SoCal PhotoExchange

Jim McKinniss at SE Center for Photography

Posted in Photo Art Business, Photograph Exhibits, Photography, tPE members by douglaspstockdale on March 21, 2018

Iris #2

Iris, #2 copyright Jim McKinniss

The South East Center of Photography will be exhibiting their show The Still Life, which was curated by Kimberly Witham. We are excited that PhotoExchange member Jim McKinniss was juried in with two photographs, Iris #2, above, and Two Tulips, below.

I had a chance to talk to McKinniss recently about this still life series which came about when he had an opportunity to experiment in a photo studio. He brought with him some glass vases and a collection of flowers and then just played with the various combinations. What I note is that by placing the vases of flowers on a precarious edge of the support, he introduced a subtext of tension in which otherwise might appear as a tranquil subject.

The exhibition runs from April 13 thru May 19th, and the opening reception is April 13, 2018 from 6-8PM.

Juried into this exhibition and joining McKinniss are Hannah Arnette, Angie Pember Brockey, Susan Bryant,  Jo Ann Chaus,  Mihai Chebac, Robert Dutruch, William Earle,
Malcolm Easton, Vladimir Frumin, Daniel George, Nadide Goksun, Margaret Halaby, Jackie Heitchue, Gea Hogeveen, Susan Kott, Thomas Ladd, Carol Lawrence, Laura Malaterra, Lea Murphy, Katherine Richmond, Wilford Scott, Melissa Stewart, JP Terlizzi, Terry Towery, and Tina Weitz.

We have featured Jim McKinniss photographic work previously: represented by Collector Works


Two Tulips

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Report on Photobook Day at LACP Open House, March 17

Posted in Photo Art Business, Photo books, Photographers by Gerhard Clausing on March 18, 2018


Yesterday was a very exciting day at the Los Angeles Center of Photography (LACP) in Hollywood. During its Open House Weekend, March 17 emphasized photobooks.

The day started with a fascinating presentation by our own Douglas Stockdale. In covering the topic “Photobook Pre-Visualization,” he took the audience on a tour of his own book-publishing history, and shared some of the thoughts, trials, and tribulations behind each of several projects. Contrasting his commercially published volume Ciociaria with several projects in the self-publishing category (Bluewater Shore, Middle Ground), it was an apt demonstration how projects move from the conceptual stage to the finished product, and what all can happen in between. Doug especially emphasized the importance of the necessary haptic and visceral experience with physical “dummies” (maquettes), since you can change the format and sequence around as much as necessary until a satisfactory sample is arrived at. For his latest project, Middle Ground, he showed four stages of dummy preparation.

Dan Milnor, Creative Evangelist for Blurb, was next, with his presentation “Self-Publishing for Photographers: Blurb Books.” Here too the emphasis was on creativity and experimentation. Blurb provides a variety of tools and printing sizes and formats to fit any idea a photographer might have. Dan emphasized that potential photobook artists should dare to break out of the constraints of predictability and sameness. He encouraged each photographer to be “an interesting original human being” and to collaborate, especially with excellent designers.  He then presented a range of photobooks, published by himself over time, as well as by others, showing multiple format ideas, and discussed some cost issues as well.

The third major event was a panel discussion on “How to Get Your Book Published.” With Douglas Stockdale as moderator, experiences were shared by Stephen Schafer (we will be reviewing his book here shortly), Cat Gwynn, Sarah Hadley, Dan Milnor, and Mark Edward Harris. Projects covered included, among others,  photography in exotic locales, publishing offbeat projects, and the role of photography as a therapeutic experience.

In the vendor area, it was possible to check out products and services presented by ASMP-Los Angeles, Blurb, Canon, Dual Graphics, Fabrik Projects, Freestyle, Hahnemühle, and The Artist Corner. A portfolio and book walk by LACP members and presenters (shown above), as well as raffle prize drawings, rounded out the afternoon. The day was also enhanced by food and refreshments facilitated by the one and only Julia Dean (Executive Director), Brandon Gannon, and other dedicated staff members and assistants. Thank you to all — it was a lovely and productive day!

Gerhard Clausing



Douglas Stockdale, explaining one of the dummy stages of Middle Ground



Dan Milnor, Blurb Creative Evangelist



Panel Discussion: D. Stockdale with Stephen Schafer, Cat Gwynn discussing Ten-Mile Radius, and Sarah Hadley



Sarah Hadley discussing her project about Venice, with Dan Milnor



Dan Milnor listening to Mark Edward Harris



Photography is about sharing!


