It’s ironic that I should tell the story of Old Car Interior in this issue of my newsletter


Because it follows my article on creating simple images by reducing the amount of detail in the image. And of all of my images, this one probably has the most detail.

Right after I returned to photography in 2004, armed with a new 8 mp digital camera, I had "new eyes" and I was photographing everything. Everything was seen anew and was exciting!

My neighbor down the road had several acres of old cars and trucks in various stages of disrepair, and it seemed a gold mine to these new eyes. I introduced myself to Frank and asked permission to photograph in his yard.

The image above is from a 34 Chrysler, shot through the back window (sans glass) with a very wide angle lens. The inside was dark and the outside was very bright. so much so that I could not properly expose for both.

Not knowing how I "should" solve this problem, I did what made sense to me: I took two shots, one for the outside and one for the inside. Then in Photoshop I cut out the window from the one image and pasted it into the other image.

Even if I had been aware of HDR back then, I would not have used it. My approach gave the natural look I was after.

For the inside of the car, I spent over 50 hours over many days working all of the detail with a dodging and burning brush. Those many hours were not indicative of how hard the task was, but rather how inexperienced I was with Photoshop and dodging and burning. Today I'm certain I could do the same job in just a few hours.

It is interesting that in today's world 8 mp's would be considered woefully inadequate and the equivalent of a child's point-and-shoot camera. And yet I have printed this image as large as 40" X 60" and it is looks magnificent. That's just another reminder that better equipment is not always the answer to a better image.

This same day I also created these two images: