Topic: Books (12 posts) Page 1 of 3

New Book Soon

We are working on a new book. Most likely it will be called Paradise and it will be a monograph of my photographs from the town of Paradise, California made after the 2018 wildfires. 

I made two trips to Paradise in 2019 to photograph.

The design is by the incredible Andrea Greitzer, which, if you've followed the blog for a while, you know is the designer for so many of my books.

I am writing the intro and I am in negotiation with a journalist to write the foreword. She has been writing about the phenomena of wildfires throughout the state of California for the past several years.

The book will be unusual as it is this career artist's photographic response and interpretation to the tragedy of a whole town decimated by fire.  Our world is   changing, shifting and transforming into a different place than we grew up in. Climate change is causing longer lasting and more severe droughts, severe floods and huge winds fanning flames into walls of fire; all these are making parts of California, as well as Australia and other locations, dangerous places to live and a forecaster of more wide spread damage to come. 

The book will be another print-on-demand book and will be published in an extremely limited first edition, i.e. 100 copies. It won't be large and it won't be expensive as we are using this first run as a dummy to show to publishers for wider distribution.

Want one? Contact us and we will put you on our list. This will be an Insight Arts Management(IAM) book. You can sign up here( IAM Email) to be on our notify list. We plan on publishing by late spring/early summer 2020.


Final Reminder and coming up this weekend:

As always, thank you for reading the blog.

Topics: Books

Permalink | Posted February 20, 2020

New Book

I am very pleased announce that a new book of my photographs is just out (December 2017). Called Trees, Sand & Snow (TS&S) it builds a rational around the idea of  "connection" by linking three separate series of photographs into chapters. These are accompanied with short essays authored by me.

The book is photographs I made a year ago; two bodies of work from Martha's Vineyard and one from a skate park photographed during a snowstorm in Cambridge, MA where I live.

Trees

Sand

Snow

Sometimes the planets align. This is the first time in my career that I've connected specific series to each other to draw analogies and to make a larger whole. The process has been tremendously challenging and rewarding.

I arrived at the idea for the book a couple of weeks after I turned 70. This book is my first that leans heavily on my writing. Since starting the blog several years ago I've worked at become a better writer. Each chapter in TS&S starts with a short essay about the premise of the work and my belief that photographs can connect in both obvious as well as subtle and profound ways.  My  hope being that this would promote readers looking at other works of mine to seek similar connections and then perhaps lead to a deeper understanding of photographic essays in general. 

TS&S is 61 pages, 9.5 x 8 inches, in soft cover and elegantly designed by Andrea Star Greitzer. 

We have printed the new book in limited numbers and I will fulfill orders and ship books myself. Please email me directly if you'd like one (nrantoul@comcast.net). I will sign each book. They are $36 each, plus shipping.

Topics: Books,Digital,Northeast

Permalink | Posted December 13, 2017

Portland, Maine

The book Portland is now out. This is the 4th in the series of small books that  highlight my series works from the 80's and 90's.

These are available by emailing me directly (nrantoul@comcast.net) or they will be for sale at the Griffin Museum of Photography. Portland is also on the website: here.


Topics: Books,Series,Vintage

Permalink | Posted July 22, 2017

Robert Pirsig 1927-2017

Dead at 88 years old. One of my heroes, as he wrote Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, which I read in about 1977. Perhaps you read it too. I didn't understand some of it, but the idea of turning a road trip across America on a motorcycle into to an existential pursuit of self and the meaning of life sure did appeal.

Along with Annie Dillard's Pilgrim at Tinker Creek and a few others, including Looking at Photographs by John Szarkowski and On Photography by Susan Sontag, these books formed a foundation of pursuit, enquiry and aesthetic maturation for me and, I am sure, many others from my generation.

Because of this blog and the need to go back into my creative life and its projects, I am able, for the first time, to see my own development taking place in my work. This is now reflected in the talks and presentations I give and in my writing for the introductions to the series works books we are making.

But Pirsig rocked my world. I remember this wonderful description he gave us of assembling his 4 x 5 view camera, placing it on his tripod and trying to capture the grandeur of the expanse of a Kansas field with 360 degrees of open sky and flowing wheat, then packing it up and riding away with no pictures made, understanding the medium's limitations and his struggle to put his feelings into photographs. 

