Doug Stockdale's Singular Images

March 9, 2018

Mentor-ship opportunities thru LACP

Filed under: Art Market, Photography, Projects/Series — Tags: , , , — Doug Stockdale @ 10:17 pm

02-28-18 Stockdale during Photo Book Presentation for PADA by Karen Schuenemann

Douglas Stockdale, Palos Verdes Art Center, 2018, photograph by Karen Schuenemann

I am very honored and excited to announce that I am part of the inaugural LACP (Los Angeles Center of Photography) Mentor-ship program that was just formally launched by this LA organization. This builds on my recent LACP experience as a workshop leader for my Introduction to Photo Book Design (next workshop is two weekends next Oct), Portfolio Reviewer, mini-program presenter and discussion panel leader.

LACP is proud to announce our new Mentorship Program. We have hand-selected Master Photographers and Photography Professionals for this program who have the skills to guide you on your particular photographic journey. Through one-on-one meetings over the course of a year or six months, you can develop skills, complete a project, hone a portfolio or book or learn marketing strategies to ultimately pursue your photographic dreams.

This is a an opportunity to work directly with me over the span of up to a year on the development of a photographic project(s) including concept, editing, sequencing, layout and design which is equally applicable towards an effective project, portfolio or a published book.

I am joining a wonderfully diverse mentoring team associated with LACP, including Elizabeth Avedon (NYC), Susan Burnstine, Julia Dean, Crista Dix, Greg Gorman, Aline Smithson, Sara Terry and many more. As might be expected, my expertise is with photographic projects that may eventually lead to developing a photographic book.

As stated by LACP; “Whether you have an idea for a project, a project that is just getting started, or one that is complete, but needs a little help getting it out in the world, our Mentors are there to assist you and to help you realize your goals. The right Mentor can help you get your endeavor off the ground and on it’s way.” amen.

There are provisions for those local to LA and from afar to take advantage of this mentor-ship opportunity thru LACP. As might also be expected the pricing of this program is a bit more attractive to become a member of LACP. Full details of the LACP mentor-ship program are available here.

So if you are intrigued in the possibilities of how I might help you with your photographic project or career; check it out,  or if you want to know more, drop me a line (


March 3, 2018

Photo Book as Art – Artist talk at PADA

02-28-18 Stockdale during Photo Book Presentation for PADA by Karen Schuenemann

Douglas Stockdale’s Photo Book Presentation all photos by Karen Schuenemann

I think that my Photo Book as Art presentation that I had announced earlier was a pretty good success judging by the interaction, questions and follow-on inquires about the various aspects of book design and publishing. This artist talk was for the Photography and Digital Arts (PADA), a group of the Palos Verdes Art Center (PVAC).

I curated a small pop-up exhibition of a diverse selection of international photo books that have been recognized by the contemporary photo book community as having artistic merit. This included Mariela Sancari’s self-published Moises (one of the best photobooks of 2016), Claire Felicie’s self-published Only the Sky Remains Untouched (second place, Photo Independent’s International Photo Book Competition), Ellen Korth’s self-published CHARKOW (winner, Photo Independent’s International Photo Book Competition), Roger Ballen’s Ballenesque and The Theatre of Apparitions, Max Pam’s Ramadan in Yemen, Kate Nolan’s Neither, Andrej Lamut’s Nokturno, Renee Jacobs’s Slow Burn (limited edition version) Tymon Markowski’s self-published Flow, Harvey Benge’s Home Town Dream, Matej Sitar’s self-published America, My Way and Nancy Rexroth’s IOWA. I also shared by Blurb book dummy In Passing and introduced my photobook Middle Ground to illustrate the development of a hands-on book dummy, which I had all three versions of Middle Ground (see blow).

My self-published Guide to Self-Publishing an Indie Photo Book and a copy of LensWork #74, that includes my In Passing portfolio, were included in the raffle for those who attended at the end of my presentation.

Again, I appreciated the great hospitality (yummy snacks and adult beverages) and warm welcome for my artist talk. That I also sold a couple of my books was a nice and unexpected bonus. A great photographic group to consider if you live in the greater South Bay region of Southern California. Thank you PADA!


02-28-18 Stockdale Photo Book Presentation for PADA by Karen Schuenemann

February 25, 2018

Investigate the waste Billions or potential (Nuclear) War?

San Diego Point of Entry

San Diego Port of Entry (Middle Ground) 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale

While thinking that since I have essentially completed my political satire about the #stablegenius‘s “da wall” and ready to get ‘er launched as I posted earlier this week, I find my self distracted by another of the #stablegenius attempts to divert everyone’s attention away from the Russian probe into his shady business and political practices. Regretfully each day brings on a new emerging crisis with our #stablegenius in the WH. The current senseless economic baiting of another #stablegenius whose poverty nation also has nuclear arms and who has a long term irrational resentment towards the United States?

