Singular Images

February 27, 2019

Middle Ground – San Diego site morphing

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I-5 Southbound, San Diego, February 2019 copyright 2019 Douglas Stockdale

First, this is not meant to be an inspiring photograph as it’s a cell phone drive-by grab shot. Essentially a quick visual note about the evolving demolition of the I-5 middle plant divider as this freeway winds down along the Pacific Ocean coast in San Diego county.

The backstory is that this interesting freeway divider provided an unwilling subject for my artist project Middle Ground that led to my artist book of the same name. It is a wall of a different name located near the San Diego-Mexican border. My project’s intent was to look at this particular urban landscape to investigate a darker metaphoric (and political) condition. Somebody’s medieval bigly wall.

In probably six months all remnants of this vegetative, some places stunningly beautiful, plant barrier will be reduced to  bare dirt and then a series of concrete barriers will rise in its place. The character of this unique urban San Diego landscape will soon morph in to a boring sameness that extends perhaps the entire length of the I-5 freeway, from the Canadian border to Mexico.

I had not driven down this section of the I-5 into San Diego for probably five months, maybe more, so I was taken back yesterday with the new K-rails adjacent to the road way edge and the long patches of the endless string of bushes being hacked down. Maybe even shocked. The use of a decorative plant barrier to create a visual separation along this section of the I-5 freeway goes back to as far as I can remember.

Which also means that my Middle Ground project will become in short order a historical documentary of what once was in San Diego. I am pretty certain that no one else has photographed this middle section of the I-5 as it meanders through this norther section of San Diego county with as much diligence. Which was not my intent as I was unaware of these pending landscape changes to help widen the freeway to improve traffic conditions.

Change. In this case, a visually ugly change.

Best regards, Doug

Note; opps, published this without resizing the image; so a do-over for the photo above.

Douglas_Stockdale_Middle_Ground_cover

May 17, 2018

Middle Ground – Trial Proofs now available

Filed under: Art, Art Market, Middle Ground, Photography, Projects/Series — Tags: , , , — Douglas Stockdale @ 12:23 am

Marker 34

Marker #34, Middle Ground/En Medio Tierra T/P (1/1) 16 x 20″/17 x 22″ 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale

I currently have 22 unique prints now available for sale at my gallery, Fabrik Projects, in Los Angeles. While working on the final Edition for the Middle Ground/En Medio Tierra project I printed a series of these photographs on Hahnemuhle Photo Rag, a heavy 308gms weight 100% cotton archival paper at 16 x 20″ (on 17 x 22″ paper) to visually test this project. The Photo Rag has a matte finish in which the colors have a subtle rich appearance and on this archival paper and look really, really nice.

When I printed the 40 x 50″ image on a semi-gloss paper, I found that there were some subtle changes in the appearance that warranted further investigation for this project. As a result of a long series of paper testing, I have decided to print the entire Middle Ground/En Medio Tierra edition on a glossy paper, selecting the Hahnemuhle Photo Rag Pearl, also a 100% cotton archival medium that is an equally heavy 320gms weight. To complete this evaluation required me to change my Epson printer from the matte black to the photo-black pigment ink required for glossy papers. And I do not plan to go back to the matte black at any time soon.

As a result, all of the earlier test prints on the Hahnemuhle Photo Rag are now consider Trial Proofs (T/P), not Artist Proofs, due to the switch in cotton medium for the final edition.

Thus this creates an opportunity for you to acquire some very unique and beautifully printed T/P prints that are in an edition of One (1/1). The photograph above as well as below are a partial listing of the prints that are available for only for a limited time, because when that print is sold, it’s gone!

If you are intrigued and would like to know more please contact Fabrik Projects for more information: (p) (310) 730-6074 or email: gallery@fabrikprojects.com.

Nevertheless, if you would like to obtain a limited edition print (sizes available are 16 x 20″, 24 x 30″, 30 x 40″ and 40 x 50″), Kasey and the gallery team would love the opportunity to discuss these options as well. just saying…

Cheers!