That story from his book certainly was in my mind as I was making this picture in 2009 in the Palouse in SE Washington.

Apologies for this odd sort of eulogy but I offer it in the spirit of the loss we have suffered in his passing. I owe Mr. Pirsig a debt of gratitude for his generosity in sharing his thoughts and experiences and am thankful for the richness of what he wrote. 

Rest well, Robert Pirsig.

Topics: Books,Commentary,eulogy

Permalink | Posted April 26, 2017

The Good and the Bad

Those that self publish books using on demand publishers like Blurb, Asuka and My Publisher should know that one one of them is going out of business. My Publisher has announced they will no longer fill orders after May 6. This is bad news for us as we have made 6 books with them.

I chose My Publisher because they offered a 15 inch book and printed on heavier stock. This was bad in that the books were expensive, usually costing us anywhere from $85 to $100 to have made, but good as the books were gorgeous, certainly of the highest quality of any of the other publishers I had seen.

So, where does that leave us in terms of filling orders for these books? In truth, we don't really know. The company is allowing downloads of the folders that were used to make the books, leaving us with the existing designs and templates to continue with the books. My Publisher has a sister company called Shutter Fly that can be used but they do not make books of the same size.

So, yes, this is bad news. How will this affect sales of my books? Well, it will effectively end them in their current form. Andrea Greitzer, the designer of these books, and I will work to transform the downloads into new  books with the same  titles and content as before, but yes, they will be different books. 

I can see a couple of upsides to this end of My Publisher. One is that in the efforts to make new  books of these photographs of mine we will work to make them less expensive and more modest. For the new series of books we are making now, to date the Oakesdale, Hershey and Yountville books

we have switched printers from Blurb to a local printer with great success. Our costs are less, there are no shipping charges and proofing takes days not weeks. These are very different kinds of books, of course, small, modest and very cheap at $25 each. I will approach the local press, called Ambit Creative, to see about having them take on the bigger books in the future.

One of the advantages of My Publisher was that I needed no inventory. When I got a sale, I would order the book from My Publisher and have it sent directly to the buyer. This usually took about two weeks. In the new small books we are using the proceeds from the sale of one to pay for the printing of the next, as twelve are planned.

Is there profit here, have I made money from the sale of the My Publisher books? No, not really. That was never my intent. I used the books as a marketing tool to get my work seen in an accessible way. What they really were was a repeatable form of portfolio. I have left books behind to represent my work in meetings with curators, for instance. 

A brief story as an example. Anne Tucker is quite simply the most revered and respected curator in the USA, with a career that spans many firsts in her field. She is now retired but was the curator of photography at the Houston Art Museum for many many years. Several years ago I was spending most of the winter on an extended shoot in Yuma and took a day to see the Rothko Chapel in Houston, a few hours drive away. On a whim I called Anne the day before, asking if I could come see her. I had shown her work many years earlier and she had written a recommendation for me for a Guggenheim Fellowship. She said sure and so, after an hour or so at the Chapel,  I went to the museum with nothing other than my Wheat book under my arm.

This would not be a formal presentation, I wasn't trying to get her to acquire my work or show it, I was just coming to see her and show her something of what I'd been up to recently. We had a great time. She was in fine form, enjoying herself    as her graduate student intern joined us and she was telling stories.  She looked at the book, liked the work and chose two photographs she thought would make a good addition to the Museum's collection. Just like that. No prints needed. I was in shock. She had just accepted two of my photographs into a very prestigious museum's collection from a book I'd shown her. When I got home I made the prints she'd chosen and sent them to the museum. Done.

Wondering if I got the Guggenheim Fellowship? I did not.

So, can you order any of the My Publisher books from me before they close up shop? Yes.Take a look at the "Books" heading on my site, email me and I will place the order and have the book(s) sent directly to you. You will need to send me a check before I place the order. You have until the first week in May. My email is: here 

One more thing. I will be at the Griffin Museum this Sunday, March 26 at their Photo Book Fair from 2-4 with copies of all these books to show and to sell.

For more information about My Publisher closing its doors? Go here

Topics: Books

Permalink | Posted March 23, 2017