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1950 lincoln zephyr

1950 lincoln zephyr

front sight 2-46.jpg

was slowly easing my way around cars at the front sight show a few weeks ago. run into tudy, who asks if i’d shot his friend’s zephyr yet, as they are about to head out to another show.

nope, i was starting at the back of the show and working to the front, which happens to be where that car is parked. so i finished the car i was focused on and headed on over.

sure it is a beautiful car. beautiful cars attract people, which were surrounding it like metal to a magnet. i guess it could be a chick magnet, but i’ll just be crude and also call it a dick magnet, there were so many guys admiring it.

the owner was following behind me slowly, so i set up to shoot a few of whatever i could get before he got there to drive away.

the other shots are ok, cliche even. i sort of just like the front here for now. that’s the owner, there, just about ready to get in and disappear.

and then...

the hood ornament off of one of my favorite cars...a fifty-six pontiac wagon from the old times car club. sort of futuristic, and vaguely reminds me of the logo my dad had for his business back in the day.


only took a day before the effects of twelve hours in a petri dish, known as an airplane, became apparent. yep, as typical, i caught a cold of sorts. and the bitch of it is that i have no more sick time, and am in negative numbers on that now.

so i’ve gone to work, mostly keeping to myself, tired af, and trying to avoid talking so i don’t go into a coughing fit. my usual colds, don’t give me a fever, so i mostly sound deathly, but otherwise feel ok. i think now that it’s friday, i relaxed a bit, and i’m really feeling it heading into the weekend. i just want to sleep! 

had already been evacuated from the house in whittier...suggested, not forced...for better half’s mother’s health. 

seems she caught something anyway, and i was called back to help take her to a doctor. stayed for a night and am again staying away, so maybe my better half doesn’t catch it too. 

kid is out of town with her dog and the new boy toy, so i’m hiding out in my own house. not much of my stuff here, and not a whole lot of furniture either. never started up cable for her, so really there’s nothing between me and the bed and that sleep time i’ve dreamt of all week, except this here ipad and me flicking my fingers across the screen. 

hoping i feel much better tomorrow. still haven’t seen my dad since i got back from vacation. i want to get back to doing a car show once a week at least. and i still haven’t been home long enough to sift through vacation pics, that invariably will never get seen. well, better half wants to see...his vicarious means of going on a vacation by imagining what i saw via photos, video clips and tv documentaries to fill in details that i won’t tell him. no doubt when he asks about the trip, i’ll just say it was “ok.”

one more week

montebello 2-2242-Edit.jpg

is it a good vacation when you can’t remember what day it is? good thing cell phones keep track of the day and time shift or we’d be screwed.

it’s saturday here in positano, italy, and i’m taking a day off to do laundry and rest. sooooo tired, and i have an earache. everyone else went back down the hill, which is really all this place is, to the beach to rent a boat for a couple of hours. kid never drove a boat before, but doesn’t plan on going out very far, just far enough to jump in the ocean, and knowing him, he’ll probably pee in it.

if you’ve seen my pics on instagram, we’re in an airbnb halfway up this mountain. great view. hell of a walk and too many stairs. couple of days ago, we climbed both the duomo and the bell tower of an old church. four-hundred plus stairs in each, i really was only psyched up for the dome, and just couldn’t quite make the top level in the bell tower. better view in the duomo anyway. tight stairs to climb in both, as they were never meant to be open to the public. 

so, my legs are not really wanting to climb up or down this hill very far today. fortunately, there is a breakfast place just down around a bend, and pizza not far up for later. a few shops if i want to venture out, but i’ll probably just take a nap. 

not posting a lot from here, since we are limited to one gig of wifi data a day between the four of us. not sure what we are doing tomorrow. i think the kid mentioned capri and a grotto. hopefully i’m up for that...we’ll see. 

another pontiac ornament. i don’t post enough hoodies, and pontiacs are a fav. 