All photographs © Gerhard Clausing 2018
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Annual Print Exchange & Membership Meeting: March 15th, 2018

Posted in Juried opportunities, Photographers, Photography, tPE members by douglaspstockdale on March 11, 2018


Sandstone Creek, Vail, Colorado, February 2018 copyright Douglas Stockdale

The annual print exchange and membership meeting for the PhotoExchange, a group of photographers who meet monthly at the Irvine Fine Arts Center, Irvine, CA will be this Thursday, March 15, 2018 stating at 6pm. There will also be some food, usually a few kinds of pizza, vegetables and cookies, with some non-alcoholic beverages.

I have discussed this interesting, if not a bit wacky, print exchange earlier, as this print exchange has been an on-going event by this group for about twenty years. Reminds me of a white-elephant Christmas gift exchange.

Those who participate bring a photographic print, not necessarily matted, but it might help, more about that in just a moment. You will be guaranteed to leave with a print, perhaps not your first choice. The process starts with a judging of all of the photograph by the participants and the photographer who brought the photograph that has the most “likes” gets to choose another photographic print. The photographer whose photograph was just selected then has a few minutes to talk about their photograph before selecting a photograph of their choice. This process of selecting prints, then the selected photographer chooses a print continues until all of the photographic prints are gone. Unlike a white-elephant exchange, the selection is only from the the remaining photographs on display, not a photograph that somebody else has already selected.

Seems in the past that photographs with mattes usually obtains more likes or are chosen early in the process, when then entitles the photographer who brought that photograph to choose a print of their liking sooner.

This is also the membership meeting for those who wish to continue to belong, or want to join, for the year to bring their annual dues of $35.00. Preferably  a check as the group does not have access to make a credit card transaction unless someone wants to consider using PayPal with Larry Pribble.

Note: as you may suspect, like last year’s post about this event, I am included the photograph that I am bringing this year. The photographic image is 6″ x 6″, archival matte, Edition of 1/10, pigment print on Museo Portfolio Rag, Extra Smooth Matte Finish, 300 gsm weight. For those who would like to purchase a copy of this limited edition print, either in this size or larger, message me at

Let me or Gerry know if you have any questions,


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A Gallery of Photography — New Orleans

Posted in Photo Galleries, Photograph Exhibits, Photographers, Photography by Gerhard Clausing on March 11, 2018



One of the wonders of New Orleans is a well-established gallery in the French Quarter,  A Gallery For Fine Photography, which was founded in 1973 by Joshua Mann Pailet.

When first entering the establishment, you are surprised by two floors full of both iconic and new work, all at the highest level of fine art photography. How often do you see a wall featuring Maggie Taylor, Louviere+Vanessa, and Henri Cartier-Bresson right next to each other (first image below)?

This week three exhibits could be seen: Michael Kenna, Michel Varisco, and Josephine Sacabo. Michael Kenna is well known and needs no explanation. The underwater worlds presented by Michel Varisco are intriguing as well, as are some of his innovative presentation techniques, such as the image mounted in a fancy cutlery box or the hinged diptych, as shown below.

I was particularly amazed by the work of Josephine Sacabo. Not only is she able to express emotions and statements through her images, but she also combines contemporary elements, in this case graffiti, with religious icons, in large hand-tinted photogravure prints. The effects need to be seen to be appreciated!

The staff of the gallery is extremely helpful and knowledgeable. The prices of the works range from lower to very high for iconic rare work. A bookstore is also part of the gallery, featuring both signed and unsigned volumes. It is of particular use to the collector to see all that is available on their website as well, including prices. This openness should be emulated by other galleries.

A museum-quality experience, highly recommended!

Gerhard Clausing



Maggie Taylor, Louviere+Vanessa, and Henri Cartier-Bresson







Michel Varisco: Below Sea Level





Josephine Sacabo: Barking at God – Retablos Mundanos



“The Accidental Selfie”: Milton Greene’s “Marilyn Monroe, Glass Balanced On Left Knee, 1962”


All rights reserved. Reproduction not permitted without permission.


Pensacola Museum of Art — Mobile Museum of Art

Posted in Art Museums, Photo Galleries, Photograph Exhibits, Photographers by Gerhard Clausing on March 8, 2018


Even editors go on vacation once in a while, as evidenced by my image of Pensacola Beach, Florida, above. All I can say is, marvelous white sand beaches and great seafood!

While in this area, I happened upon two interesting art museums, the Pensacola Museum of Art (constructed in a former jail!) and the Mobile Museum of Art, a magnificent structure.

Photography shown in Pensacola included Richard McCabe’s recent Polaroid explorations of the rural and small-town South, in order “to capture the vanishing vernacular signage and architecture of the region.” Also interesting were his color experiments with instax exposures, shown along with projected student work.

