Wednesday, March 12, 2014


Yes I could be talking about me, but today I'm not. When time and the elements take their toll on things, they leave behind a unique patina that technology cannot easily reproduce. Sure, the Photoshop gurus can recreate just about anything, but some things are better left to nature. For example:

It is fairly common these days for "barn find" cars, similar to the 442 above, to not be restored. Instead, many get a clear coat shot over the existing finish to preserve the car in its current state. Is there anything wrong with doing this? Absolutely not! Being able to capture a moment in time is one of the reasons photography exists...

I spent a little bit of time observing the 442 above at a local car show. What I noticed was that most of the show attendees walked past this car on their way to the shiny cars parked around it. That was great for me, because I got to shoot some photos at a car show without having to shoot around people, or crop out elbows, etc. But at the same time, I was a little sad for the 442. Its patina and decomposition give it a uniqueness that got overlooked far too often.

So, when you're out shooting, look around. Stop and take a better look at the things that don't necessarily catch your eye. You might find some interesting things to shoot. And remember, if you're not having fun while you're out shooting, you're probably doing something wrong.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Color or Black & White?

Believe it or not, that's a question that I ask myself a lot these days. I always thought that color way the only way to go. I mean, black and white existed only because we didn't know how to capture color at the time, right? Wrong!

While color captures a lot of information, I'm learning that black and white captures a lot more imagination. The interplay of light and shadow tells the story in black and white, where different hues tell the story in color. Is one "better" than the other? No. Both have their strengths (and weaknesses). One of the many joys of digital photography is that it's pretty easy to convert from color to black and white, so you can look at a photo in both and determine which works best. Here's an example where I preferred to use black and white:

Here's a dark green Nova on an overcast day, in color and in black and white:
The grey, overcast skies make the color copy seem flat, but they look right at home in black and white.
Try it sometime on a few of your photos. You never know, you just might wind up with something you never knew you had...Remember, if you're not having fun while you're out shooting, you're probably doing something wrong.


Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Water, Water Everywhere...

February in Florida. Dry season, right? While that's usually the case, we do get weather fronts coming through that bring rain. Case in point, just this past weekend at Eckler's Chevy Winternationals. Rain, rain, and a little more rain fell from the sky and left many classic Chevys either glistening and wet or hidden beneath a car cover. Not the ideal photography weather, for sure.

So, what's a car-guy and aspiring photographer to do? Shoot pictures, of course! Colorless skies can help make the color of your subject pop, and water droplets make interesting patterns and textures.

There's no controlling the weather, so the best thing you can do is use it to your advantage. How many Bel Air hood ornament photos have you seen? If you're like me, hundreds and hundreds. How many wet ones have you seen? Probably not hundreds, more likely a handful at most. So the bad weather helped to create a more unique photo.

Happy shooting. Remember, if you're not having fun while you're out shooting, you're probably doing something wrong...