Doug

San Diego Point of Entry

San Diego Port of Entry

Coastal Point of Entry

Coast Point of Entry

Desert Edge

Desert Edge

Alternative Crossing

Alternative Crossing

Resistance

Tangled Access/Resistance

Rest Stop

Rest Stop

Camouflage

Camouflage

Access Point

Access Point

Marker 42

Marker #42

Observation Post

Observation Post

May 13, 2018

Artist Reception & book launch last night

Filed under: Art, Middle Ground, Photography, Projects/Series — Tags: , , — Douglas Stockdale @ 10:07 pm

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Fabrik Projects, Culver City May 2018 Douglas Stockdale

Last night was a wonderful evening celebrating the opening of my Middle Ground/En Medio Tierra exhibition at Fabrik Projects along with my family, friends and some new acquaintances. This artist reception was shared with Marilyn Sanders who has the other side of the gallery’s walls with her exquisite photographic study of plants and flowers.

Before the reception some family and friends met at WildCraft, a nuvo-Italian restaurant located in Culver City. Very nice and recommended if you are in the area, which is part of the culinary district of Culver City. Oh yes, the garlic knots appetizer was very yummy, but required some breath mints before heading to the reception.

This was also the formal book launch for my self-published artist book, Middle Ground/En Medio Tierra, as well as the first formal announcement of a limited edition Middle Ground/En Medio Tierra book + print box set being published by Fabrik Press. The box set will feature a unique photograph that is not included in the boo in an edition of 25 plus A/P. More about the limited edition box set shortly, since the boxes coming in from the East Coast were delayed. Thus an announcement but no display sample, nevertheless it created immediate interest. In addition to the display copy of Middle Ground/En Medio Tierra, there was also a display copy of Bluewater Shore, my artist book that I self-published last year. All of these art books and limited edition box set are available from the gallery.

It was really nice to have my family attend, although I am not sure just what Ella and Zach thought of this exhibition. Also enjoyed discussions with Marc Plouffe, Bill Edwards, and Scott Mathews from the PhotoExchange, Paul and Theresa Mounce from our Medtronic days, Pete and Kim Brosnan, close friends from Valencia, and a bunch of local artists/photographers, many who are members of LACP, including Debe Arlook, Martin Cox, Sara Jane Boyers, Sarah Lee, and many others. It was a really nice event hosted by the Fabrik Projects team of Chris Davies and Kasey Taylor.

What I found extremely interesting were the questions and discussions that my sustaining pop-up exhibit created and I understand that an artist talk was requested by a bunch of those attending. So more details shortly about this event that will be scheduled in the next couple of weeks.

PS, I am still waiting for some friends to send me some images from the reception as I was very happily spending a lot of time talking with everyone. Someone remarked that this glow might also be linked to the very nice Old Fashion that I found earlier at WildCraft. Maybe ;- )

Cheers!!

May 10, 2018

Artist book making: now fully engaged!

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Books in Boxes, Middle Ground/En Medio Tierra 2018 Douglas Stockdale

After meeting with the Dual Graphs pre-press team to provide the final tweaks and approval of the art work, the job went to the press. I also did a quick assembly of the hard copy prints to create a trial book dummy just to really, really sure that everything was going to plan.

Well my book not only has gone to press, I also picked up the various boxes of sheets and covers to start my self-publishing book production! Earlier this week I drove up to Dual Graphics in Brea to pick up my printed book parts that I would be using to hand make my limited edition artist book Middle Ground/En Medio Tierra. I was taken back a bit when the guy at will-call pointed at a pallet of boxes and stated that it was my print job. Fortunately it was a small pallet and I was able to load all of the boxes into my SUV.

I then laid out the 11 boxes of the leporello book parts along with two versions of the cover in sequence in the garage. wow.  Then after a quick inspection of the printed sheets, I brought these into the house and set up my book “production line” in the dining and living room. With a book interior that stretches out over 21 feet, I needed all of that space for this book binding effort.

It is taking a little while to hand glue each of the leporello connections for each book. So this might turn out to be my month of May project. Yesterday, I took two of the first books up to Fabrik Projects in order that they have a finished book to show and take orders, if not sell these. I am working on the next batch for the artist opening on Saturday evening and then start filling the book orders.