So I need to reconsider; do I need to launch my Middle Ground project about the pending waste of billions of dollars to build a senseless wall in the middle of the desert miles and miles away from any habitation OR instead refocus on finishing my anti-war project Gardening for Ordnance?

I fully understand that either of these photographic projects may not have any effect on a real #stablegenius, but either might have an effect on those spineless enablers who continue to allow all of the senseless crap to happen. Or at least in my wildest hopes. What the heck, if a bunch of emotionally impacted high school kids in Florida can start a real anti-NRA movement, it provides much needed hope that anything can happen!

So what do you think?

Finish my political/social satire (Middle Ground) that might stop spending billions on a senseless wall?

Or shift priories and immediately attempt to finish an anti-war satire (Gardening for Ordnance) that hints at the dire consequences of war?

Thank you.

February 22, 2018

Project launch for Middle Ground


Marker #34 (Middle Ground) 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale

For the next couple of months, maybe more, I will be exclusively using this site as the platform to update my Middle Ground project status and to get this launched. The photography is complete, the project concept is fully developed, the photobook design is getting closer to finalization, and I am getting closer to having the photobook publishing costs and pricing worked out. So it’s time to really focus on the finish line and get Middle Ground published in the next couple of months! Especially while the executive office is still trying to get legislative support for this financial and political folly.

There are some related elements to this project that are still a little on the hinkey side which relates to exhibiting this project since I am primarily a book artist. Sorry to say, exhibitions are usually a secondary consideration until now. I can rationalize this feeble excuse as being the downside of my day job and trying to do the best with my available bandwidth; to do at least one creative thing right. (yeah, and now a new client project is not going to make this any easier!). So I will be writing more about this as the project develops.

I still have the idea in development for a video for this project that would be shown in conjunction with any exhibitions. I thought that would be my new 2017 project, but other than a proof of concept, it is still in the early development phase. I have the artist for the background lined up as well as a local recording studio to bring it together. It’s just about the available time and my ability to focus on this aspect. My bad.

I will still be writing about some photographic stuff, with a concentration on some of the photo technical side of things, but will be posting this information on the SoCal PhotoExchange site, where I am the Associate Editor (and founder sometime in 2009). So I hope you might want to check this out and perhaps follow me there as well. Recently I stated a series of articles about the Zone System, and reviews of the Pentax Spotmeter V, Really Right Stuff ball head, Gitzo Carbon Fibre tripod and the Canon 50mm f/1.4 lens.

For social media (Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram & LinkedIn), I will be using the following hash tags for this project; #MiddleGround, #NoNewWall and #NoWall.

Let me know if you want to be placed on the interest list ( for Middle Ground and if you can help me network for potential exhibitions, I would really, really appreciate that very much!! (expect this to part to be repeated very often!)

So as they like to say in the South; time to get ‘er done!


February 19, 2018

2018 President’s Day reflection

Filed under: Middle Ground, Photography, Projects/Series — Tags: , — Doug Stockdale @ 5:39 pm


Middle Ground, Book Dummy two, February 2018 copyright Douglas Stockdale

while on our ski vacation last week and the drive back over the past two days (yep, road trip from Southern California to Colorado and back again), I had a great opportunity to think about my various photographic projects, especially the current photobook that I have in development: Middle Ground.

Perhaps relevant that today I find myself working on a artist project that is essentially a political satire of the current person who is in America’s highest office and who will probably go down in American history as the greatest political mistake we have ever made. Meanwhile today is a good opportunity to celebrate at least 44 of the American Presidents, especially what a great and real American President we had with our 44th.

They say that at social events there are two taboo subjects are religion and politics, but I believe that if you don’t talk about our political problems that we will find your self heading down the same terrible path as Germany did in the late 1930’s with the Nazi’s. We made a terrible mistake in the US during the last election so time to work on making a much needed course correction in our 2018 mid-term elections later this year.

There is much to work on but for my part I am attempting to point out the political folly of spending billions of dollars on a wall between the US and Mexico. Funding for a stupid campaign pledge while attempting to destroy funding for the arts, Medicare, Medical, Social Security, environment protection and much needed medical services for those who are in need is really, really sad.

I have been in contact with a number of independent photobook publishers to see if they have the bandwidth to take on this book project and the response from one was interesting in that they called Middle Ground a “political protest book”. This is an interesting take on my project as I have been thinking it is a political satire and had not considered it as an artistic protest, a bit more of an activist word. So perhaps Middle Ground is about political protest which in turn does expand the conceptual scope a little more for me.

