Okay. We didn't think it prudent to label it "for
DUMMIES," since Wiley Publishing probably wouldn't
grasp the humour. But, shucks, we also think that "for DIPSTICKS"
works just fine, given the subject matter.
As you may know, I've
been writing about, publishing about and photographing Shelby
Cobras and Cobra replicas, Daytona Coupes and GT40s since the
I published my first
how-to books on motorcar photography back in 1987, the most popular
two titled "Photographing Your Specialty Car for Publication,"
and "Photographing Your Street Rod for Publication."
Many thousands of those little how-to manuals sold over the next
several years. But
you can ignore the $19.95 cover price: this little gem is yours
for at no charge as a CobraCountry advertiser, or even
if you're only seeking to capture terrific photos of your car
to post on your club's website.
Curt's Golden Rule
of Motorcar Photography:
Good photographs help you line up buyers; snapshots help you
line your birdcage.
Before you click on the
link to "...for Dipsticks," check out each set
of paired photos below.
Each set is of the
same Cobra, shot
with the same
consumer digital camera
by the same owner/photographer.
The only difference
between Photo1 (birdcage-liner snapshot) and Photo2
(superb, motor-journalistquality photograph)
in each matched pair is merely a pinch of gained-and-applied
motorcar photography expertise.
On the left, you see, is a routine example
of one of the snapshots an owner just like you took of his Cobra
BEFORE he (or she) read my photography tips; on the right...
well, you get the picture...
photo on left was shot with an iPhone; the one on the
right is the same engine compartment shot by the same owner/photographer...
but with his inexpensive consumer digital camera. Now
perhaps you see why I counsel folks to NOT EVEN CONSIDER using
a (sigh) telephone to photograph their car...
Oh! Every one of these Cobras
you see above SOLD on CobraCountry...
you've no doubt heard me preach this before: good photographs like
you see on the right (above) help you line up buyers. Snapshots
like you see on the left, help you line your birdcage. And
be forewarned: your parakeet (or crossbill or cockatiel or
California condor) will probably go on strike and refuse to poop
on your birdcage-liner snapshots.
Follow my tips carefully.
Pay special heed to 1) shooting discipline: don't
roam around your car, stopping here & there to click your
shutter in trial & error fashion. The trial & error process
has already been done for you; 2) the 'Checklist' pages
614 [for the best distances, angles and (camera) heights
for each variety of shot], and 3) the lightinguse
your flash! You'll be on the fast track to capturing (better
than) motor-journalistquality photos of your serpentine
One other thing:
all the photos and graphics in '...for Dipsticks' are in HIGH
RESOLUTION. So if
you have a larger-than-average computer monitor, you can increase
the magification to 150%, 200%, 250%, up to 300%, and see those
photos with much greater clarity. Easier to read the text as
Click on the pulsating
red button below.
Print out the 19-page '...for Dipsticks' manual (it's laid out
in standard North American 8.5"x11" letter size; you'll
need to downsize it accordingly if perchance you reside in some
more civilized locale that uses A4 size). It's all high-resolution
graphics and text, so if you have premium-quality paper (or better
yet, photo-quality satin or glossy paper), use it. The left margin
is extra widethat's so you can 3-hole punch it for a 3-ring
binder and retain it for your ready reference... and so you'll
have the 'Checklist pages" (pp. 614) to refer to during
your shooting sessions (that's a subtle hint for you). You'll find the newest addition
(schematic illustrations, page 14) most useful: its clear illustrations
provide you with a quick visual reference guide for all six of
your most critically important shots. Print a spare copy of it,
fold it up and have it in your pocket for ready reference.
odometer for CobraCountry's Cobra Photography Tips
links page beginning 30 April 2003
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