Sunday, October 7, 2012

Random thoughts..and a few car shots

ISO 6400, F-5.6, Shutter 1/20 sec, Hand held, VR on Nikon lens 28-300 at 170mm, WB auto. Processed with Nik Define and Photoshop
Headed to  the beach on Friday and after packing the Jeep, cutting the grass before leaving home, making the 3 hour drive and unpacking the Jeep...I was ready to chill. But the hot rods were in town and the weather report looked bad for Sunday when I had hoped to get some shots and just wander among the cars enjoying chatting with the owners and looking at their cars, so......after a quick nap, I headed out. It is so cool to see these cars packed onto a few parking lots in a couple blocks in Ocean City, Md. I go to the Burger King on Ocean Highway in OC, where they park at night and the sidewalks fill with people in lawn chairs watching the cruisers go up and down Ocean Highway. It really is a blast! Anyway, it was dark and I was lazy, had the 28-300 on the camera, usually shoot with the 70-200 in this situation to gain a stop of shutter and its just a finer lens, but I just grabbed the camera with the lens that was on, and no tripod due to crowd issues. It was more about being there than getting some shots; just Love the sound of the engines!! When there was enough ambient light I made a few shots. The opening shot was possible because there was a pick up truck parked directly across from this rod with a large traffic stop light lit up in the truck bed casting super light on the grill. I had to wait as people walked between the truck and the rod to get get a shot, and had the camera set to Continuous High shooting mode and made a series hoping one would be crisp enough to work with.
ISO 6400, F-5, Shutter 1/50 sec Hand held VR on Nikon lens 28-300 at 85mm, Processed with Nik Define and Photoshop

I enjoy a good paint job on a car and really love to see beautifully painted art on the cars. In processing this image I decided to use free transform in Photoshop. Since the car was unevenly lit the right side of the image was darker and I didn't like it. I tried working a selection to lighten the darker side and do some cloning but I was not getting a result that satisfied me. Because the design was in fact symmetrical I selected the half of the image  that was well lit and transformed it to the right side that wasn't. I also cropped a little off the top and made a few other color sat, luminance, and lens vignette filter, adjustments in Photoshop. Here's the before shot from the raw file. Processing images is a large part of making a good image. I spent the afternoon yesterday helping a "new to processing" photographer work through some processing steps to enhance his images. He has been shooting for decades but recently decided to revive his love of photography and work in the digital world. It reminded me of how much there really is to know about processing images and how intimidating it can be to a new photographer, but you just have to jump in!!
Raw Unprocessed file for comparison.

ISO 6400, F-5.6, Shutter 1/25 sec, Hand held, VR on Nikon lens 28-300 at 230mm, WB auto. Processed with Nik Define and Photoshop

Leaning against a fast food wall to steady myself I loved the way the neon lights highlighted the curves of the fender on this one! and it had some pretty wheels too! was Red! I didn't mind the black graphic of the fender well, it added a cool shape feature to the image for me, accentuating the wheels.

Sticking with the pretty paint, pretty wheels and light from the shop nearby, this beauty a 65 Chevy Impala totally customized with a 450 engine, was a beauty. I spent some time talking with the owner and restorer of this one. So much fun, looking at the creativity of the restoration.

This was a what if shot....what if I try to just capture the lights off that paint. Fun...if I was on a tripod this one would be sharp font to back and I would have chosen a higher f-stop, but because I needed a least the same shutter I had been getting I could not stop down. I liked it anyway!
Fun night looking at the cruisers. Now its RAVENS time! What a great day, the Ravens play and the Orioles do too! Perfect on a rainy Sunday! Go O's and Ravens!!


  1. Great feel to the rod in the first image...fabulous...
    A lot of electricity in the last image...very cool!