Yes, the book is still available and if you are interested, I will still cover the US shipping cost and part of the International shipping cost. So here (again) are the artist book publication details:

Self-published, publication date; May 2018 (concurrent with exhibition at Fabrik Projects, Los Angeles, CA)

Stiff covers with flap-over French fold, Leporello book design

Pages: 66 pages (blank verso)

Photographs: 31 Images, color

Printing: 4 color lithographic printing

Leporello binding: hand-bound by the artist

Book design and layout by the artist

Artist book, edition size 99 + 5 A/P

Book trim size: 6-1/2” x 8-1/4” (165mm x 210mm)

Acknowledgements & Colophon, without essays, captions or pagination

Cover paper: 18 pt C1s Tango

Interior paper: 80# GPA Uncoated Text

Text: English and Spanish

Retail price: $59.50 USD

So ping me if you are interested in a copy of this edition! doug@douglasstockdale.com

Cheers!

April 23, 2018

Fabrik Projects exhibition preparations

Filed under: Art, Middle Ground, Photobook, Photography, Projects/Series — Tags: , , — Douglas Stockdale @ 2:13 am

Alternative CrossingAlternative Crossing (Middle Ground) 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale

With the pending exhibition at Fabrik Project next month quickly coming up fast, there are a bunch of things that I need to do to prepare for this.

I guess it never fails; I have the web-images for the project prepared and then the gallery would like these in another format and size. Not really a big deal, but it just takes some time to open the files to resize and format, which has been completed and sent to the gallery last Friday.

Now that the final edit of the book is completed I needed to update my web site for Middle Ground, deleting images that did not make the cut and up-loading new images that did. As well as replacing a few images that required some additional tweaks. Likewise I also need to reorder the sequence of the images on the web site to provide more alignment and become more in sync with the book’s interior. I completed this small web-site task earlier today and as well as updating my on-line CV with the recent LACP Faculty group exhibition and my book talk at the Palos Verdes Art Center.

Last was printing one of my Middle Ground images at 42 x 52″, a new larger size for me. I will have to admit that this photograph looks amazing and thinking back, not sure why I did not make larger prints like this sooner. When I was doing the project review at the gallery, I had brought with me a 30 x 40″ c-print, and he thought it looked great and that going to 40 x 50″ should look fine. He was correct. So the print is at the custom framer and it should be ready in plenty of time for the May 5th opening.

So now I have most of the print and information to the gallery, I need to re-focus on finishing the leporello book. The goal is to have at least the final book proof available on May 5th if I do not have any final copies bound. As a result of the publication schedule being moved up for this exhibition opening, this precludes the chance to do a 30 day Kickstarter project. I was on the fence about doing a Kickstarter project anyhow, so maybe another book project at another time. This book production is going to be tight. sigh.

Nevertheless, it’s all good!

Cheers

 

 

April 18, 2018

Exhibition News; Douglas Stockdale at Fabrik Projects

Filed under: Art Market, Middle Ground, Photobook, Photography, Projects/Series — Tags: , , — Douglas Stockdale @ 6:08 pm

Surveillance

Surveillance (Middle Ground/En Medio Tierra project) 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale

I am really excited to announce the exhibition of my project Middle Ground/En Medio Tierra at Fabrik Projects, an LA gallery located near Culver City.

Exhibition dates: Saturday, May 5th thru Saturday, June 2nd, 2018

Artist reception: Saturday, May 12th, 2018

Location: Fabrik Projects, 2636 S. La Cienega Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90034

We are also planning for the artist book launch of my self-published Middle Ground/En Medio Tierra in conjunction with this exhibition, more details on the book’s availability to follow shortly. Yes, there are some other interesting developments about the publication of my artist book as well. and it’s all good.

This is a two-person exhibition in conjunction with (correction) Marilyn Sanders, a SoCal photographer. Meanwhile, it’s a bit crazy here in the studio with all of the things that I need to prepare for this exhibition, but in a very good way.

So if you on the left coast on May 12th, I hope you can join me during the artist reception.

Cheers!

March 28, 2018

En Medio Tierra – Middle Ground

Filed under: Books, Middle Ground, Photobook, Projects/Series — Tags: , , — Douglas Stockdale @ 10:03 pm

Middle_Ground_Book-dummy_4_cover

Middle Ground, book dummy 2018 copyright Douglas Stockdale

When I was re-examining my Middle Ground project in the context of how symbolic the subject was to the issues facing the DREAMers, I realized that another way to underscore this concept was to have the book’s text in both English and Spanish.

