Doug Stockdale's Singular Images

February 29, 2008

周常英業

Filed under: Photography, Projects/Series — Doug Stockdale @ 3:32 am

New Roadway Jiashan

For those not reading Mandarin characters, the pinyin title is Zhou Chang Ying Yeh, the Chinese title for my project Open During Construction. The phrase roughly means that the business is open as usual, which provides me with some more ambiguity and room for creative interpretation of where I want to work on this series. I have been back and forth with Alan Wu, who is currently working in Shanghai, to help me get the series title defined. Thanks Alan!

For me, a little more ambiguity is a good thing, as it allows me to mentally think a little more broadly out of the box. I have found that my greatest limitation in my own creativity is the limits that I place on myself. Thus if I chose to work on a series or when I write my introduction (artist statement) that I begin to box myself in.

I started to notice that with this particular series, especially when I have to ask the question: I like this image and I think that it may fit, but based on my series “title”, I am not sure. I realize that I am begining to box myself in too much. Way too much, and that is not a good thing for me.

I think that when I work on a concept, that if I can define that concept and write it down, it does provide me with some stucture and direction. That in itself is an okay thing. It helps provide some continuity and cohesiveness, like a good story, movie or music.  But if it gets me focused too much like a laser light, then I am probably toooo focused. I start to have blinders on as to my options.  I have not allowed myself the wiggle room and opportunity to let the project breath and give me the room to grow. Its just too tight and resembles a straight jacket, and who in the heck wants to wear that?

And this allows me to bring some other images into consideration that I think help create the sturcture of what I want to explore with this series.  and that is nice….

Best regards, Doug

Added Note: From Alan Wu, I received a correction to the Mandarin phrase, as it should read Zhao Chang Ying Ye, and now Zhou Chang Ying Yeh.  But then again, the Chinese Mandarin does not seem to be specific to the last word, going either with Ye or Yeh, so I’m going with the traditional Ye to mean ‘business’.

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