camera prism without the thru the lens light meter. (Hey, my 1 degree spot meter has not let me down yet!)

Then a slight hiccup in my giddy-up; after assembling the two extension tubes to the 150 mm lens and mounting the assembly on the camera, the shutter did not function. At all. After a hour (or more) of tweaking the camera, lens and extension tubes, I finally found my problem: one of the extension tubes was not cocked and primed. I had purchased both of the extension tubes used, but I had only previously used one of these tubes. If you are not familiar with Hasselblad camera gear, you have to cock the lens shutter to remove the lens from the camera body. So in my case, one of the 21mm extension tubes was out of sync with the rest of the lens assembly and maybe why this used extension tube was so in-expensive; it did not function properly and was probably assumed to be broken.

Thus I used a little trick with a very small screw-driver to carefully cock the 21mm extension tube and get the entire lens assembly back in sync. Presto! I was now back in business to finish my exposure testing and then high-tail the film off to the film lab.

And so now the processed film results are back and yes (drum roll, please) I am able to confirm a +1 exposure compensation is needed for this lens set up. So I will now be working on this project during the Fall with color film. I am so excited ;- )

Cheers!

FYI, one of my photographs from the Memory Pods project will be in the Irvine Fine Arts Center “All Media 2016” exhibition, with the opening September 3rd, 4-6pm.

August 1, 2016

LACP Exposure 2016 portfolio reviews

Filed under: Art Market, Photography — Tags: , , — Doug Stockdale @ 5:04 pm

07-31-16_Gerhard_Clausing_LACP_Exposure_2016

Los Angeles Center of Photography “Exposure 2016” 2016 copyright Douglas Stockdale

As I had announced last month, I was honored to be a portfolio reviewer at the LACP “Exposure 2016” event this last weekend, which was hosted by two all-stars: Julia Dean and Sarah Hadley. I was very fortunate to join a wonderful group of photographic, gallery and publishing professionals providing these reviews.

I was very impressed in the preparation and professionalism of the photographers who participated, as well as the quality, consistency and conceptual content of their photographic portfolios. I was only able to review portfolios on Sunday and had great discussions and hopefully informative interactions with Gerhard Clausing (above), Tami Bahat, Matt Shallenberger, Thomas Hobbs, Christopher Sheils (who may get the award for traveling the furthest for this event from Australia), and Linad I’Anson.

I also thought it might be fun that each photographer choose their signature print for a portfolio review portrait (also posted on my Instagram @douglasstockdale), with Christopher Sheils choosing a pose that emulated the subject in his photograph.I did review one book dummy presented by Thomas Hobbs, which I thought was pretty cool, but probably destined to be self published due to the nature of his creative design. He is shown below with the inside spread of the book covers.

In between reviews, I also had a chance to share my Memory Pods portfolio with Aline Smithson (Editor/Founder Lenscratch) and Julia Dean, receiving some great feedback and ideas on how to advance this project.

One outcome of this event is that I am now a member of the Los Angeles Center of Photography!

Photographs inside with my Samsung S5, so pardon the slight blurs (yeah, the Canon 5DMkIII was in the car, but too lazy to run and grab it)

07-31-16_Tami_Bahat_LACP_Exposure_2016

07-31-16_Matt_Shallenberger_LACP_Exposure_2016

07-31-16_Linda_IAnson_LACP_Exposure_2016

07-31-16_Thomas_Hobbs_LACP_Exposure_2016

07-31-16_Christopher_Sheils_LACP_Exposure_2016

July 26, 2016

Swim competition photography

Filed under: Photography — Tags: , — Doug Stockdale @ 5:21 pm

07-23-16 Zach 200m breaststroke focusing_4820

Zach, San Juan Hills H.S., San Juan Capistrano, July, 2016 copyright Douglas Stockdale

Last weekend I attended Zach’s swim meet and I continue to be vexed on how to capture good photographs of the swimmers, because if they are swimming well, you do not see much of their faces unless it’s the breast stroke, then all you capture is huge open gaping mouths as they come up to grab some air.

