Doug Stockdale's Singular Images

September 8, 2017

Starting a Book-dummy – Book Commission

Filed under: Art Market, Photography, Projects/Series — Tags: , , — Doug Stockdale @ 9:39 pm

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Commission dummy, trim size , copyright 2017 Douglas Stockdale

When developing a photo/artist book I am a very firm believer in the creation of a book-dummy to be able to pre-visualize the final published book. It is very hard to look at a monitor or screen to obtain how a potential book feels as an object. How the book will open, how the papers will turn, the texture of the paper and the weight of the book as it lays in your hands and at some point in this development, how the combination of ink, paper and image will appear. Creating a book-dummy will just take me that much closer to the final printed book.

For the new book commission we needed to come to an agreement as to the potential trim size as this will impact the layout of the text and photographs. Fortunately there were two basic sizes already predefined; 9-3/4″ x 7″ and 12″ x 9-3/4″ in either a horizontal or vertical format. We quickly agreed for this book project to work with a horizontal 9-3/4″ (W) x 7″ (H) format design. Taking this one big variable out of the rest of the book development equations (decisions) is really, really nice.

As a result of this format decision I was able to very quickly cut down some paper to the right trim size versus my first version yesterday.  This stage of book development is still very rough so I used scissors and not the paper cutter (saved a little time as my two paper-cutters are stored elsewhere) to trim the paper down. Still not sure how many pages just yet thus cut up a few sheets to start framing the layout. At this stage I am also using some big paper-clips to hold the mess of pages together. The binding of the book-dummy can become a lot more formal a little later in the book development process.

The pre-visualization is in process and I am in turn starting to become more focused.

Other self-serving stuff that I need to keep repeating (yuk, yuk):

Getting things ready for the Introduction to Photo Book Design workshop at LACP in a few weeks, which starts on October 1st.

I still have a few copies of the Bluewater Shore edition that are available (and another book review for Bluewater Shore that will be posted soon). So email me (doug@douglasstockdale.com).

Cheers!

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September 7, 2017

Book Commission

Filed under: Photography, Projects/Series, Uncategorized — Tags: , , — Doug Stockdale @ 5:25 pm

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Copyright 2017 Douglas Stockdale

I am very happy to announce that I just received a book commission from a company that I have been mentoring on photobooks. This is going to be a bit of whirl wind affair in that the book has to be developed, printed and launched by the end of October.

Although this is going to be a how-to book, it will pave the way for a photobook that I have currently in development.

Since this project needs to develop quickly, I will provide frequent updates here for those who want to follow along. I will need to figure out how many pages for the intended content and what the design might be. I am currently working out with the sponsor as to what we want to accomplish, so first step is to create a blank dummy while off-line getting confirmation of the requirements.

This much I know for sure, it will involve a lot of writing by me. As if September was not already looking busy, such as getting things ready for the Introduction to Photo Book Design workshop at the beginning of October along with some other stuff about to be announced.

And of course I still have a few copies of the Bluewater Shore edition that are available (and another book review that will be posted soon). So email me (doug@douglasstockdale.com) before these are gone!

Cheers!

September 5, 2017

Introduction to Photo Book Design – Fall workshop – LACP

Filed under: Art Market, Photography, Projects/Series, Workshops — Tags: , — Doug Stockdale @ 10:36 pm

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Introduction to Photo Book Design – This Fall (October 1 and 8th), I will be repeating my popular two-day workshop in conjunction with the Los Angeles Center for Photograph (LACP). This workshop focuses on the fundamental development of a book object. The two-day goal of the workshop is for each person to leave with a first rough draft of their book dummy of their personal photographic project. I will provide both creative and practical book design options and project critiques to help those attending to move their book publication forward.

After a morning of studying limited edition artists’ books, trade books and zines, the remainder of the first morning will be spent understanding students’ publishing objectives and how that translates to a book object such as editing and sequencing a project for a book. Subsequently I will include discussions on the elements of book design and the purpose of a book-dummy, concluding with a hands-on fabrication of a saddle-stitch dummy book/zine.

The second session delves further into the book dummy development and includes discussions about the business elements of (self) publishing a book, photo book production and making a publisher submission. The remainder of the day students will continue working on the development of their dummy book as a collaborative project.

I hope you can join me as these are intense, yet fun, workshops.

The workshops are being held at the LACP facilities: 1515 Wilcox Ave, Los Angeles, CA

Let me know if you have any questions,

Cheers!