Of course we also are inspired by mixed media and other arts. The work by Katrina Andry was particularly amazing. Her series of anthropomorphic figures in vulnerable positions cast the viewer in the role of voyeur and hunter. Her series “The Promise of the Rainbow Never Came” depicts the strife of forced transports of Africans on the Atlantic, a stark reminder of contemporary connections to history gone by, but not forgotten.

In Mobile, Alabama, the highlights were an exhibit of photographs sharing motifs with Havana, Cuba, the sister city. Further features were photographs and paintings documenting Southern subjects, as well as an extensive exhibit of geometric designs of all kinds, with delightful symmetry works that pleased me in particular.

A visit to New Orleans will be the subject of another article.

Gerhard Clausing



Pensacola Museum of Art




The work of Katrina Andry





The work of Richard McCabe



Mobile Museum of Art: View of the Park





Common Ground: Mobile – Havana / Chip Cooper and Julio Larramendi



Richard Frank Jr. – “If You Want Home Cooking…Stay Home” (1985)




All images Copyright 2018 by Gerhard Clausing

Expired film – creative opportunities

Posted in Photo techniques, Photography by douglaspstockdale on March 4, 2018


Untitled (Gardening for Ordnance) 2018 copyright Douglas Stockdale

About four years ago a friend gifted me a couple blocks of expired 120 roll film for my Hasselblad camera; some Ilford Pan F black&white film that expired in June of 1984, Ilford HP5 black&white film that expired in July of 1982 and a 20 pack of FujiChrome Provia 100F daylight transparency film that expired in October 2006. What most photographers had drilled into their heads by the various film companies in the pre-digital years is that expired film is in danger of color shifts and should NOT be used. The dire warnings from the film companies implied that not storing film in a refrigerated was fraught with professional danger. Of course, if any film did expire, the photographer was assumed to want to replace it, thus ensuring a steady sales of “fresh” film.

Which for my memory projects, the idea that a film might have a serendipitous color shift as a result of being expired is actually something I am hoping for. (yes, in the mean time, I have become the repository of expired 120 film among my friends for some odd reason).

For my project Gardening for Ordnance (did I mention I live on a decommissioned WWII practice bombing range?) I chose the FijiChrome as my intended color medium. Perhaps the 12 years of addition aging of my 120 film would yield some unexpected results that might induce some visual metaphors? I think that my buddy Sandy had properly stored this film he donated because so far, no real color shifts that I can detect in either the processed transparencies or in my scan files. The scan of the unaltered transparency below includes the gray card, while the image above has been tweaked with an adjustment layer for some curve modifications (slight s curve).

So could using expired film add another dimension to a creative project? I think so, but so far for this 12 year overripe block of film, regretfully not yet. Although I am now tempted to hold on to this film for a little bit longer, I think that this expired film is suitable for this current project and adds a subtle dimension to my narrative. I will use what I need for now and if any of this film is left over from this project, all the better for another day and project.

Now I am worried about my 36 year old expired black&white film, will it be uneventful as well??

Technical Notes: 120mm Zeiss Makro-Planar CF on Hasselblad 503cx, exposure 1/125th at f/5.6 (EV 12), film normal commercial development (E6).


02-06-18 Gray card exposure - Gardening for Ordnance

LACP Open House March 16-18, 2018 — Classes, Events, Photobook and Portfolio Day March 17 With Douglas Stockdale & Special Guests

Posted in Books & Magazines, Photo Art Business, Photo books, Photo Workshops, Photographers, tPE members by Gerhard Clausing on February 24, 2018



Photo courtesy of Douglas Stockdale, Founder/Editor of The PhotoBook Journal



Join LACP for our Sixth Annual
Spring Open House

Featuring workshops, panel discussions, portfolio & photo book walk, raffle prizes, vendors, food, drink and much more!!

March 16th – 18th, 10 am – 5 pm


On Friday, March 16, 10 am – 5 pm, bring your old, used camera equipmentand turn it into cash! 

  • KEH Camera will be at LACP all day buying used photo equipment
    On Saturday, March 17th, 10 am – 5 pm, celebrate the Photo Book with workshops, panel discussions, portfolio walks and more!


Saturday, March 17, 10 am – 5 pm

On Saturday, March 17th, 10 am – 5 pm, celebrate the Photo Book with workshops, panel discussions, portfolio walks and more!