on a streak


  • women who can't walk in high heels. sort of just stomping their feet up and down instead of normal steps. they sound like horses walking across the marble lobby floor. but they look good. 
  • two weeks / three doctors: latest guess is that i have a sinus infection with none of the standard symptoms. still look like i got slapped in the face without the red hand mark.  yet another med to throw at it, and the side effects... oh and the male receptionist looked just like the weeknd...i so wanted to tell him, 🎶 "i can't feel my face when i'm with you..." 🎶
  • dad made his decision for surgery, now just has to schedule it. 
  • one brother in the path of hurricane irma but hoa won't let him shutter windows until last minute--likely to pull a leiutenant dan to get it done; other one thinks it will miss him, so goes diving...logic? 


a few hood ornaments from last weekend. quick and dirty, and straight from the camera. i should take more hoodies, like i used to. maybe i should just shoot something totally different. i need a change in attitude, maybe a change in subject matter. just don't see a vacation anytime soon.

have been otherwise busy and melting at home today. skipped mooneyes, though i was up at six-thirty this morning. took a walk around the block and through uptown, just to stretch my legs, but have otherwise been holed up in the house all day.

heard about a death in the family today. never met her, had alzheimers, went peacefully. still sucks, even when the closest people were expecting it, they were not prepared.

saw there were a couple of other tempting evening shows, but since i said i was only going to do one show a weekend, figured i'd go tomorrow. but now it's getting late, and it's still warm outside, and i just don't know. i gotta find the sunscreen. my arms are getting all freckly from the sun and all that vitamin d.

on the other hand, if roll-in isn't until eight in the morning, is it even worth getting there before the sun comes up? especially for shows that aren't out in the open; there's always that chance that the people at the gate just won't let me in. i'll pay the entry fee, just let me in early. i guess i could always look for some club that knows me, and try to bum a ride in their car, through the gate.

i don't have time to deal with that right now. either i shoot very early, before the heat, and before i have to be home to help with my better half's mom, or very late in the afternoon. if i can't get in, i'll just go home, and watch cars drive past the house or something. maybe i should set up my tripod at the stop sign and wait for the cars to drive through uptown. 

bass ackwards

1941 chevy hood ornament

1941 chevy hood ornament

i did shoot this ornament from this side, but feel like it needs to be flipped, so it's "looking towards the future." but the drivel filling the space below, is looking back a few days, about a photography class i attended, here in hot, but not yet sultry, florida.

i've always done things in not quite the proper or expected way, be it kid first, wedding second, changing my name for one but not for another. my mother must have been disappointed at the time, and continues to be confused by my choices.

sitting here in florida for the past three days hanging out with hundreds of photographers, wannabes, and world-renown experts in photography and photoshop, taking in my annual training/improving my skills/learn how to do stuff better at work thing. while not feeling like a complete idiot with a camera, i am surrounded by not just a few camera snobs. if it ain't canon or nikon, it ain't shit. 

i'm sorry. your camera has a sony sensor...look it up. 

first day, i took a class on posing people and lighting. need to learn more about it, since i will have to shoot headshots for work. three hours of the instructor's explanations and examples, then an hour letting us take turns with four studio setups with lights and models. 

here i show up with the only sony i have that will accept their flash trigger. even tested that it would actually work with the lights before class. no problemo. 

before she lets us loose to work with the models, she gives us the camera settings for iso, shutter speed and so forth, in manual mode. check, check, and check, but then there is one setting blinking on my screen--m.m. -2.0. i'm in line to shoot and i cannot figure out what the camera needs to make it stop. to me, a negative exposure is going to be dark. i can't find any setting in the menus showing anything but zero.

i ask the people around me, since many actually do take pictures in studios and/or have some intermediate knowledge of what we're doing. camera settings are camera settings, regardless of brand name; it's the menus that are different, that freak people out.

they all take a look at my screen and get a strange look on their face, not recognizing the display.  when they see that it's a sony, they back away as if i've brought a voodoo doll to class and i've already shoved a pin in it. fine. i get out of line and ask the instructor. she can't help either, but says the other settings are good.

i head back to the line i was in, heading to the end, but they had saved my spot, and i was next. fuck. 

i'm seriously shy, and out of my comfort zone as it is, but i go for it, cuz it's my turn, and we're all pretending like we know stuff. 

