Posted on Jun.06, 2011, under Automotive

(Nikon D700, 28-300mm at 122mm, ISO 200, Exposure 1/500 sec @ f/11)

This past weekend I had the opportunity to visit the Gilmore Car Museum for the annual Classic Car Club of America show. This year the show highlighted cars manufactured in Indiana. One of the key companies in Indiana was the Auburn Cord Duesenberg automobile company which manufactured cars in Auburn, Indiana. These cars are some of my favorite because they had such interesting designs. I particularly like Auburns and Cords. At the show, this car was referred to as a ‘1937 Auburn Phaeton’, but the car is actually a Cord, probably a model 812 (although I suppose it is possible that it was marketed as an ‘Auburn’, some car buff will certainly correct me if I’m wrong) Late model Cords have a distinctive design created by legendary automobile designer Gordon Buehrig. The front end has a shape somewhat like that of a coffin so these cars are sometimes referred to as ‘coffin nosed Cords’. Anyway, I love the design and I love to take pictures of this line of cars.

Initially my thought was to simply do minimal processing on this image. I like the color version. I think the car has a nice color and I think the image highlights the elements that make the car so distinctive. However, I also wanted to see if I could produce an image which emphasized the lines in a stronger fashion. Naturally I thought of converting to black and white. I used Silver Efex Pro 2 and flipped through some of the presets until I found one that I thought came close to what I wanted. I was looking for something with high contrast but done in a clean manner. The conversion to black and white really highlighted some dust and other paint imperfections on the surface of the car, so I actually used Topaz Simplify along with the healing brush to smooth these out.

Which do you prefer? The black and white, or the color version? Let me know what you think.

Copyright © 2011 James W. Howe – All rights reserved.

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