Singular Images

February 14, 2019

Memory Pods featured today on VoyageLA.com

Filed under: Art, Memory pods, Photography, Projects/Series — Tags: , , , , — Doug Stockdale @ 8:40 pm

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Untitled (Memory Pods) 2018 copyright Douglas Stockdale

I am very honored that VoyageLA.com, a local Southern on-line magazine that features LA’s Most Inspiring Stories, posted a shout-out about my recent Instagram post for my Memory Pods project. I was featured in the section for An Artistic Voyage (Exploring Local Creative and Artist Works); as now Trending (it’s at the end of the list). Very cool!

Join me on Instagram and follow along @douglasstockdale.com

The featured image, above, investigates the end of the aging process. The memory pods are gone. There is a mess of tangles, a trait usually associated with Alzheimer’s disease. Darkness is closing in and symbolically the memories for the individual appear lost. As a result, these individuals are lost to us even though their outer physical form may not appear that different. This is similar to Ghosts, which I had discussed earlier.

I appreciate the growing interest in this project.

Cheers!

Doug

January 7, 2019

Memory Pod exhibit sold-out; great start for 2018

Filed under: Art, Memory pods, Photography, Projects/Series — Tags: , , , , — Doug Stockdale @ 7:00 am

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Untitled (Memory Pods) copyright 2015 Douglas Stockdale

A little more validation that my Memory Pods project is the one that I need to focus on in 2019; earlier this week when I went to my L.A. gallery (Fabrik Projects) to pick up the remaining photograph from the Holiday exhibit I was told that the last photograph had been sold earlier in the day. Wow! Apparently someone arrived while the exhibit was being taken down and they still wanted to walk the remaining exhibition. They were smitten by and purchased my last remaining photograph. Very, very nice.

My first ever sold-out exhibition!

This is a very great way to start the year and a strong validation of the Memory Pods project. As I posted earlier, I will continue to further develop this project in 2019. Appears that the gallery director really liked this body of work and perhaps I my have another solo exhibition in the works.

Over the holidays I had started to re-examine this project, such as the redevelopment of the currently untitled image in this post, above. I had photographed this still life composition in 2015 and the image had continued to hold my interest. Until recently I was unsure of how I wanted the final image to appear. Over the recent holidays I started to work on it again trying to place further emphasize on the fading and decomposing qualities of memories (memory pods) as an abstract process. I think that this is a stronger version of this photograph and more in line with my pre-visialization.

I also added a black edge border to the photograph as part of defining the limits of the image as one might think of a using a matte to outline a framed photograph. Another visual aspect to consider (yes, I also have a version of this that does not have the black border). So far, so good.

Cheers,

Doug

December 13, 2018

Annual Christmas card rite – 2018

Filed under: Art, Photography, Picture Postcards — Tags: , , , — Doug Stockdale @ 9:45 pm

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Vail, Sandstone Creek, February 2018, copyright Douglas Stockdale

It is the time of year to send out the Holiday cards, which for us is a Merry Christmas (greeting) card that also includes the best wishes for the New Year. So spoiler alert, our photo this year is not the one above. Rather this photograph was cropped into a horizontal format, posted below, for the reasons I will soon reveal.

So as I posted last year and the year before as well as the year before that, we do not live where it snows, or at least not at our home. We can see it on the distant mountain tops, but Southern California near the beach is not known for its magnificent snow fall. Rain, yes, snow, no.

Thus it is my duty that when we go visit the snow for our annal ski trip, usually in Colorado, which has lots and lots of snow, I need to make the annual Christmas card photo for the following December. If I fail to find something, then I need to dig into my past ski photographs to find an alternative. Fortunately this past February the ski conditions were great and while I was out-and-about along my favorite creeks side, I created some photographs that had great potential. I will admit, these are not my project photographs, but more in line with a fun photo assignment to bring back the “Hallmark Christmas Card Photo”. Which means it should have some lyrical potential.

One troubling aspect of having heavy snow, which is really, really great for skiing, is that everything looks pretty stark and graphic: lots and lots of white with little bits of dark. So the challenge is to find a little bit of color that I can worked on later in the studio.

So while hiking up the side of the creek I spied this little leafless bush poking out of the snow which had some potential. The resulting image was made with a (normal) 50mm f/1.4 lens on my 5DMk3 in conjunction with a tripod. The exposure was with the lens pretty wide open to allow the background to go slightly out of focus, but with enough definition to know that there is a creek back there and retain some foreground snow texture. I also like that this photograph has a hint of abstract qualities; the focused graphic lines of the branches in the foreground in conjunction with the softer lines and shapes in the background.

