Artist's Statement

Kyle Souder

October All Over is the culmination of several years spent working in and documenting the Southern Oregon cannabis industry prior to, and during the time leading to legalization. I began shooting this series in 2014 and stopped in the fall of 2017. I didn’t really start with any sort of motive or intention specific to photography. I needed to make a change in my life, and my brother presented me with such an opportunity.

When marijuana became legal in the state of Oregon, not a lot of people already growing under medical law, or doing “guerilla grows” opted into the legal market. Everyone could continue working with less volume, making the same money, and with very little risk. Jackson and Josephine Counties, the epicenter of Oregon weed, began to change all of this after legalization in July 2015. Regulations began tightening. Fines could rack up fast for violations. It wasn’t the risk of jail time, but the risk of losing a lot of money that finally started forcing people that previously scoffed at the idea, into the legal market.

It was around this time that some semblance of meaning and a photo project took shape. I realized that this was the end of something, and the start of something much different. Up until that point any hint of an idea about a project if there could be one, was “people living and working in this underground industry”. I was doing the work and living the life, so it just made sense. Now it was starting to look a little different, and things weren’t so underground.

Some part of me wanted to maintain the original theme, while highlighting the idea that this is in one sense, a dying industry; or at least one that had for better or worse, shed it’s chrysalis and emerged as something very different than it historically had been.

Digital Archival 8x12 prints