Last week-end my good friend John treated his four-door 1955 Chevy Model 210, 235 straight six with three-on-the tree to a day at the spa. She got rubbed with clay, then buffed and waxed by hand.
John has owned this beauty for a long, long time; I believe over two decades of which 16 years she served as his daily driver. Oh how I wished she could tell stories. My dear wife got to ride in this very same Chevy back in the high-school days.
Being stored for quite some time, she recently received a new starter, rebuilt carburetor, and a number of other bits. She is looking and feeling good…
A new chapter in John’s life is about to begin; and another one will come to a close… Now the Chevy is looking to become a part of somebody elses life-chapter, but before that happens John wanted to take some pictures for memory-lane over at my house.
John took a couple of shots in ambient light only, which you can see on his flickr stream and I seezed that opportunity to light this beautyiful car with John in it using my Paul C. Buff Einstein 640 bouncing it into a 86 inch parabolic umbrella (PLM™v.2: Parabolic Light Modification System). To spice things up we placed a Nikon SB-800 with a 1/4 CTO warming-gel inside a bare-bulb difuser-globe on the passenger seat to warm things up. The baby blue interior is very cool looking but it cast a blue light on John’s face and the warming gel counteracted that beautifully. The Paul C. Buff Einstein 640 was powered by the Vagabond Mini and triggered with the Cyber Commader (which works perfectly now after the “random-reboot repair”), the Nikon SB-800 inside the car was set to slave mode (SU-4).
Lighting and photographing cars à la strobist can be tricky since you get all kinds of reflections from the glossy paint and chrome surfaces, but after trying a couple compositions I found some angles where I could avoid the huge light reflecting in the paint, chrom or glass and found what I was looking for. At certain angles the reflection of the light modifiers can look horrible, especially when they reflect in the glass. This is the best time to get your notes out from Physics class and remember the two laws of reflection:
There are two Laws of Reflection:
- The incident ray,the reflected ray and normal lie in the same plane at the point of incidence.
- The angle of incidence is always equal to the angle of reflection.
If memorizing theory and physics is not your cup of tee then just do what I did. Look through the viefinder, move around until you don’t see any reflections of the light modifier (in my case the 86 inch PLM Parbolic Umbrella from Alien Bees). At some angles you’ll never be able to completely avoid the reflection of your light and then it is best to frame the shot in a way to have the catch light in areas where the reflection is more pleasing and less pronounced.
John I don’t know how you are coping with the fact that you are selling this car. All these memories over all these years. Honestly I would not able to do it.. and I am glad I had the chance to make some of the last photos of her together with you.
I sure hope she’ll find a good home…