Douglas Stockdale: Pine Lake

Douglas Stockdale. Artist, book-geek, science-nerd. Senior Editor (founder) PhotoBook Journal Make Earth Day every Day.



Pine Lake is a fictional story about a multi-generational American rite of summer. It is a visual narrative that investigates memories which have become incomplete with the passing of time. The other thematic undercurrents are identity, nostalgia, change and family.

The concept for this artist photobook crystallized for me when I found photographs of my grandfathers fishing somewhere on a lake in Pennsylvania. Until that point in time, I had not been aware of my grandparent’s keen interest in fishing and thus my worn and faded photographs became symbols for the remaining bits and fragments of family memories. The photographs became more poignant as there are no surviving members in my family who could tell me the family lore behind these fragile talismans.



This hand-made book is layered, with an outer hand made wooden frame & glued cover that uses a rubber elastic band to close. Inside is a hand inscribed commercial Ziploc bag that contains a stiff-cover flip-book and three pieces of memorabilia; a 1950 Michigan fishing stamp, a Pennsylvania fishing notice and a length of fishing line with a small split-weight attached (almost transparent), all of which are metaphors for aspects of memory. The flip-book is similar in design to a 1960’s Kodak or Ansco promotional processing booklet, including the use of an aluminum prong to bind the pages. (The prong binding is not permanent and invites the viewer to reorder the pages).

What can be observed when reviewing the flip-book is that part of one the interior pages is “missing”, a torn-out section along a perforation line. I am attempting to create an experience very similar to finding an old picture album and noticing some voids where some photographs are missing. (Btw, the 1960’s Ansco booklet pages were perforated to facilitate easy removal by the owner). The “missing” photo-page occurs during the sequence photographs that depict night of fishing, playing cards and someone passing out (crashing) on a couch, so the “missing” photograph is an opportunity for the reader to speculate on what happened that evening and symbolic of ensuing incomplete family escapades that are handed down as family lore.




Title: Pine Lake
– additional contributors; anonymous photographers
– Type of publication/Description: stiff cover flip-book with memorabilia housed inside a custom made wood frame with cover and elastic closure
– Number of pages, size: 17 pages, three items of memorabilia; 8 ½” x 10” x 7/16” (210 mm x 250 mm x 100 mm)
– Edition size: 25
– type of printing; digital laser
– Price: $150 USD (USA)


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