A gringo process to complete the translations is to go to Google translate, but I understood that this process could only provide a starting approximation. Thus I leaned into my cousin Ashley and her husband Ralph Hernandez to help me get the Spanish (Espanol) translation correct, or as they say, what sounds right to the Spanish ear.

For the most part I did not want a literal translation of my English words, especially the book’s title, but I still needed something accurate for the book’s Colophon/Colofon.

Thus we played with some various alternatives and synonyms for the book title as to what might be related to both the words Middle and Ground would work with my concept. So after some back and forth, we settled on En Medio Tierra as “in (between) the middle ground (earth)”. Ralph, who will be the Text Editor for my edition, had the final say and now we were good to go for the book’s title!

Cheers,

Doug

PS Let me know if you want to be placed on my growing interest list (doug@douglasstockdale.com) for Middle Ground. More news about the final price and fund raising campaign shortly!

March 17, 2018

Middle Ground – Book-dummy #4 for presentation at LACP tomorrow

Filed under: Books, Middle Ground, Photobook, Projects/Series, Uncategorized — Tags: , , — Douglas Stockdale @ 12:57 am

Middle_Ground_Book-dummy_4_cover

Middle Ground, Book-dummy #4, 2018 copyright Douglas Stockdale

One of the take-aways from the leporello book-dummy kit that I had received from the printer was some additional design tweaks to the cover. Two days ago I received a couple of samples of the revised cover design; I think a Winner is in the House!

To complete this dummy, I had to tip in the anticipated photograph for this cover, above, then glue in the leporello pages and simulate the interior cover page. One of the final design tweaks is to decide if I want to have the project and my name on the front cover or only printed on the spine. As it appears now, above, without text on the front cover, it appears to have a unobstructed look at one of my subjects, which I think is in alignment with my concept for this project. Now thinking, maybe add a paper belly band with the additional text?

I have some ideas of how to further strength the book design with some very minor tweaks and I am looking forward to meeting with my printer, Dual Graphics, at the LACP Spring event tomorrow.

So I am getting ready for my first show-n-tell with what I think is the final design (the presentation at PADA earlier this month was with the pending book design, and first book talk about the project) for this project. I have to pinch myself that I am on the edge of getting this project published after an intense year and half working on it. Since I am still considering a Kickstarter to raise the funds for printing, I will be taking names for the growing interest list again tomorrow.

Kinda weird holding this book dummy knowing that this could essentially be the first real example of the final intended book. The interior pages are still off the copy machine, so these pictures don’t look so great, but provides the look of what the leporello design will approximate. Lessons learned from an earlier book-dummy; use thin copy paper so that I don’t increase the depth of the interior to the point that it does not fit within the cover! This is getting really exciting.

So I am looking forward to my two LACP presentations tomorrow, a mini-seminar on Photo Book Pre-visualization and moderator for the Photo Book discussion panel on How to Get Your Photo Book Published, while getting some more feedback on this book and project.

Reminder: Let me know if you want to be placed on my growing interest list (doug@douglasstockdale.com) for Middle Ground. More news about the final price and fund raising campaign shortly!

March 6, 2018

Middle Ground – Book Dummy #3

Filed under: Books, Middle Ground, Photobook, Projects/Series — Tags: , , , — Douglas Stockdale @ 1:14 am

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Middle Ground, Book Dummy #3, leporello design 2018 copyright by Douglas Stockdale

This is an update on my artist project Middle Ground and the background story of why I created my third book dummy. In one regard I am very happy with this book dummy as this is the very first time I created a leporello book from scratch.

But first, why a third book dummy? A quick recap, the first book dummy was a proof of concept that helped me further visualize this project in a book form. What I quickly realized is that I did not like the loose and unhinged covers, that I like the covers connected with a spine. What I did like is how my concept for this book was developing; that by carefully cropping each image, I could create a continuous line with the top edge of the border wall as the leporello unfolded. Very, very nice!

The second book dummy was made at scale of what I intended the book to look like with the interior images an impressive 12″w x 9-1/2″ h. Now this looked great. The other design aspect was whether to include a small white margin around each photograph, which I had included in the book dummy #2.