i walk up and shake hands with the model, in this setup, it' a guy who might as well be ryan reynolds' twin brother. sure i can work with deadpool.

i tell him my name and confess that i am completely out of my element and haven't worked with directing people before. these models expect that, and will help by doing some initial poses to start you shooting. great, right? 

no. i put my camera up to my eye and i see...nothing. it's dark. hmmm. ok, then open the screen on the back of the camera, same thing. hold it up and blindly point it at the guy and squeeze off a few frames, and yes, the big ass lights fire as they should. but i can't see what i'm shooting, so i pass the trigger to the next guy and quickly go back to my seat, not bothering with the other setups.

i know it is probably something simple but i don't know what term to look up to fix it. i send my better half a picture of the flashing display, but he was really very busy with work at that moment and didn't know off the top of his head. 

aside from that, i've only brought two lenses with me. one is perfect for close-up headshots and/or stand from a good distance to get more of the body or motion in the frame, being a prime lens on my crop sensor. not enough space for that, but i really want it's sharpness.  

the other was my wide angle, which, is good for cars, but i really didn't want to be all up in their faces or want the distortion.  

i ended up changing back to my usual settings i like for car shows. everything normal, screen and viewing through eyepiece just as expected. wtf. i just watched everyone else and fired a few shots of models from where i was. then class was over.

wasn't pissed that it didn't work, because it did...there was just a setting that i didn't know and no one to help think it through. 

i was back at my car, trying to decide where to get dinner when my better half calls and says he found out what i needed to do to fix it. really was just a matter of making the camera not use the "live" view feature which was trying to interpret the settings given by the teacher, and making it a very dark screen, as the flash hadn't fired as i looked through the eyepiece yet. a simple menu setting to turn it off, but not in an obvious place when you don't know what you're looking for. 

oh well. not a completely wasted day, but very frustrating.

i did enjoy the older gentleman, who seemed to like to brag about his experience and what he does, in a very loud, deep voice, to anyone and everyone. not only that day, but over the next couple as well. bloviating, self important, and obnoxious.

i guess he is that insecure, he needed to hear everyones' praises when he showed off some of his images. even submitted one for an instructor to critique. teacher said it was ok, not great, more of a lucky shot. he argued with the story behind the picture, how he had to wait to get it, and that the company had used it for a calendar and other things, with him getting paid in benefits like a free membership for a year, etc. i wanted to tell him to just shutup.

headed out again

back at lax, in an apparently newer terminal. work is paying for this trip, so i enjoyed breakfast from wolfgang puck, but there were also options from the habit or wahoos. interesting. lax has always been more of a run down dump before. maybe i've just never flown this carrier before. anyway, nice so far. acoustics suck for announcements and someone keeps opening a security door, setting off ear searing alarms. 

i only worked three days this week, but i feel like i packed forty hours into them, staying late trying to get stuff done. zero time to play with my pictures, so i just snagged this one straight from the camera this morning, no editing...didn't even have time to slap my name on it. oh well. 

going to miss chicano park day, and i'm really bummed. one of my favorite shows, and better half and i usually make a weekend in san diego out of it. responsibilities keeping him home, and here i am off on another trip without him. 

off to florida, where both of my brothers are, so maybe i can catch them both somewhere in the middle of the state. my mom wants me to be sure and take pictures--she was peeved that i took exactly zero pictures of relatives last week. seriously.

has been a crazy month, but i guess i did it to myself. i needed to get away and do the stereotypical recharge. missing the cars tho... 

i have a few other hood ornaments to get me through the week, if i feel the need to say anything. ttfn, my flight is boarding... 

how'd that happen?

crown imperial

if you think i'm gonna talk politics here, that'd be a yah, nah.

i was just thinking of one of my better half's tales from car shows. my better half usually will tell a story reinacting the situation or imitating people if they're memorable. this was several years ago, when people did not know us from any other person visiting a show.

