Shooting ops pop up everywhere.

It happens all the time. This last long weekend I spotted a classic car show sign off the highway. Dropped off the my passengers and headed right back. You can’t go wrong photographing  classic cars. The origins of the art of motor vehicle engineering.

Here’s the photo-du-jour from that drive-by. Click on it to catch the finer details.

Classic Car by Marc Mantha at MAMA PhotographyThis is a backlit shot. You can tell be the cast shadow. However, the details look pretty good because I used High Dynamic Range processing with Photomatix Pro. But that wasn’t the only thing that helped. Some gear in particular, more ahead.

Here are the bracketed photos shot on the scene. +2, 0, -2 in Raw format. You don’t have to shoot your bracketed images in Raw, Jpegs are just fine too. In fact it was originally designer for bracketed Jpegs.

Take good look at the center photo. That would have been the average exposure. The blending of the three images gives me everything I need back in the details.

Bracketed Classic Car Photos - MAMA Phtotgraphy

Overcoming Severe Back Lit Shots

The traditional way is to use a “fill in” or “forced” flash. Simply put, make the flash go off to fend off the shadows. That’s too easy, besides, HDR is a lot more fun to delight in the details.

I had some help with the gear I had a on hand.

Gear On Hand

The Tripod

Manfrotto Tripod. I have a mag-fiber version. Mag-fiber is only slightly weightier than carbon fiber but arguably stronger. The extra weight is negligible. The Carbon fiber are quite amazing too. I need something steady and portable that won’t jiggle with my larger lenses. I have a meaty 100-400mm lens the tripod can handle fairly well.

The Ball Panning Head

A ball panning head is fast. Quick and easy to adjust without fumbling with three different levers. The pistol grip styles are cool too.

The Ultra Wide Angle Lens

12-24mm F4.5-5.6 EX DG ASP HSM II Wide-Angle Zoom Lens

Yes, when this baby came into town, I fell for it. This is still my standing favorite lens.

I set up low the ground for an interesting angle and perspective with the ultra wide lens. The HDR version wasn’t heavily processed. Just enough to make the photo more favorable with some color desaturation to “not quite” black and white.

That was my drive-by shooting.

MAMA Photography

MAMA supports the creative minds of the planet earth. If you come across somebody doing anything interesting and out of the ordinary, or just something that makes you smile, we’d like to know about it.

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