10:15-11:00 am – “Photo Book Pre-Visualization” taught by  Douglas Stockdale, Founder/Editor, The PhotoBook Journal
$20 for Members; $40 for Non-Members

11:15 am-12:00 pm – “Self-Publishing for Photographers: Blurb Books” with Dan Milnor,
$20 for Members; $40 for Non-Members

12:30-1:30 pm – Free Panel Discussion, “How to Get Your Photo Book Published,
moderated by Douglas Stockdale, Founder/Editor, The PhotoBook Journal
Panelists include Dan Milnor, Cat Gwynn, and more (TBA).

2:30-4:30 pm – Free Portfolio and Photo Book Walk featuring the work of LACP Members  (contact to sign up for a table space)

Throughout the day:
• There will be various organizations and vendors present including ASMP Los Angeles, Hahnemühle, Freestyle, Blurb, The Artist Corner, and more!
• Raffle tickets available and prize drawings!
• Complimentary lunch (served from 1:30 – 2:30 pm)
• Complimentary wine and beer (served from 1:30-4:30 pm)


Sunday, March 18, 10 am – 5 pm

  • Come take part in one of several of our 17 “mini” classes and seminars.  A full day pass is only $100!!

10:00 am:
1) “Portraiture: An Artistic Journey” with Ken Merfeld
2) “Understanding Your Camera’s Features” with Peter Bennett

11:00 am:
1) “Introduction to the Documentary World” with Kevin Weinstein
2) “Let’s Talk Lenses” with Peter Bennett
3) “Creating Worlds and Stories with Photomontage” with Ry Sangalang

12:00 pm:
1) “Portrait Studio Lighting” with Jennifer Emery
2) “The Singular Vision” with Andrew Southam
3) “Optimizing Your Images in Camera Raw Before using Photoshop” with Ed Freeman

2:00 pm:
1) “Street Photography Essentials” with Ibarionex Perello
2) “Moving Your Career Forward: Steps to Success for Photographers” with Sherrie Berger
3) “Black & White Conversion using Lightroom” with Rollence Patugan

3:00 pm:
1) “Crash Flash” with Julia Dean
2) “Best Practices Using Social Media for Photographers” with Paul-Michael Carr, TBA
3) “Monitor Calibration” with Eric Joseph

4:00 pm:
1) “How to Teach Photography” with Julia Dean
2) TBA
3) “Digital Printmaking Primer” with Eric Joseph

  • Click HERE to sign up for the classes.  (Please note not all classes are posted yet.)
    • Individual classes are $20 for Members; $40 for Non-Members. Sign up now! Seating is limited.
    A one-day Sunday pass is $100 for Members; $200 for Non-Members.

The Open House is all about community. It’s a time and place for all those interested in photography and the arts to come together and meet, socialize, learn, laugh and grow. Network with other artists, try your luck at some terrific raffle prizes, sell your used camera equipment, meet organizational vendors, take some classes and more! Whatever your pleasure may be, we encourage you to spend a weekend with us, invite your family and friends, and enjoy some good camaraderie, fellowship and fun!

A Time and Place for the
Photo Community to Come Together



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Photo Book as Art – Artist talk and discussion of Middle Ground

Posted in Books & Magazines, Photo Art Business, Photo books, Photography, tPE members by douglaspstockdale on February 23, 2018


America (Middle Ground Book dummy #2) 2016 copyright Douglas Stockdale

For those on the left coast next week, I am very happy to announce that I will be speaking on “Photo Books as Art” for the Photographic and Digital Artist Group (PADA) at the Palos Verdes Art Center (PVAC) on Wednesday, February 28, 2018 at 7 pm. For non-members there is a $10.00 fee, with the good news is that you will also be in the drawing for one of my photobooks.

Additionally this will be the first opportunity I will have to introduce my current photobook project, Middle Ground, a political satire (political protest book).

The PADA announcement:

Douglas Stockdale, artist, educator, mentor and founding publisher of The PhotoBook Journal will give photographers tips on using photobooks as a way of presenting their portfolios and as works of art in themselves at the Palos Verdes Art Center (PVAC) on Wednesday, February 28, 2018 at 7 pm. At this meeting, sponsored by the Photographic and Digital Artists Group (PADA), Stockdale will review selections by the editors of The PhotoBook Journal for their “Interesting Photo Books for 2017”. 

The books to be discussed will be available at the presentation and can be previewed on The PhotoBook Journal website

Admission to this event for non-PADA members is $10 and automatically enters the ticket holder in a drawing for one of the speaker’s books.

Two of Stockdale’s limited edition artist books were recognized, respectively, as one of the Best Photography Books for 2017 and 2014. He has curated/juried photobook exhibitions for Photo Independent and Fotografia Internazionale di Roma, Rome, and co-curated with 10×10 Photobooks and FotoBookFestival Kassel (Germany) and was a guest curator for LA Photo Curator.