Why the vertical versus the horizontal format?  As you might suspect; which was the photograph format that was the best fit for the card template that I wanted to use? If I wanted one of these two alternatives of this photograph for an exhibition; I would probably go with the horizontal layout. I like the open view point of the horizontal composition and the horizontal framing feels just a bit too constricting in the way some of the outside branches are turncated. Nevertheless, the horizontal photograph looks great on the printed cards (by the way, I used Dual Graphics, Brea, CA to print these cards)

At the very bottom of this post is a photograph that I had in initially in mind for the card. A close second for this year.

Merry Christmas & the very best for the New Year!

Doug

Btw, if you enjoy these photographs and you would like to purchase a print, message me as to the sizes that are available or the size you would like to acquire.

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November 29, 2018

Fabrik Projects 2018 Holiday Pop-up

Filed under: Art, Art Market, Memory pods, Photography, Projects/Series — Tags: , , — Doug Stockdale @ 4:45 am

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Loss, Memory Pods, 2014 copyright Douglas Stockdale

I will have a couple of framed photographs on exhibit at Fabrik Projects for the month of December as part of their “2018 Holiday Pop-up”. This is a group show that will feature artwork that is reasonably priced for the holidays. My photographs are from my Memory Pod series, and Loss, above,  recently garnering an Honorable Mention at IFAC’s “All Media” exhibition.

The exhibition opening reception is this Saturday, from 6pm to 9pm at the gallery, located at 2636 South La Cienega Blvd, Los Angeles, California and the exhibition extends through the end of December.

Joining me for this group exhibition are a diverse group of artists, including Amadea Bailey, Yuri Boyko, J.T. Burke, Jessie Chaney, Martin Cox, Betsy Enzensberger, Cia Foreman, Astrid Francis & Bob Francis, Rob Grad, Sarah Hadley, Maureen Haldeman, JJ L’Heureux, Elizabeth Kitchen, Brandon Kusher, Patrick Ramsey, SameSource, Marilyn Sanders, Linda Stelling, Jane Szabo, Sharon Weiner, Glen Wexler and Nancy Wise.

Let me know if you would like more information about these photographs.

Cheers!

Doug

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October 18, 2018

Evidence tape at Trabuco Flats

Filed under: Projects/Series, Trabuco Flats Mystery — Tags: , , , — Doug Stockdale @ 9:39 pm

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study, Mystery on Trabuco Flats 2018 copyright Douglas Stockdale

One of the aspects of this Mystery that I am exploring are the various alternatives to utilize in how I narrate this story. In one respect, this photograph is also a mash-up of the real and my imagination that results in something that might described as surreal.

The image above is a case in point; I had been contemplating the use of some “crime” tape in conjunction with some of the suspicious circumstances I had found earlier. I did one set of visual studies using a measuring tape to simulate the collection of evidence, but those images are still in evaluation.

Meanwhile during one of my daily walks I came across a small construction site that somebody had used some Caution tape to mark off part of the area. In the process they had utilized one of the adjacent trees as part of their boundary. The randomness of how it was wrapped around the tree appeared to resemble something abstract. One aspect that appealed to me is that it did not look as though I needed to make any modifications to the way the tape was used or how it was lying on the tree. Nice! Initially when I saw this arrangement the sky was still overcast, but on the return trip there was some breaking light that provided an interesting highlights within the composition, which is the image above. Extra Nice!

I quickly made a series of photographs intending to immediately come back with another camera to take advantage of this man-made urban still-life, but life intervened. It was a couple of days before I could return. The site was similar in appearance but not quite the same. Nevertheless, I could now visualize how this element might be something I include in my investigation.

When the new ink arrives for my printer next Monday, this will one of the images I want to print at 16 x 20″ to see how it holds up. This appears that it has some interesting potential. Meanwhile, I will be looking for a roll of yellow tape and it might be interesting to see what’s available on the web.

Cheers!

April 11, 2018

Meanwhile, back on the ranch

Filed under: Memory pods, Photography, Projects/Series — Tags: — Doug Stockdale @ 10:25 pm

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Memory Pods, April 2018 copyright Douglas Stockdale

While I am going slightly crazy preparing to launch a Kickstarter campaign for the Middle Ground project, the weather has warmed and my aloa vera are budding. It is Memory Pods season again!