Thus, I deferred to some environmental portraits, such as this one above. I am tempted to name this “The calm in the Midst of Chaos”. I set up the 200mm on the Canon5D at the opposite side of the pool finding a unobstructed spot between two of the coaches tables. Then I made multiple exposures and captured this pause in the action with his meditative gaze at the pool, which was his first 200 meter event. I like that he is so every lightly touching the starting platform as to ground himself, and in the background are all of the swimmers and others moving about. It did not help that while he was in line waiting for his turn, his google strap broke and he had to quickly high-tail it back to his swim gear and obtain his back-up training googles.

So I’m actually pretty happy about this photograph.

Cheers!

July 13, 2016

Irvine Fine Art Center – All Media 2016 acceptance

172 06-10-14_Memory_Pods_Loss 091501_2

Memory Pods – Loss 2014 copyright Douglas Stockdale

I am very excited and honored to announce that Loss from my Memory Pods project was juried into the Irvine Fine Art Center (IFAC) All Media 2016 exhibition. The juror was Dan Cameron who most recently was the past Chief Curator for the Orange County Museum of Art (OCMA) and who is now an independent curator. This acceptance is another great validation on the response to my Memory Pods project that I received during Photo Independent earlier this year.

The All Media 2016 exhibition dates are September 3rd – October 22, 2016 at the Irvine Fine Art Center, 14321 Yale Ave., Irvine CA. The opening reception is Saturday, September 3rd, from 4-6pm. Needless to say, I hope to see you there!

Meanwhile, this limited edition print is in the process of being archival framed.

As to the photograph, I was taken by the slow demise of the seed pods of this plant and how many were falling off and in this case, one seed pod stubbornly remained. A potential metaphor about one remaining and persistent memory amidst the turbulent chaos when all else appears to be failing.

What I need to work on now is getting my web site updated with more of the photographs from this project. If its not one think, its another, but this is all good.

Cheers!

June 30, 2016

LensCulture profile

Filed under: Art Market, Ciociaria, Photography — Tags: , , — Doug Stockdale @ 4:17 am

10-22-10_Ciociaria_0235_Morolo_16x20

Ciociaria copyright 2010 Douglas Stockdale

A curator/book designer just referred me to the LensCulture.com publication group and so now I am in the middle of developing a photographers profile on their site. Similar to my recent Art Photo Index profile, I am starting with my Ciociaria project photographs and book information. I included an edited version of my Biography and CV, which I may tweak over the next several months.

I was subsequently invited to also be a part of the LensCulture “Insider” team, a group which is composed of Editors, Reviewers, Jurors, Curators and Publishers. This is a pretty impressive international group that I am honored to be joining. I am guessing that this was probably a result of a combination of being the Editor/Founder of The PhotoBook as well as my recent participation as a photobook juror and exhibition talks that I provided at Photo Independent last month. As an Insider, this means I will be participating as a LensCulture submission reviewer, which should be pretty interesting.

I will be getting more into the thick of things in the next few days, so probably more about this soon.

Cheers!

 

June 29, 2016

Art Photo Index listing

Filed under: Art Market, Ciociaria, Photography, Projects/Series — Tags: , — Doug Stockdale @ 1:18 am

Fiuggi_1996_12-11-10

Fiuggi Passage Way 2010 copyright Douglas Stockdale

When Art Photo Index (API) was launched a few years back, I was provided with an invitation to join, which I immediately accepted. Regretfully I was in-between web sites and photographic projects and really unsure as what to provide for my profile, thus I opted for the minimal profile information to get started. As such my API site lay relatively dormant until recently.

After attending Photo Independent I realized that it was time to get the various supporting web-sites and photographic indexes up to speed, which included API. Since I have an interest in exhibiting my Ciociaria project, that book project is as good as any place as a cornerstone for my photography. I selected 21 photographs from the Ciociaria project to feature on API. I also found out that API has included some new profile options for photographers to discuss and show their work, which are some nice additions.

Since API is a part of the photo-eye group, it is easy to link up my two books that are available to purchase from photo-eye to the site. Although I initially had trouble linking my Pine Lake artist book, the API team quickly figured out the issue and made the necessary changes. So I think my profile is looking good and recommend you check it out.

Hopefully, more to come!

