Doug Stockdale's Singular Images

December 31, 2017

Best creative wishes for 2018!


Morning walk, Trabuco Canyon, 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale

On the brink of 2018 I think is a nice time to reflect on the achievements (and maybe even some of the screw-ups) of this past year, while looking forward to the opportunities and possibilities of the New Year.

So what do I have a chance to pat myself on the back about for 2017?

A bunch of things are just the continuation of my on-going artists and photographic projects; writing my random thoughts for this blog, providing photographic/artist book reviews for The PhotoBook Journal, portfolio and submission reviews for LensCulture, portfolio reviews for Los Angeles Center for Photography (LACP), curating the photobook submissions & curatorial talks for Photo Independent, and providing mentoring to other photographers/artist on the development of their book/projects. Likewise I continue development of long term photographic/artist projects; Memory Pods, Middle Ground, Instant Nomad and Gardening for Ordinance.

Bluewater Shore; self-published my limited edition artist book  which was launched this spring at Photo Independent. I had been developing this artist book for the past four years, so it was really great to finish this publication, which was recently selected by Elizabeth Avedon as one of her Best Photographic Books for 2017, and made Viory Schellekans Best Photo Books of 2017. (Also a few copies of this edition are still available, so contact me if interested;

Guide to Self-publishing an Indie Artist Book; an unexpected self-published book that I received a commission to complete in time for it’s launch at the Medium Festival of Photography this fall. This book draws heavily upon my Introduction to Photo Book design workshops.

Introduction to Photo Book workshop; In conjunction with Los Angeles Center for Photography (LACP) last spring, I led the first of two workshops this year for LACP. We are already planning the next workshop with LACP for fall of 2018, so watch for more details next year. These workshops have also led to more mentoring for photobook development with individual artist/photographers and organizations.

So what lays ahead for 2018? As the photograph above hopefully implies; an uncertain future on a path that only a few walk, with some potential hills (ups and downs) lurking ahead with the end of the path obscured by the trees. There’s also the thorny cactus lurking just off the trail.  Okay, it’s a bit of a classic metaphor, but I enjoy it all the same.

One goal for 2018 is the (self) publication of Middle Ground this spring (working on the book dummy during the holidays). Continue development of the other photographic projects. In discussions with my Associate Editor, Gerhard Clausing, about a ten-year anniversary photobook for The PhotoBook Journal.

On a personal note, I still need to lose another 5 pounds this year (did lose 10 pounds this fall) and get my blood pressure further down with modifications to my diet (a bit less wine, reducing the amount of salt, more fish, fruits and vegtables) in conjunction with frequently daily walks of a duration that is at least an hour. For the later, I am now venturing more off the beaten path that has led to the start of another photographic project about walking (I have a working title, but more about this in 2018 as I tweak the project’s artist statement). Maybe two walking project since I have been walking both the nature trails and the local ocean beaches, as well the local neighborhoods. I will continue to follow my muse and really interested to see how this all will develop!

So as we prepare for the New Year, I wish you all the very creative best for 2018!



September 2, 2017

Gabriela Cendoya reviews Bluewater Shore


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.


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 (

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!



Artist, Educator and Mentor

July 2, 2017

Bluewater Shore PR photo do-over

Filed under: Bluewater Shore - artist book, Books, Photography — Tags: , — Doug Stockdale @ 3:55 am


Ready for a Holiday (Bluewater Shore) 2017 Douglas Stockdale

Earlier in June I had set up the studio lights to re-photograph the interior of my limited edition artist book Bluewater Shore for some bookstore submissions. Recently looking at the resulting images, one of which is below, I realized that as a result of how I had the lights setup to photograph the book’s interior, I did not really get a great representational image. Then is dawned on me; rather than have the back cover of the book facing the lights, I had it reversed and essentially allowing the book’s cover to cast a shadow on the book’s interior. Duh.