This is my fourth season of working on the Memory Pods project at my studio. For this project I have not been waiting for a book design and pending publication to share, post, and exhibit the body of work. Main reason is I am still thinking about the design and layout for this pending book. Meanwhile I continue to experiment/play with my subject. Last year I did not become as obsessed with this project as I had in previous years and for this year I find myself working at more of a measured pace, anticipating the various phases as to what I want to accomplish. Seems like I am filling in more of the visual gaps that I am loosely considering for this project.

Last year I was experimenting with the two extension tubes with the 150mm lens on the Hasselblad (using 120 film), which turned into a mini disaster as the tubes fowled up the camera body. At the time I had thought my solution would be acquiring a 120mm Zeiss Makro-Planar, which I did during the off-season.

This is not a bad start. The photograph is investigating the “youth” stage for the Memory Pods, so I consider this a nice portrait of a “kid”. Also first chance to really work with this Makro Zeiss lens on the Hasselblad, which I was slightly surprised that I was not able to get in closer to my subject (image above is slightly cropped). Probably why when I sold the extension tubes I was asked if I really wanted to sell these if I were acquiring the Makro lens for macro photographic work.

So while diligently pulling together my Middle Ground Kickstarter materials and information, I will be taking some well deserved breaks for my Memory Pods project. And a good time to let my Gardening for Ordnance take a slight breather. Otherwise, I will be probably be going nuts.

Cheers!

February 18, 2018

2018 Snow Ski Holiday

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

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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.

Enjoy!

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January 22, 2018

Black & White Challenge; day four and weird beach creatures

Filed under: Photography — Tags: , — Doug Stockdale @ 7:54 pm

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Beach Study, Crystal Cove State Park, December* 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale

While working on my next beach study for my black & white challenge, I started to see something interesting in the abstract shapes. Somewhat like finding faces or animals in the cloud formations. When I did a 180 degree inversion of the image, I realized I had found a very weird beach creature, or potentially two, perhaps with one riding the other, lurking in the sand. It will be interesting to find out if others see what I see in the comments, especially since I am not to provide any explanation with my Facebook post.

I love this aspect of serendipity when I experiment and play with my images! I don’t think that I will start looking for more of these, but I will sure will be more open to looking at what I find on the sand. Could make walking the beach all that more fun, as if walking on the ocean beach was not already a ton of fun.

Also a note for fellow photographers; one aspect that might have made this composition easier to work with is that the day was foggy and overcast, thus an indirect flat light without strong shadows to contend with.

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: doug@douglasstockdale.com for details.

Cheers!

January 21, 2018

Black & White Challenge: Day three & on the beach

Filed under: Photography — Tags: — Doug Stockdale @ 4:23 pm

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Beach, Crystal Cove State Park, December* 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale

This seaweed and sand composition is the day three post for my Facebook black & white challenge. On my Instagram (@douglasstockdale) and Facebook post, I provided no explanation, and of course, no people are in this photograph.

As you might suspect by now, I find these serendipitous and random found compositions on the beach to be very interesting. These compositions are constantly evolving by how the surf re-structures the sand and the seaweed, so with each new wave, a new variation. A combination of found art that has recognizable content, while the form, lines, shape and mass have some abstract qualities. My role is to determine the framing and then create the subsequent values. I can relate these compositions to the artistic work of Franz Kline, the Abstract Expressionist painter, although the photograph above is more delicate than Kline’s heavy graphic work.

Please join me on Tumblr: @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: doug@douglasstockdale.com

Cheers!

December 15, 2017

Beach Walk – Newport Beach

Filed under: Photography — Tags: , — Doug Stockdale @ 12:02 am

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Seaweed, Newport Beach, December 2017 copyright Douglas Stockdale

Last weekend I had a chance to leisurely walk the beach in a California State Park located just outside of Newport Beach, CA. This was a little confirmation that I still find myself drawn to creating black & white photographic images.

Although resembling a study with a view camera, most of this image and subsequent processing was completed with my Samsung S5 and SnapSeed. Today I did a little more contrast tweaking in Photoshop to tease out a bit more of the flow lines in the sand created by the receding surf. I was intrigued by the found-art design of the way the seaweed was naturally positioned by the surf. Serendipity that I took advantage of with my framing of the composition and subsequently working with the black and white conversion.

As a lark, I also added the “film” border to provide more of that Edward Weston view camera look. Very modern! (hopefully hints at being contemporary, but I doubt it)

Cheers!

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