Photograph of the book dummy #2 (book dummy at scale) above is the top view of my proposed leporello book design. Regretfully for the first quote from a book printer & bindery the costs appear to be very high for this design (production cost  the same as the anticipated selling price is not a good combination). So I will be reaching out to a few more folks over the week for additional production quotes as well as working on some other Leporello design options to get the production costs more in line with what I need.

If you are interested in Middle Ground, drop me a line ( to be put on my waiting list; the more books that I can sell, the larger the book’s production run and the better my cost per book pricing will be!

Thanks in advance to all of those who want to help me get this book out there and stop the chaos and folly.


February 18, 2018

2018 Snow Ski Holiday

Filed under: Photography, Projects/Series — Tags: , , — Doug Stockdale @ 4:26 am


Sandstone Creek, Vail, February 2018 copyright Douglas Stockdale

This past week was a holiday vacation for a bit of skiing in Colorado, which was a ton of fun. We had great skiing conditions as well as some “braille” skiing in almost white-out conditions, which was a bit tough when I choose the wrong trail and we ended up on a black diamond with mogul bumps in 4 inches of fresh powder. That was my bad, in more ways than one. Have done this run before, it is a lot more fun if you can see the mogul contours in advance and choose your fall line.

Nevertheless, there is one small creek that is near our place call Sandstone Creek that I have been photographing for the past 20+ years. So one afternoon near the end of the week after we choose to end the day early due to the near white-out conditions I went over to see how the creek was flowing and what else might be of interest. I thought the flat lighting might help with reducing the shadow contrasts and bright reflections.

The photograph posted above is a good indication what I now find of interest and how my photographic vision has evolved over the years; not exactly a photograph of cold running water. I was intrigued by the way the snow was slowly concealing this fallen branch, the fact there was still some color retained in the fall leaves and that this was almost monochromatic, which provided some metaphoric potential. I could also pre-visualize this in the more abstract black & white version (below) I know was going to drive me crazy as to which version I was going to really like best. Slightly different composition and framing with the black & white as well.

Very happy now with both versions.



January 31, 2018

Super Blue Blood Moon this morning

Filed under: Photography — Tags: , , — Doug Stockdale @ 5:14 pm


Super Blue Blood Moon, January 2018 copyright Douglas Stockdale

So I set the alarm for this morning to see the lunar eclipse of the Blue moon that would create the Blood Moon this morning, then set up the tripod as I expected a longer exposure. A bit too long of an exposure as probably the professional night photographers could have warned me. Even in the relatively short exposure, probably 30 to 45 seconds, with the aperture wide open (f/4.0 for my 24-105mm lens), the moon is still moving too much. I suspect it is moving a bit faster as it nears the horizon that in the mid-sky, nevertheless I do not have a gyro for panning during my exposure, so I have to take my chances.

So what the heck, I was up, so some time for experimental/play with this unique natural occurrence. I did know from past experience that the auto exposure mode of my Canon 5DMk3 would not compensate for the very small moon even in spot meter mode. So my practice is to start the extended auto-exposure, then about 10 seconds in, use my hand to cover the front of the lens to block the available light for about 12 – 15 seconds of what amounts to a 30+ second duration. Alternatively, as in the photo above, I alternate the exposure and lens block in 5 second intervals which creates a series of multiple moons that appear as ghosts versus a weird stretched out of shape moon such as the photo below.

During one of these alternating exposure series I had not anticipated a small plane flying into the frame, which was slightly concealed behind a palm leaf just prior to me making this exposure. So the serendipity of the light tracks toward the blood moon in conjunction with the multiple moon ghosts that are framed by the Southern California palms make a very delightful composition and worth the early morning rise.



January 27, 2018

Late January 2018 photo updates

Filed under: Middle Ground, Path to Somewhere, Photography, Projects/Series — Tags: , — Doug Stockdale @ 7:57 pm


Arroyo Trabuco trail, December* 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale

In addition to my new routine of morning walks during which I venture into the adjacent arroyo, back in the studio I have continued to work on my Middle Ground project. At the moment the Middle Ground project is not going include any black & white images so I did not include any updated images during my seven day black & white challenge this month.

Nevertheless, I continued to edit, tweak and evaluate the Middle Ground images for this project and have started printing these at 16 x 20″ on Photo Rag as part of my final evaluation. Looking ahead at the photobook for this project I have asked for a quote from a public relations person that I frequently interact with in my role as Editor for the The PhotoBook Journal, so I appreciate the quality of work she does. To help her understand this body of work, I have also uploaded to my web site a small selection of images that a part of the final edit. I have also continued to work on the Middle Ground book dummy. I expect to have some updates on that very, very soon.