one of his favorites involves him chatting with a car owner about random things, photography, the weather, whatever, and me, once the guy realizes he's my better half. as my better half tells it, in his best reinactment of a homie...he has it down pretty good, as his cousin used to try and act like a gang banger...he assumes the posture, uses the hand gestures, and says in a grizzly, hoarse voice, "oh, really? how'd that happen?" he swears he's not making it up, or any of the other stories he tells me.

i can look at the guy's comment in many different ways, each one funnier than the other.

anyway, it somehow relates to how the celebrities are reacting today. so stupid, as if i care. they wouldn't care what i think, why should i give a rat's ass about their opinion?

life gives you lemons...make lemonade. it's short, get on with it.

random hood ornament, from a random show we found on our travels...

ready to go

hot rod

saw this car at moon eyes. it was a bit different, a piece of art in progress. i just liked the headlights for some reason, so old timey.

happy birthday to my sister. really should see her more than just at thanksgiving and xmas, when she just lives out by the beach.

san diego has been nice for a week, but i think we're ready to go home. back to the grind, gotta pay for this trip and save up for another in six months.

spent the day in balboa park. tried to visit museums that we'd never been in, so bought a one day pass to up to five. i think we made it to about four, with a cannibal exhibit as an add-on charge at the museum of man. they also offered a climb to the viewing deck of the bell tower, which had been closed to the public for about eighty years, and recently opened to visitors in small groups. they said it will close again soon for additional "renovations."

in the tower, you climb about four flights of stairs, about one-hundred twenty-five steps. each landing, they give you a break and talk about some historical facts, and the carillion. there are open windows that allow fresh air to blow through.

the final level to the viewing level is an old spiral staircase, one person at a time. we were with a dad with three kids and another group, with a couple of women and a guy.

one of the women happened to be wearing a short, floral dress, so she was not only having to deal with climbing steep stairs, but having to hold the dress firmly around her thighs to keep the wind from blowing it up.

on the viewing level, there are four open windows, to four different views of balboa park. out one, if you squint very hard, you can spot a mexican flag in the distance, which is the border crossing. another looks over the old globe theatre and toward the zoo. each of the other two looked either way up and down the street of museums, and out to the city and waterfront.

we were all taking pictures, or using a pair of binoculars they had up there to see what you could see out the windows.

better half said at one point, he turned around, holding up his camera, ready to take a shot, when one of our escorts started shouting and waving her hands to stop him. apparently, short dress woman's dress had at that same moment, caught more than a breeze, and he got quite a show. but no picture.

needless to say, they let her climb down the spiral staircase first, when our time was up.

hot rod

hood ornament

full moon fever

1941 pontiac hood ornament

well, we're on our way back from washington, my mom and i. driving down the 101 along the coast. somewhere in oregon tonight. giant full moon in the sky. i've got my tripod with me, but haven't really used it. busy driving on winding forest roads.

one of my new cameras is refusing to read any memory card, so will have to ship it in for service. realizing that i do ok shooting cars sitting still, and sometimes portraits. but landscapes without a tripod, pfft. i shake too much. that and i'm really trying to like the sony a6000, but i only brought one lens for it, and not the adapter to use the others on it. less pictures, more memories, being in the moment. at least that's what i'm going with.

lots of tweakers in seattle and tacoma, so didn't get all my gear out. but i have it, just in case i cross a car show, or random car in the wild.

one observation on the limited number of classic cars i've noticed driving the last week, is that ninety percent are fords, mostly hot rodded white boy style, and one hundred percent of the cars still on the road are painted with flames. the last big show of their season was last week before we arrived. owners start garaging them after that, before the rains really start. i did see a red flamed studebaker for sale.

the other observation, is that they love big trucks and muscle cars. bigger and louder the better.

so i'm going through fleetline withdrawals, and on my way to fix that, but that's still a week away. hoping to drive through giant redwoods, and stop in san fran for crab dinner, then san jose, to say hello to my future niece. after that, maybe salinas to visit deadend magazine for a tshirt.

yadda yadda yadda.

i'm sure my better half is keeping himself so busy he hardly notices that i'm gone. the house is probably cleaner than it has been in a long time.

love pontiac hood ornaments. even if it doesn't seem to be original.