What was I thinking? Okay, so I am relatively new to using studio lights and this pretty dumb lighting set-up was pretty much a rookie mistake. So be it; at least I was not screwing up some commercial assignment in the process. I figure that this is just part of my studio lighting learning curve and hopefully I will not make this mistake again (probably another, but hopefully not this same one again).

I also edited the image on my other computer which has a better color managed monitor to ensure that the resulting images are a better representation of the book. Done.

I will update a few other articles about Bluewater Shore with these new images and then right after July 4th holiday I will start pitching a series of bookstores that sell both photographic as well as artist books that use photographic sourced material.


P.S. I still have copies of this limited edition artist book available and if you are interested, please message me

Bluewater Shore limited edition artist book_page_1_Ready_for_a_Holiday


June 21, 2017

LACP 4th Annual Members juried exhibition acceptance

Filed under: Memory pods, Projects/Series — Tags: — Doug Stockdale @ 7:52 pm


Fog (Memory Pods project) copyright 2014 Douglas Stockdale

I am delighted to announce that another of my Memory Pod project photographs has been juried into an exhibition, which in this case is the 4th Annual Members Exhibition for LACP (Los Angeles Center of Photography). The juror is Paula Tognarelli of the Griffin Museum of Photography (Winchester, MA). While the earlier exhibition of Loss was awarded an honorable mention, this time I am very honored to be juried in which I believe is another validation of this project.

In checking earlier posts, it appears that I have not published this image before. All of my photographs for this conceptual project are potential metaphors for the condition of individuals who are living with the loss of memory. For this image, Fog, I am investigating profound memory loss; all traces of memory are gone and the individual is existing in a perpetual memory fog. The stooped, disheveled and bent-over appearance is also an indication that these individual frequently resemble in this state and if they could communicate they would talk of serve depression, anxiety and anger. This is also nearing the end of the individuals life as other acute issues related to their memory loss are occurring.

Regretfully not an up-lifting reason for me to develop this image, but part of my desire to investigate the effects of dementia and Alzheimer’s upon those who are unfortunate to suffer this dreadful disease. Also why we need to invest in research to eliminate it. We will all come to our end on day, but some paths are more wicked than others.

Best regards, Doug




June 19, 2017

Fathers Day & remembering Dad

Filed under: Photography — Tags: , , — Doug Stockdale @ 4:42 pm


Two rods, Newport Beach, June 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale

This past weekend was Father’s Day, a time to celebrate Dads and for some of us, to remember their Dad’s who are no longer with us. In my case it was the later as my Dad had passed almost thirty years ago. Yesterday in honor of Father’s Day I posted the above photo that I had taken a earlier on the Newport Beach pier as part of my experiment/play process. At the time that I took the photo and then subsequently tweaked it I had not really given much thought to the metaphoric potential. Until I posted it on Instagram and starting spent a little more time thinking about this image.

So what I realized is that these two fishing rods could represent the current state of me and my dad. Both of us like to fish, he much more than I every will, with the fishing rod on the right going out of focus and appearing to become fainter and harder to make out the details. Which I realized is part of my memory process over the last thirty years I have lost many details about our time spent together. Although these details and experiences are becoming harder to recall he still is a presence however faint he has become. Which was why this weekend this photograph became important to me.

Sometimes I do not recognize the serendipity of my creative works until later, but for me better late than never.

I hope you all had a wonderful time with your father’s and dad’s this weekend and if they are still around cherish the time you still have together.


April 15, 2017

Bluewater Shore – limited edition artist book

Bluewater Shore limited edition artist book

Bluewater Shore with clear slip cover

Bluewater Shore (book with poly slip-cover) Copyright 2017 Douglas Stockdale

Bluewater Shore is a semi-fictional visual narrative about a young woman’s holiday, an exciting unescorted trip to the shore with friends, which is set in the late 1940’s and investigates a new sense of independence for women that occurred during and following World War II as well as American culture, family, and memory. The limited edition artist book was developed from repurposed vernacular photographs from the artist’s family archive and the concept was partly inspired by Kodak and Ansco promotional booklets that were available with dime/drug stores film processing in the 1950’s and into the 1960’s.