I have been asked to join a new art mentoring program for an LA art organization and should have some details as this gets sorted out, guessing that this is going to launch sometime next month. Also received a request to provide a photobook presentation next month to an art group in the greater LA area and likewise I hope to get this worked out in the next week or so.

Meanwhile, I have just transferred the ownership of the SoCal PhotoExchange to my Editor, and now publisher, Gerhard Clausing. So that blog is in really good hands. I will continue as Associate Editor and I plan to write a weekly “tech” column for this photo-blog for the next couple of months (just posted a user report on the Gitzo carbon fiber tripod and next will be the Really Right Stuff medium size ball-head) and see how that goes.

I think a good start for the new year. Now if I can only lose a couple more of those pesky pounds that seem to linger; suspect that these are attached with super-glue ;- )

btw, noted that there is a small flock (at least six) of green parrots down in the arroyo this morning; noisy birds!

Please join me on Tumblr: @douglasstockdale & Twitter: @Doug_Stockdale, and of course, Instagram @douglasstockdale

* Limited time print offer: a 7 x 7″ color print is available for 24 hours after this post for a special price of $150 USD plus shipping. This color print size regularly sells for $300 USD. Archival pigment print on Hahnemuhle Photo Rag Matte (305 gsm), paper size is 8-1/2 x 11″, Edition size of 10 and the print will be signed and numbered in pencil. email me: for details.


January 26, 2018

Morning walk to the double arches

Filed under: Path to Somewhere, Photography — Tags: — Doug Stockdale @ 11:23 pm


Tijeras Creek trail, December* 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale

First off, I hope you were not thinking that I was including in my morning walks a visit to McDonald’s, as I have enough troubles with shedding the last few pounds, least I indulge in a quarter-pounder with cheese. Sorry, although I don’t want to offend any Micky-D fans, but for the time being I need to avoid that place like the plague.

So having finished my seven day black & white challenge, back to my normal day time photographic programming.

Visually my challenge for this composition was to simulate the three dimensional space of these progressive arches along this trail. During the walk, the progressive arches were easy to see but then capturing that three dimensional space in a print seemed a bit harder. I hope that the combination of how I tweaked the shadows, both on the ground as well as the foliage, in conjunction with keeping the foreground darker and slightly raising the values of the foliage at the second arch created the necessary visual depth. In this case, I was trying to create this visual effect without masking the second arch and softening the details to simulate a shallow dept of field.

Meanwhile yesterday at the conclusion of my walk I realized that I had worn out my Merrill hiking books. Nevertheless this pair of books has held up for about twenty years, the leather was still relatively waterproof and a decent tread to give me traction on ice and snow. So now I need a new pair for our pending ski trip to Colorado mountains. Any suggestions??

Please join me on Tumblr: @douglasstockdale & Twitter: @Doug_Stockdale, and of course, Instagram @douglasstockdale

* Limited time print offer: a 7 x 7″ black & white print is available for 24 hours after this post for a special price of $150 USD plus shipping. This black & white print size regularly sells for $300 USD. Archival pigment print on Hahnemuhle Photo Rag Matte (305 gsm), paper size is 8-1/2 x 11″, Edition size of 10 and the print will be signed and numbered in pencil. email me: for details.


January 24, 2018

Black & White Challenge: Day six abstraction

Filed under: Path to Somewhere, Photography — Tags: , — Doug Stockdale @ 8:09 pm


Untitled (Arroyo Trabuco Trail) December* 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale

Today I am posting the sixth day of my current Black & White Challenge. This image was created more in line with my experimentation/fun paradigm. First part is the photograph I made on the trail during my walk (hint, the still water was providing too accurate of a reflection of the tree), then some immediate black & white conversion with Snapseed and the final tweaking of the image later in the studio, which included a 180 degree inversion of the image.

For me the resulting image is a combination of surrealism with a dash of reality that might be considered semi-abstract. One of my more ambiguous images for this challenge.  I am also enjoying the darker tonal range of this image, also a bit out of my norm. So now see what I might cook-up for the final challenge image for tomorrow’s post.

Please join me on Tumblr: @douglasstockdale & Twitter: @Doug_Stockdale, and of course, Instagram @douglasstockdale

* Limited time print offer: a 7 x 7″ black & white print is available for 24 hours after this post for a special price of $150 USD plus shipping. This black & white print size regularly sells for $300 USD. Archival pigment print on Hahnemuhle Photo Rag Matte (305 gsm), paper size is 8-1/2 x 11″, Edition size of 10 and the print will be signed and numbered in pencil. email me: for details.



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