what's up?

sharper image

let me start this tale by mentioning how my mom sometimes comes to me with her point and shoot camera, asking me to fix whatever my dad had done to it. i've probably told this one before, but it's more relevant this time.

my dad used to buy a lot of cameras in japan, when he was in the military. mostly nikon. as a kid, i only really remember him using a camera when we'd drive out to d.c., to the washington monument or lincoln memorial. of course, he must have taken more, because we have a zillion boxes of those old slide carousels full of them.

my point is, he can talk camera talk with my better half, and understand what we're doing with our shots and tripods. but put the point and shoot in his hand, and he's lost. he fiddles with modern cameras and all the menus, and basically fucks it up.

mostly my mom just needs to know how to turn the flash back on. she just can't remember how. every time. she's kinda afraid of technology, so she just wants to be able to push a button and get a picture. doesn't everyone?

on with the story...


we arrived at the show in southgate just about six am. beat the sunrise. beat most of the cars. they were just starting to let cars into the parking lot to stage them before the gates opened on the golf course.

we like to get the early light, as well as a reasonable parking space. finally decide to get out of the car and go shoot the sitting ducks in the parking lot.

oh, i'm finding some really nice cars, in good locations. light hitting them just right. having a fun time already. then they start letting cars onto the golf course about sevenish. we couldn't get in quite yet, so we both sat on a wall and shot them as they drove past us. fun.

got my better half to ask the ladies at the gate when or if we could get in to take pictures. they weren't quite sure about how that was going to work and kind of just let us come in with the cars. thanks for that.

better half hadn't eaten at home, so went off to get something to eat off the food trucks. i decided to start around the perimeter and was getting some really good shots, without lots of people in the way, sky overcast.

fifty cars later, on the other side of the show, i took a look at a car on the little screen zoomed in. looks blurry. i know i've mentioned that i'm not too keen on this lens, but it seems more blurry than usual. i slap on my older lens, and shoot a few. it was ok, but i couldn't push in close enough and put the other back on.

i spot my better half a couple rows away, and go ask him wtf? now i wished i'd gone to the smaller car show the day before...

my better half had said for a while that we should do a microadjustment on the camera for the lens to see if it would help. well, i had been reminding him about it for a couple of weeks, with the bigger shows coming up, and he finally did the night before. while he set up the resolution target, i made some basic settings changes for the tests. he got to work, i went to my computer to play with pictures.

later i asked him if he wanted to go uptown for dinner. then there was a thing going on at the lowdown in uptown. old cars, some sort of sale inside. a pinstriper.

he's talked about pinstripping his lens hood for some time now. after chatting with the guy, he thought it was time to try it. we went home, he grabbed his camera gear and headed back. it was late, so i stayed and took a shower, got ready for bed. put my camera away. charged batteries.

and that was it. i put my camera away. he hadn't made the final adjustment or programmed it in or whatever.

the thing of it was, he forgot too.

he remembered to tell me to put the settings back that i had made back to what i needed to shoot. which didn't include whatever menu he had been using.

turns out i had been shooting all morning with a -20 adjustment, when it should have been +5, or maybe higher, since i apparently i interrupted him in the middle the range test for dinner.

so what i'm saying, they look like i used some dreamy romance filter on them, a soft blur. so fuck. my better half took off quickly to the other side of the show after realizing what it was and fixing it, thinking he'd be safer there.

so ya, kinda sucked. i am my mom when the camera isn't acting right. he's the tech geek i go to to fix it.

the sun was winking in and out, alternating with the overcast. i had to go back around and reshoot all the cars i really liked. the light was different. there were more people around. so out of having about a couple hundred wonderful shots of cars, i end up with ninety-seven. and then whatever i shot with my other camera. happy hood ornaments and details.

but they are sharper. maybe after he finishes adjusting the camera, i may really start to like the damn lens.

so there you go. i should have just stayed in bed...same difference for my effort.


shot this chevy over with the originals cars. one of the guys wanted to take a picture of me taking a picture, and asked first. cameras don't like me, but i said i guess so. i'd like to see it, but they always forget to forward it on.

i'm showing you mine; why don't you show me yours?

i was impressed by his young friend, i think he said he was third generation in a family of guys who work on and chop cars. owns his own chop shop, and apparently does excellent work. i guess most people don't believe he can be that good at his age, as he kept reiterating the quality of his work. i believed him. an artist is an artist, especially if you grow up around them. if he remembers to send me an email, i'll put the name of his business here.


congrats if you made it through my blather.it's over now...go home...