To help with that design question, I created this book dummy #3 in which the images are trimmed with a full bleed. In checking with my prospective printer, I found that I still did not trim enough of each image off to simulate the book printing process. But it was enough to understand that I had one important image that was at risk with a full bleed printing process. Perhaps I did not need to create a complete book dummy to understand this aspect, but I also wanted a scaled-down version to be able to carry around with me (book dummy #2 is too big and too  awkward to carry around).

The fun part of building this entire book from scratch was playing with the wrap around cover (below) in which one of my images will extend from the front to the back. I am also realizing that in order to do this, I need to seriously crop the image and may not visually work as I intended. So this is another design issue to wrestle with; what to do with the outside covers.

I am now in the midst of getting some final printing quotes and we are working on some alternative designs for the interior layout and covers. This may lead to a Book Dummy #4. But after watching to Oscar’s last night and how Jordan Peele re-wrote his screen play like 20 times, the fact that I might need to do Book Dummy #4 is like a walk in the park (plus, did I mention how fun it is to build a book from scratch?)

Equally interesting is in a discussion with a Mexican photographer/book artist friend, in addition to having the colophon in both English and Spanish (España) also understanding how Middle Ground symbolically investigates the issues of DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) and the Dreamers. So more shortly about how that will be broadening the scope of this project.

Let me know if you want to be placed on the interest list (doug@douglasstockdale.com) for Middle Ground, which delightfully is steadily growing 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!)

Cheers!

Douglas_Stockdale_Middle_Ground_Dummy_3_cover

Douglas_Stockdale_Middle_Ground_Dummy_3_interior_1

Douglas_Stockdale_Middle_Ground_Dummy_3_leporello_top_view

February 28, 2018

Middle Ground – Book Dummy #2 at scale

Filed under: Books, Middle Ground, Projects/Series — Tags: , , — Douglas Stockdale @ 4:00 pm

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Middle Ground, Book Dummy #2, top view 2018 copyright Douglas Stockdale

Earlier this month I had discussed my first book dummy (proof of concept) that I had developed for the Middle Ground project to explore the idea of using a leporello (accordion) book design.

My next step was to create a book dummy (#2) that has the page count and interior photographs would be at the approximated final (trim) size of what I had envisioned. This should be very similar to the reader’s experience and I really wanted to visually how the 12″ wide page images would look. To simulate the final book with this book dummy, I took a page from my book design workshop and placed my photographs inside a similar size and designed book. In this case the backbone for my book dummy was the leporello book by Robert Lyons, Pictures from the Next Day, published by Zatara Press, which I had reviewed earlier here.

The Lyons book is slightly larger than the trim size I had envisioned, but using this book as my back-bone allowed me to experiment with another design element for this book; did I want small white margins around each image or did I want to have the image printed full bleed without white margins? For the later, I did make another book dummy (#3) with full bleed images for comparison. The white margin is a design issue related to aesthetics, practicality and consistency for my concept.

I think practicality is going to drive this decision as a full bleed means that when each page is printed, a very slight portion of the image is trimmed away. So would any of the images suffer as a result of this? Regretfully I do have one important image in which part of the subject just barely touches the top of the image frame. Any trimming of this image during the book production I feel is going to have an adverse visual effect on this photograph.

All in all, I really enjoy the large images that result with this book dummy. The question may come down to the resulting cost of this book. I am in the process of obtaining some printing and bindery quotes to potentially self-publish this book as soon as possible.

I posted a poll over the weekend as to the question of which of the conceptual subjects for two different projects is more of concern and it appears that finishing this project first is not an issue. Also as anticipated for the daily unexpectable with our White House, da’ wall was a news item again over the weekend. So I will keep moving ahead!

Let me know if you want to be placed on the interest list (doug@douglasstockdale.com) 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!)

In the image below, after adding the photographs to the Lyons book, I also started adding some post-it notes about the design and layout options. Btw, the ensuing thickness of all of the leporello pages with my images clipped in created such a bulky mess that I can not close the book cover on this dummy. Increased my sensitivity for the thickness of the book cover’s spine needless to say.

Cheers!

Middle_Ground_Bookdummy2_interior_with_design_notes

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