Concept, development & design: Douglas Stockdale copyright 2017

Flip-book, stiff covers, prong binding, hand-inscribed cover, hand-inscribed poly slip case, 32 pages, 16 black & white photographs, size: 7 ½” x 6” (190 mm x 155 mm)

Self-published artist book, limited edition of 99 + 5 A/P; price $47.00 USD (44 €, 37.5 £, 5,230 ¥,)

Printing: Fultone© digital lithography by Dual Graphics, (Brea, CA), hand-bound by the artist.

Additional photographs: (Bluewater Shore – artist book)

Bluewater Shore can be purchased from Arcana: Books on the Arts (Culver City), Photo Book International or contact me directly (

Official book launch: Photo Independent, Los Angeles, CA April 21- 23, 2017








April 7, 2017

Pre-order Bluewater Shore

Bluewater Shore with clear slip cover

Bluewater Shore (cover, with clear slip-case) 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale

It is now time to pre-order a copy of Bluewater Shore prior to the formal book launch at Photo Independent (Los Angles, April 21-23, 2017) for a special pre-launch price of $40.00 USD (includes shipping and handling within the USA) (Note: this pre-launch price has now ended). The book price will increase to $47.00 at Photo Independent. This is my version of a crowd-funding for this book project!

Introduction: A semi-fictional visual narrative about a young woman’s holiday, an exciting unescorted trip to the shore with friends which is set in the late 1940’s and investigates a new sense of independence for women that occurred during and following World War II. The limited edition book was developed from repurposed vernacular photographs that are in my family archive and the concept was partly inspired by Kodak and Ansco promotional booklets that were available with dime/drug stores film processing in the 1950’s and into the 1960’s.

A book that investigates American culture, time, memory and nostalgia. This is a sequel to Pine Lake, my 2013 artist book which was recognized by Elizabeth Avedon as one of her Best Photographic Books for 2014.

Concept, development & design: Douglas Stockdale copyright 2017

Flip-book, stiff covers, prong binding, hand-inscribed cover, hand-inscribed poly slip case, 32 pages, 16 black & white photographs, size: 7 ½” x 6” (190 mm x 155 mm)

Self-published artist book, limited edition of 99 + 5 A/P; price $47.00 USD (44 €, 37.5 £, 5,230 ¥,)

Fultone© digital lithography printed by Dual Graphics, Brea, CA (USA)

Additional photographs: (Bluewater Shore – artist book)

I will need you to email me and let me know that the check is in the mail (or we can do a PayPal invoice for credit cards) for the number of copies you want;

I think you will find this to be a very charming story about what might have happened with this band of brave, young, adventuresome women.


Note: First my sincere thanks to all of you who pre-ordered Bluewater Shore, your enthusiastic response was wonderful is very much appreciated! 25% of the edition was gone in two weeks and this allowed me to prepare for the book’s launch at Photo Independent on April 21st. Thank you!

Bluewater Shore limited edition artist book

Bluewater Shore limited edition artist book_page1



April 5, 2017

Bluewater Shore – Next steps to self-publish


Show-offs! (Bluewater Shore) 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale

Since my last update on the development of my limited edition photobook Bluewater Shore, I continue to be very busy with getting the printing completed at Dual Graphics, starting the pre-publication selling, arranging for books reviews and making pitches to some select book shops to stock and sell it.

First, printing the book at Dual Graphics (Brea, CA); we are currently tweaking the gray tones for the Fultone printing of the interior pages. Fultone printing was developed by David Gardner to improve on the duotone printing then available in the mid-1980’s, but his efforts duly impressed Ansel Adams & John Sexton that Fultone printing by Dual Graphics (at that time called Gardner Lithographic) was the best black and white book printing in the US and where they have their books printed. Since then a whole series of black and white photographers have been going to Dual Graphics to use their Fultone printing process. We are also fine tuning the color and font of the book’s exterior. I may be at Dual Graphics later this week on-press for the actually book printing. I am looking forward to that!

