I was in Napa for a wedding last weekend, and because the ceremony wasn’t till the afternoon on Saturday, I went downtown to the the Main Street Reunion car show. I’ve photographed classic car shows before, always thinking I’m going to get interesting photos, but I never do. I shoot details, themes (like hood ornaments, hubcaps, or license plates), wide angle shots with lots of cars, etc. But they’re never all that successful.

Same story this time, and I had only a couple of hours to spend there. So I decided to take the straightforward, documentary-type shots I always take and then change their look in post with Lightroom and Nik Color Efex. They’re still not anything unique or memorable, but at least they have more impact than straight shots.

This is the Tonal Contrast filter in Nik.

I think this Nostalgic filter for a 1961 Rambler American is an improvement over the straight shot and fits the image.

I think this is also Tonal Contrast.

Selective color done in Lightroom.

Tonal Contrast again. Brings out the solidity of the cars and makes them weightier objects.

I didn’t go to Napa for this car show, but was happy to stumble on it. Whether or not my photos make it clear, the cars truly are works of art.