10 years of photo-blogging

Filed under: Art Market, Photography, Projects/Series — Tags: , — Doug Stockdale @ 12:49 am

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Frosty Morning, LaHutte, Switzerland, copyright 2005-2017 Douglas Stockdale

Okay, it’s actually been a little over ten years ago that I started photo-blogging, which was in April 2007, with this being my first post. I thought it might be charming to revisit the same Swiss winter landscape, this time in color. More about this photo in just a moment.

First, a big thank you! for those who have followed me and my photographic posts over the many years.

Since this was Labor day, I thought it would be a great occasion to update this blog. While making the changes I noticed the side panel and that I had started photo-blogging over 10 years ago. Opps! A bit late in this important shout-out, but photo-blogging is not what it once was. As is Facebook, Instagram and a few other versions of social media deemed important to an artist career.

So some quick stats; in the past 10 years I have made over 1,000 posts (actually 1,080) and this blog has been viewed over 130,500 times. In comparison my book review blog, The PhotoBook Journal, has over a million views which is just approaching 10 years.

I will admit that a few years back in 2013 I came to closing down this site and during that time I was not adding many posts, but nevertheless I stayed the course. I suspect that I will continue to post on this blog as it is a defacto web site that probably gets seen as often than my web site. It is also interesting how some really old posts and related photographs from Singular Images still comes up in a lot of Google searches.

Frosty Morning was photographed early in my digital conversion period as I was still hauling around my Hasselblad film equipment, nevertheless I was at that time start to poke digital capture and explore it’s possibilities. The camera I used for this photograph was a 4 Mpeg Canon G2, a nice little rangefinder that I affectionately called my faux-Leica. I believe that I also had a twins-lens 6×6″ with me on this trip as well with 120 color film and in looking back, the photographs I enjoyed all came from the little Canon G2. Where the G2 was suppose to be the back-up, it quickly became the primary.

I had been using Photoshop since 1991 when it first came out and another couple of other digital photographic software programs before that. So I was not a stranger to digital. At the time of this photograph (2005) I was more interested in the software and digital printing capabilities and only starting to determine if digital (camera) capture might be a worthwhile alternative to analog film.

The occasion for this photograph was during an assignment that I was working at a site bit further up this Swiss valley in La Chaux-de-Fonds. I would fly into Zurich, catch the express train to Biel and then switch to the local red train to La Chaux-de-Fonds which would slowly meander through the valley and stop at every small station in between. You could jump off the train at one of these small villages, walk about and then catch the next train heading the same way one hour later. This is the photograph I made on one of these stops in the winter of 2005. I still enjoy this photograph for the quite winter composition as well as the memories it brings back.

Cheers!

 

September 2, 2017

Gabriela Cendoya reviews Bluewater Shore

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Review 2017 copyright Gabreiela Cendoya, screen shot, Bluewater Shore copyright 2017 Douglas Stockdale

Yesterday I woke to find that Gabriela Cendoya, a very well known photobook reviewer in Spain, has just published a review of Bluewater Shore on her blog GabrielaCendoya. Although she will on occasion provide a book review in English, the Bluewater Shore review is provided in Spanish. If your Spanish is a bit rusty, the review easily converts with the use of Google translate.

So I have taken the liberty to provide a few excerpts, but do not let that hinder you from reading the review in it’s entirety!

Las fotografías de Bluewater Shore, en blanco y negro, de finales de los años 40, tienen el sabor de una cierta despreocupación (insouciance, dirían los franceses), pero sobre todo de una libertad feliz. (The photographs of Bluewater Shore, in black and white, of the late 40’s, have the flavor of a certain disregard (insouciance, the French would say), but above all a happy freedom.)

Como en la obra de Shakespeare, el verano es propicio a los encuentros mas diversos. (As in the work of Shakespeare, summer is conducive to the most diverse encounters)

Mas que de memoria familiar, Douglas nos habla de libertad y emancipación de las mujeres, en un relato abierto en el que podemos intuir muchas aventuras. (Rather than family memory, Douglas speaks of freedom and emancipation of women, in an open story in which we can intuit many adventures.)

Bluewater Shore, en su formato encantador, su nostalgicas fotos envejecidas, es un perfecto acompanante al melancolico final del verano, ese momento sonado de gozo y libertad.
(Bluewater Shore, in its charming format, its nostalgic old photos, is a perfect companion to the melancholic final of the summer that dreamed moment of joy and freedom.)

