what's up?


1934 ford hot rod

this isn't the shot of this old ford i meant to take. and it is the shot of this old ford i meant to take. lemme ’splain lucy.

i'd been at fuddrucker's for about half an hour shooting away, by the time i got around to this car. the unseasonably warm (upper 70s) january weather brought out a lot cars for the show. the allotted space was swarming with old cars, muscle cars, a stupid prius, and a couple of other odds and ends.

the sun was just getting ready to set, and the way the light was hitting this car made the flames seem to glow. i set up my tripod, framed the shot, adjusted the white balance, and pressed the shutter release button. instead of click click click, i heard clunk clunk clunk. oh crap. the preview showed black with a smidge of light across the top and bottom of the frame. tried again, only it made a more hideous sound, and now the previews were just black frames.

i turned the camera on and off a couple of times, as this one is a bit flaky anyway — it likes to change f-stops all by itself mid-shot sometimes — hoping to reset it. even tried turning the dial to auto and also program mode, just for jollies. pushed the button again, but this time got a white screen of death, with "camera error" emblazoned across the screen. not good.

quickly whipped out the other camera i use to shoot details and hood ornaments with, and swapped out lenses. then had to adjust all the settings and buttons and whatnot to work with the wide angle lens, watching the light change as i did so. just as i was screwing on the mounting plate for the tripod, i see that the light has gone; the sun has gone down below the buildings behind me. so i lost the shot i wanted, and also got the shot i wanted, sans glowing flames.

don't know why the camera chose that moment to crash. i've only taken more than 30,000 pictures with it since we bought it. it's been to london, d.c., seattle, san fran, san diego, vegas...all the car shows...can't imagine why it would give out (j/k). so i'll have to send it in and hope they can repair it. i hate having to switch out lenses on location, because that only invites dust and crap to fly into the camera and ruin pictures. fortunately, i do have the other one, which while not used as much, has quite a bit of mileage being bounced around in the backpack i roll around with me. i hope it lasts a while, or my little hobby is done for. arrrrgggghhh.

and check out that old 1920 ford thing next to it. wtf?

paranoia will destroy ya


story time, boys and girls.

the other night, i went to the broiler. really hadn't planned on it, but my better half wanted to go, so off we went. was pleasantly surprised to find a fair number of cars, especially after my last couple of trips there. so we did a walk-through to see what was there worth shooting, and sat down to get the cameras ready.

probably spent an hour shooting various cars, my hubbie being mr. marketeer and showing off past images on his ipad in between his shots. i did my thing while he did his. several cars from the sultans car club showed up; a couple of them i've shot at other places in the past. some of the cadillac guys also showed, as well as this hot rod. there were a couple of really beautiful 1957 pontiac star chiefs in the lot, one you can see pieces of here.

anyway, to get to the point of the missing piece above, it was my last shot of the night. ready to go, but waiting on my hubbie to get done taking a shot of the pontiac (that's his tripod off to the left). i'd seen this particular unnamed car elsewhere and even taken some shots of it's pinstriped details. it is really a well done pinstripe job, and the car is not bad either, but i digress.

i was just finishing the long exposure for this shot, when this guy, whom i'll refer to as "richard" here, walks up between the cars (in my shot, i'll add), and gets in my face and says in a not so friendly tone, "you taking a picture of my car? what do you do with the pictures?" dude is practically looming, all puffed up like a bullfrog. my hubbie hears/sees this guy talking and walks on over...

"richard" proceeds to insist, loudly, that he doesn't want any photos taken of his car, and that i not post any pictures of it. he'd be happier if i deleted them, but doesn't wait/ask for me to do so. at this point, i'm wondering what he intends to do. if he plans on grabbing my camera, my hubbie will make him very sorry about his choice, but he backs off a bit instead.

he blathers on about how thieves will see the license plate, look it up on the internet, and get his address, then come and steal his car. claimed three of his buddies' cars had been stolen, and apparently, they'd decided this must be how it was done. seems like too much effort and intelligence for the average car thief to me.

of course, i'm sure that happens, but to get on with the counterpoint to this lame excuse for a non-picture. not getting into a pissing match with an <insert obvious expletive here>, we countered with the fact that he'd made the point of driving from his home, or wherever the car is stashed, through the city, to this show, for the sole purpose of people seeing and admiring it. pointed out that it was in a public place, albeit a restaurant lot which happened to be hosting this car show, with many people taking pictures of all the cars on the lot. he didn't hassle any of them.

i can only assume he zeroed in on me, because i had a tripod. probably thought i was with a magazine and was going to publish it without getting a model release or something. i did tell him, it was for fun, and that i post stuff i like on my website. told him, had he wanted, i could have removed the plate or blanked it out, but he insisted it not be posted.

he actually had the balls to tell us we should always ask first before taking pictures, because most people would not want their cars posted anywhere the bad guys could see the plates, and thereby steal the cars. pull your head out, "richard." seriously.

didn't matter that anyone could have followed him at any point on his route to the show, and copied the plate down, or just do what someone did to my ex's truck...followed him home, then do the thievery while the owner slept. if he's so worried about it, just stay home in your garage, and keep it all to your little bitty self. no one would ever know...

anyway, didn't want to argue with him, he's not worth it, and since i respect his request (or anyone else's, for that matter) to not post a picture of his car, here's a picture of all the other stuff that was in the shot. too bad really, because it was a decent shot of this "richard's" car. big mistake, richard. big.



old ford postal truck

well, i'm back. had an excellent week hauling myself around d.c. missed my cars though. already had missed a local car show outside of town, so of course, while cruising through museums, i was on the prowl for them.

now i have to tell you, i do hate taking pictures of cars indoors, especially at museums. same reasons i haven't bothered going to the big car shows here: too many people; artificial light and/or ugly ceiling from low points of view; limited manueverability to find the perfect shot; not allowed to use a tripod; etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.

when i was a kid, we lived back behind mt. vernon, so got to visit the smithsonian museums fairly often. my dad would mostly march us to the buildings on the mall. so i had some memories of where to look. i remembered the american history museum having a hall of transportation: a vast room with 3 or 4 full-size trains of various time periods, with the associated smell of smoke and iron; and a room with lots of cars from lots of time periods.

well, its all been redone. the giant trains are gone, except one, and so was the smell. the cars were limited to about 5 or 6 models in silly dioramas, and despicable conditions for getting the shot i wanted. screw it. i got them using a small, flexible gorillapod tripod thing, but i probably will never bother posting them, i dislike them so much.

if you get farther out from the mall, you can find some interesting things. i found this old ford postal truck in the u.s. postal museum of course. i didn't catch what year. the amazing thing was that i could use a big tripod in there now — couldn't do that last year. not a lot of traffic off the beaten path. and apart from the bars to keep you off the thing, you could almost get a 270 degree choice of angle around it to shoot from, only because they have a modern truck behind it at an angle.

really was great to get away from work, but i missed posting. i'll stop boring you now with tales of my time away, since the rest has nothing to do with cars.