Monday, September 10, 2012


On Sunday, September 9th, I went to the third annual MACC Fund car show in Franklin, Wisconsin, along with my camera.  This was my fourth experience photographing classic car events, and, considering that there would be 400-500 classic cars, hot rods, jalopies, etc., I knew I would be taking a lot of photos.  I wound up taking well over 200 shots about half of which I have kept, at least for now.  I decided that I would break up the event into a number of posts, perhaps focusing on a limited number of cars in each post.

Although I brought all of my lenses, I only used my trusty Nikkor 24-120 mm f/4 lens.  There was bright sunshine for the event, so shutter speed was not really a problem, even though everything was handheld.  Nevertheless, for the most part I kept the aperture at a mid-range of f/9.  I probably could have narrowed the aperture to f/22, but I felt that for most of the shots a little shallower depth of field would provide a better sense of depth to the shots.

To get things started, here are a couple of shots of the general scene.

These really do not do justice to the wealth of cars at the show, although they do indicate the wild colors of some of the cars in the show.  Interestingly, few of the cars were from the pre-1930s.  A great number were from the 1950s and 1960s, with a fair number more muscle cars from the 1970s.  I really didn't seem to have much interest in the 1970s cars.  Rather, I found myself concentrating on the cars from the 1950s.  I really had not been aware of styling in cars until the 1957 model year when almost every car received a major make-over and massive tail fins came into vogue.

One of the primo classic cars from that period was the 1957 Chevrolet, which sported definite but refined tail fins that included a load of chrome.  Those fins were the defining styling component and I took shots of a few.

I think the first of these shots--sighting down the fin--worked the best, even though one of the spectators was reflected in the shot, along with a neighboring car.

Going to the show gave me a chance to meet an old friend, who I knew would be at the show.  In fact, he had two of his cars there, a 1932 coupe and a very special 1956 Chrysler.  As usual, I found myself taking shots of only some small portion of the cars, including the taillight of his 1956 Chrysler, and the hood ornaments of each car.

I particularly like the shot of the Chrysler ornament, in part because of the contrast in color between the brown-orange of the hood and the blue of the sky reflected in the chrome ornament itself.  The Chrysler, which was impeccably restored (more recreated than restored, in truth), was huge.

In the 1950s and 1960s, the DeSoto was one notch down from the Chrysler in Chrysler Corp.'s lineup, and there was a 1957 or 1958 Desoto at the show.  The 1950s cars featured a lot of chrome, especially on the grille, and I took a shot of the DeSoto's grille and headlight area.

Note the half-chroming of the headlights.  Not sure what the benefit of that could be, but it had the effect of mirroring my image, something I generally try to avoid, when possible.

But the defining features of the Chrysler Corp. lineup, beginning in the 1957 model year, were their massive tail fins, and the DeSoto was no exception. So I tried to take some shots that would accentuate that feature.  To exaggerate the fins, I moved in close with the lens set at its widest angle to create some distortion.

I particularly like this last shot, as it features the car's nameplate as well as the fin.

More posts of the car show to follow.

Taken with my Nikon D7000 with Nikkor 24-120 mm f/4 lens.

1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed how you focused your shots on the tail fins. You can’t say that you love a 1950’s car if you don’t find tail fins as its striking feature. That particular detail actually defined that wonderful era of cars (aside from the bright colors, of course). =)

    Arlyne Nelms