Thanks to Gabriela for a wonderful and insightful reading of Bluewater Shore. I really enjoy the fact that this artist book has a broad and universal appeal and that it has the capability to connect with readers regardless of their background and culture.

Cheers!

This is where I state that although Bluewater Shore is selling at a very nice pace that there are still some limited edition copies still available. So message me (doug@douglasstockdale.com).

August 29, 2017

Ciociaria in FineBooks & Collections magazine

Filed under: Ciociaria, Projects/Series — Tags: , — Doug Stockdale @ 9:34 pm

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Copyright 2017 by Journalistic, Inc., Chapel Hill, NC

Through serendipity I recently came to know of and receive a review copy of FineBooks & Collections, a quarterly published by Journalistic, Inc. out of their Chapel Hill, NC offices. As you might imagine the magazine reports on all things related to “Fine” Books, Manuscripts, and other published empheria that might end up in a collection.

The events that led to my obtaining a review copy of FineBooks was a survey article being prepared about photobooks, titled Photography in Motion, Collecting Photobooks is a way of Collecting Change by Andrea Volpe. One of the subjects that Volpe discussed was Yale’s Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library acquisition/donation of the Indie Photobook Library develop by Larissa Leclair (we reported on this earlier). To illustrate the indie type of phtotobooks in Leclair’s collection, FineBooks wanted to use the cover of my photobook Ciociaria, published by Edizioni Punctum that was included in the Yale acquisition.

This is not a book review, but it places my photobook alongside some wonderful photographic company; Alvin Langdon Coburn, Lewis Hine, Danny Lyons, Richard Avedon and Gary Winogrand. Nevertheless, it is very nice to become a poster child for Indie photobooks!

Other articles in this magazine of note for photographers and book makers: Not the End for Endpapers, a short interview of Daile Kaplan who is the head of photography at the Swann Auction Galleries and her Pop Photographica collection, a review of a Henry Thoreau exhibition that includes an interesting daguerreotype of him and her In View column (The Sum of its Parts) by Volpe.

Cheers!

FineBooks_and_Collections_Autumn_2017_cover

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August 20, 2017

When you know your in trouble

Filed under: Photography — Tags: — Doug Stockdale @ 10:39 pm

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South Coast Repertory (SCR) cast photo, Into the Woods, 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale

A couple of days ago SCR had a “family day” free performance for the Young Players version of the play Into the Woods which fortunately Ella was cast as one of the “evil” step-sisters. So all the cast in costume were available for all of the parents and family to take group and individual members photographs. The “professional” photos were taken the previous day (I was not invited for that event, wonder why?).

Thus while the cast was being arranged on stage, I saw what I thought was a unique advantage point from the side of the stage to photograph Ella. From my experience as the event photographer for OCMA, I thought that I was being really carefully not to get into anybody else’s line of sight for their photographs. What I had not planned on is that enough of this young cast know who I am and when I started firing off a few quick frames, many of them turned to look at me. Not at the audience. And certainty NOT facing the Director of the play who was located on the opposite side. Opps!

Yes, I was a Bigly distraction and I quickly heard about it from the play’s Director as I was asked to move away and join the rest of the audience. Sigh.

But I had already got my shot (above)! So below a few of the formal photographs of the cast, as a group and in character.

Btw, a really, really well done performance by this young cast! A real pleasure to watch and enjoy.

Cheers!

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August 18, 2017

Books at Arcana: Books on the Arts

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Bluewater Shore, limited edition artist book (at Arcana), copyright 2017 Douglas Stockdale

Yesterday I had an opportunity to meet with Lee Kaplan at his bookstore, Arcana: Books on the Arts, which is located in Culver City (CA) and present my three books; Bluewater Shore, Pine Lake and Ciociaria.

I am now very happy to announce that a quantity of all three of these books were acquired and all are now available for sale at the Arcana bookstore! Very nice!

We had a really great discussion about photobooks, photographers, book bloggers, publishers and other book industry stuff. It was pretty diverse and free ranging discussion as one subject seemed to quickly lead into another.

I also had an opportunity to provide a quick show-n-tell about my book dummy for Middle Ground and discuss whether which is better to call the book design; leporello, concertina, or accordion fold. Kaplan defaults to leporello as probably the description that aligns best with bibliophiles, so I might need to adjust my photobook definitions and defer to the Middle Ground book as being a leporello design. Nice.

