Victoria Cooper+Doug Spowart Blog

PHOTOBOOKS: everyone a publisher – The LA TROBE Journal

with 3 comments

Doug Spowart with the La Trobe journal

Doug Spowart with the La Trobe journal


I’m particularly excited to announce that a copy of my essay on Photobooks published in the State Library of Victoria’s La Trobe journal is now available as a free download.  Here are some details and links


SLV Site

The La Trobe journal with the great Gracia & Louise cover



The photobook: everyone a publisher?



Digital technology, indie DIY and print-on-demand photobooks have transformed contemporary photography book publishing, however the creative and innovative influence that graphic designers have brought to the artists’ book is now extending into the photobook artform.


Over recent years the photographically illustrated book has undergone a massive makeover, in effect freeing it from traditional publisher controls. Digital technologies have been the major cause of this paradigm shift due to the democratisation of photography, new production technologies, and new funding and marketing platforms. The 19th-century polymath Henry Fox Talbot, inventor of the positive/negative process for photography, was so enthusiastic about the potential for his discovery that he made a prediction for a future where: ‘Every man [would be] his own printer and publisher’. It would now seem that Talbot’s prediction has come to pass. Increased public access to book publishing is particularly important for those photographers and artists who employ the camera and the photograph in their art practices.

Topic headings:

  • Photographers desire books
  • A new term emerges
  • A new critique forms for the photobook
  • A new accessibility to book production
  • The happy self-publisher
  • The artist book and self-publishing
  • A new challenge emerges: design my book
  • In conclusion

Features a commentary on Ying Ang’s Gold Coast and photos of books by Louis Porter, Lloyd Stubber and Mimmo Cozzolino.









3 Responses

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  1. I went to hit the “like” button. Congratulations, Victoria!


    May 16, 2015 at 6:16 am

  2. Hi Doug, there’s great material indeed in this edition. Thanks for making it so easily available. I look forward to catching up with you soon. cheers Jan

    Jan Davis

    May 16, 2015 at 4:13 pm

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