The PhotoBook Journal Features & promotes photographers & artists & their published work

Hope to see you there.




Minor White’s Zone System Manual revisited

Posted in Photo techniques, Photography by douglaspstockdale on February 20, 2018


Minor White Zone System Manual, Fourth printing, copyright 1972 with 19% Gray card

Earlier this month when discussing the Pentax Spotmeter V, I had stated that this was a pretty essential piece of photographic equipment when using the Zone System. I have received some questions about the Zone System and I thought it might be a great idea to expand on what the Zone System is as well as what it is NOT.

First the easy part; the Zone System does not do the thinking for you. As the late Ansel Adams and Minor White stated the Zone System is an enabling technology that allows the photographer to achieve the results that they would like to see in the finish print/image, which in the 1960’s and 70’s is called previsualization. If a photographer wanted certain areas in the photograph print (image) to have some texture/information, it enables them to make an exposure that will exhibit that texture/information in the final print (image).

Adams tried to explain the theory behind the Zone System which became too technical and complicated and it was later that the late Minor White broke it down into the simple terms that belie the basic ideas of the Zone System. To underline the simplicity was White’s famous little yellow Zone System Manual. As you can see of my cover above, the price in 1972 was pretty inexpensive (and I bought it for an even cheaper price at what is now Costco). The one issue with this older book is that it is a perfect bound (glued) book with many of the pages falling out; so it remains togther in my zip-lock plastic baggie.

The Zone System is about understanding light and luminescence (reflected light) such that in bright sunlight, the luminescence range that your eye can detect is broader than the sensitivity of either analog film or a digital sensor. As example for digital capture, if you have a sunny day and your image capture has highlights that are blown out (no texture or complete white-out), then you understand the need for exposure control. The Zone System is essentially the color management system of its day.

What Adams and Fred Archer did in the late 1930’s is evaluate the luminescence scale is in ten steps; from white without texture (Zone 10) to black without texture (Zone 1). The 18% Gray card is Zone 5, right in the middle, which is also the same value your meter, whether digital capture or an analog Spotmeter reads. If you have ever photographed a large area of white snow, but obtain a middle gray (muddy appearing) photograph/image, you may now understand why. Your digital sensor thought that it was metering 19% gray subject and auto exposed to provide that image contrast range.

The real idea behind the Zone System and previsualization is to have an ability to take light meter readings of a proposed composition, understand the luminescence of the brightest area that you wanted to retain some texture (information) as well as the darkest area of texture, then calculate what your exposure should be. For analog black and white film there are some additional processing tricks to either obtain expansions (the subject’s contrast was too limited) or contractions (the subject’s contrast was too great) of the film’s development to attempt to match the intended final darkroom print, as well as some processing tricks to expand or contract the contrast of the printing paper.

The equivalent for digital photography is to look at the histogram of the image capture and then make a determination to either adjust the exposure or anticipate making some post-processing contrast adjustments with software like Photoshop (i.e. curve layer). As stated above, the digital sensors are very sensitive with bright lights and can lose information, even with shooting RAW, so you might error on a slight underexposure to capture the highlight values. For analog black & white film, the opposite is true, there is a potential to lose detail in the dark values of a negative, thus a tendency to slightly overexpose the film to make sure that the dark values are captured by the film.

If you are having issues with your film or digital capture exposures and you are not getting your intended image results (what you had previsualized), then you might want to spend some time understanding the basics behind the Zone System.






An Image in Honor of President’s Day

Posted in Photographers, Photography, Uncategorized by Gerhard Clausing on February 19, 2018


© 2017 Gerhard Clausing


After the last presidential election, I created the self-portrait above (with some distortion) to express my feelings. And isn’t that really the main purpose of photography and art in general?

While I have been a citizen of the United States for over 50 years and have great respect for this country and the office of the President, I have had great qualms ever since this last election campaign was underway. I feel that much of what we believe in has been seriously distorted. Surely we deserve better than such divisive tactics and insulting rhetoric? And now that the occupant of that office has engaged in many shenanigans for over a year, perhaps on a day like this we should ask ourselves if we are worthy of better representation: someone who does not get elected with the help of foreign propaganda and fake news, someone who does not want to spend our money on “walls,” someone who does not emphasize tax breaks for the super wealthy, someone who does not use the government to solicit business for his own family’s enterprises?

Your mileage may vary from mine. Please send your comments and images that express your own emotions and opinions, so we may have a lively exchange here! That is what a real photo exchange is all about.


Happy President’s Day!




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