So it is now very nice that my books can be acquired locally in SoCal at this unique and impressive book store. I suspect that Kaplan will soon list these books at his various internet book venues.

Yes another very nice day.

Cheers!

August 13, 2017

Bluewater Shore – scaling up larger prints

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Big Raft, Bluewater Shore, 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale

Recently I have been evaluating the enlargement of photographic images from Bluewater Shore beyond the 15 x 15″ prints that I can make on my Epson 4800 printer. The idea was three-fold; what did this image look like in a larger size (kinda of obvious), if a larger print might be part of my justification to acquire a larger printer (if so, what size; 24″ wide or 44″ wide) and last, how might this image look on a luster paper versus a matte surface?

Marc, one of my friends from the local Photographers Exchange group, has an Epson Pro 9900 (44″ wide) and was willing to make a 22 x 22″ print of Big Raft (Bluewater Shore, above) for me on Epson Premium Baryta paper. It turns out I was also able to evaluate his use of an I-Mac work station versus my current PC equipment (a topic of another day).

The easy question was that a 22 x 22″ print is very impressive. The hard part has always been where to put a much larger printer (with stand) in my cramped second story studio. The 24″ wide printer would be problematic, but even more so with a 44″ wide. Marc has to use a part of his living room for his Epson Pro 9900 which is not going to fly with our family. So for the short term I will need to have others print larger prints when I need these.

The Epson Premium Baryta paper is nice and with it’s slightly warm white’s seems to works very well with the Big Raft image. We also printed a smaller 9-1/2 x 9-1/2″ print on the Epson Premium Luster 260 paper which has more sheen/gloss than the Baryta. The Baryta is similar to the old Kodabromide F enlarging paper’s surface which is more like a soft gloss. Nevertheless, both of these papers show all of the defects in my photographs to a greater degree than the matte paper (Hahnemuhle Photo Rag).

The “artistic” issue is the larger print. All of the small image defects that were evident in the original photograph that I had re-photographed are now very evident with some becoming visually distracting. For the smaller size images in the book (5 x 5″), these defects add to the charm and support the concept that these are found photographs. When the images are enlarged to 15 x 15″ on the matte paper, these defects still appear okay, but in the larger size, the defects are now larger and more visible and this appears further magnified by the luster type papers which does not hide anything.

I know part of my issue, as an old-school analog photographer in the west coast tradition, prints were not to have any defects and if found after the printing; spot them out! A very modern, but not a very contemporary, way of evaluating the print quality. Old photographs can/should appear old, but how “old”?

I am now pretty sure where this is going; I will add another Photoshop layer to selective spot/tweak the defects in the image that seem to bother me most and then print this again for a comparison to determine how the change appears. I had planned to bring the 22 x 22″ print with me to a potential gallery meeting but this will now need to be planned for the late Fall sometime.

Cheers

 

August 9, 2017

Bluewater Shore at Photobook International bookstore

Filed under: Bluewater Shore - artist book, Photography, Projects/Series — Tags: , , — Doug Stockdale @ 4:48 pm

Bluewater Shore limited edition artist book

Bluewater Shore, limited edition artist book, copyright 2017 Douglas Stockdale

Another of my projects this summer has been getting Bluewater Shore into bookstores here in the U.S. as well as in Europe. As is discussed at length in the Indie Photobook Publishing Guide that I posted yesterday, once your book is self-published, there can be an almost equal amount of work to sell it.

Thus I am very excited to announce that Bluewater Shore is now available on-line at the virtual Photobook International bookstore, here. Photobook International is located here in Southern California and is associated with Photo Independent, so my submission was a follow up to my book launch at Photo Independent earlier this year. Very nice, and I of course recommend you check it out (and maybe even buy a copy??)

Meanwhile I will continue making some book submissions to other photobook stores here in the U.S. and Europe. Perhaps similar to making submissions for galleries and exhibitions; I need to determine if there might be good chemistry between me, my books and the bookstores owner and their sales market. I can testify that for a self-published artist, this whole process takes an amazing amount of diligence.

In a related article in this month’s PDNews (August 2017), two self-published photographs discuss how they they are continuing to try to sell the photobooks that they released in 2015. Thus the dilemma of juggling my time to sell what I have published with current work that I intend to publish.  It’s all good & just part of having an artist life!

Cheers!

Doug

Artist, Educator and Mentor

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