Since I just set my selling price after a stop at ARTBOOKS in LA last weekend to check out the competitive landscape of similar book prices, I am now able to start my campaign to pitch booksellers to stock Bluewater Shore (just received my first confirmation) in conjunction with pre-publication discount and a standard post Photo Independent book sellers discount.

Likewise in conjunction with my budding newsletter process, I am now starting to reach out to my family, friends and contacts to offer a pre-launch discounted price for the book (see below for details). This is essentially a mini-kickstarter program to pre-sell as many of the books as I can to fund my launch at Photo Independent (and pay for the final publication costs).

I have been in touch with (“pitching”) a couple of magazine and on-line zine publications about featuring Bluewater Shore. It can be a little longer process to get accepted and then published by the Editorial teams, so I needed to start that as soon as possible. I have already anticipated that for some magazines that they will only feature “original” photographic work, so my artist book which uses re-purposed vernacular photographs is a bit of an artistic stretch for them (yep, already have my first rejection slip!)

At the moment, I am anticipating that I will have the printing complete by mid-April and then I need to complete the prong binding and hand inscribe the book, book covers and the outer shell. Stay tuned!

One serendipitous outcome of this project; since I am using my family archive to draw on for the content and sadly since my parents (and their brothers and sisters) have passed, I do not know all of the identifies of those in the photographs. Photo above is my dad who plays a cameo role in the book, but then my cousin Jack just emailed me to tell me that he’s the young kid in the foreground. I suspected it might have been him, but I did not know for sure. So now I do. How cool is that?!

Regarding the above photograph, what interested me, besides the subjects, was the vernacular nature of this photograph. The the framing was off-kilter, a trade mark of an amateur photograph, and the spontaneity of the subjects. A classic candid vacation photo which I felt was ideally suited for this summer holiday narrative.

Btw, if you have become interested in purchasing Bluewater Shore, I do have a pre-publication sale going on right now (sort of a personal Kickstarter program), which is $40.00 USD (includes shipping and handling within the USA). The price increases to $47.00 USD on April 21st at Photo Independent (Los Angles). So I can honestly say that this is a limited time offer! (contact me off-line:


March 20, 2017

Bluewater Shore – Final Development in progress!


Ready for a Holiday (Bluewater Shore, artist book, self-published, 2017) copyright Douglas Stockdale

Very exciting news; last week I have a sponsor for my limited edition artist book Bluewater Shore!

For the past six days I have radically shifted gears to finalize the development of my project: book & cover design (same as Pine Lake), tweaked a couple of the images, created a set of production proofs and pre-production high resolution files, created a set of web ready images and just posted these on my web site, fine tuned my introduction (below) and put together a little press release flyer that provides an overview of this artist book which I was able to start handing out at the LACP open house this last Saturday. Yep, I’ve been a busy guy ;- )

Bluewater Shore Introduction:  A semi-fictional story about an American rite of summer. This is a visual narrative about a women’s holiday, an exciting trip to the shore with friends. This is set in the late 1940’s and investigates a new sense of independence for women that occurred during and following World War II.

The good news is that I have been mulling over this book project for the past couple of years after self-publishing Pine Lake. Sort of had this on a slow-simmer; so the concept and what I want to accomplish was pretty well thought-out, thus when I received the go-ahead, I had the planning complete so I just needed to update all of the files and book dummy.

At the moment I looking at a book launch for Bluewater Shore at Photo Independent (April 21-23, 2017) at which I already have a table reserved. Also starting an interest list, so let me know ( if this project might be one you would like to support and purchase one of the 99 limited edition copies. Very close to setting the final price, so that will be announced shortly.



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