Cheers!

 

June 21, 2016

Re:borN Dance Interactive

Filed under: Photography — Tags: , — Doug Stockdale @ 5:48 pm

06-12-16 OCMA RE-borN Dance Interactive_KI6A2797v2_B-W

2016 copyright Douglas Stockdale

A couple of weekends ago I was again the event photographer at the Orange County Museum of Art (OCMA) Family Day. Family Day at OCMA is a fun event for me to photograph candids of the children and their parents interacting with the surrounding art as well as the art projects that the OCMA team provide for the kids to work with.

Occasionally Family Day creates more creative opportunities for me with some of the performances that are provided in conjunction with this event. More so when the dance is contemporary and interpretive and I think the occasion then allows me experiment with more creative options.

To photograph the Re:borN Dance Interactive performance, I wanted to visualize the amazing energy of the performers, which for me is to select a slower shutter speed to allow some blurring. To further abstract the performance, I also deferred to black and white images.

For my part, I was fortunate to be “staff” and able to move away from the audience to less obstructive view point. In this case there was a large painting on the background wall that I thought might allow some interesting juxtapositions with the dancers. The painting was uniform enough that it also allowed the performers to create their own space. It also allowed me to place the performers within the OCMA physical context, which meet my client goals. To further enhance the visual perspective, I sat on the floor such that I was looking upward towards the performers and allow them to tower above the paintings frame (yes, a bit of a William Eggleston influence). In this case, having a 24 – 105 zoom allowed me to constantly adjust for the performers while they moved through their performances.

Nevertheless, for OCMA I provided a selection of color images. For Boroka Nagy, the Artistic Director of Re:born, she received both the color as well as my B&W.

Cheers!

06-12-16 OCMA Re-borN Dance Interactive_KI6A2808v2_B-W

06-12-16 OCMA Re-borN Dance Interactive_KI6A2766v2_B-W

June 7, 2016

Portfolio Reviewer at LACP Exposure 2016

Filed under: Art, Art Market, Photography — Tags: , , — Doug Stockdale @ 11:40 pm

05-29-16_Susan_Burnstine_photo_book_independent

Susan Burnstine, a Portfolio Reviewer for LACP Exposure 2016

I will be among the 19 Portfolio Reviewers, joining Susan Burnstine (above), Aline Smithson, Julia Dean, Kirk Pederson, Sarah Lee, Chris Davies to name only a few, for the Los Angeles Center of Photography’s (LACP) “Exposure 2016” event being held at the end of July at Santa Monica’s Bergamont Station.

I am recommending that photographers who are interested in feedback on a portfolio that has been edited for potential publication may want to consider me for a review session. I am also recommending that if the photographer/artist has a book dummy in addition to a print portfolio, it would be a great opportunity to get some constructive criticism on that as well. The issue as always for these events is that you only have a 20 minute window to spend with each reviewer, so it really helps to know what exactly you want from this brief exchange.

I wrote about my first portfolio review experience at Palm Springs Photo many, many years ago; but most of the do’s and don’t still hold true: bring your best and focused portfolio (not a jumble of favorites) and have one specific question you would like to have addressed. This is about exposure and networking, not selling and get exhibitions booked, although that has happened for some photographers, just do not expect it. Also bring something to leave behind, even if a business card and get the reviewers contact info and follow up with an email after the review.

Although this is a two day event; Saturday, July 30, 10 am – 5 pm + Sunday, July 31, 10 am – 5 pm, regretfully I will be available only on Sunday, July 31st. So I’m a bit limited for availability. Thus I suggest if you want to have my review, you will probably want to sign up as soon as possible.

For more details on “Exposure 2016”, including on how to sign-up, head over to: here.

The LACP’s “Exposure 2016” is a great opportunity to have your work seen by a diverse group of portfolio reviewers; see all of the bio’s here.

Currently early bird pricing is still available until July 1st, so check it out now ;- )

Exposures 2016 event adress: dnj Gallery, Bergamot Station, 2525 Michigan Avenue, Suite J1, Santa Monica, California, 90404, (United States).

Cheers!

Older Posts »

Blog at WordPress.com.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 144 other followers