Film Photography

Fujifilm Superia 100 and the Carmel Artomobilia

I love to photograph old cars. When the city of Carmel, Indiana, closed its downtown streets late last month for a car show, I took Margaret and we brought our cameras.

Carmel Artomobilia 2017

The Carmel Artomobilia is an annual event and this was its 10th year, but it was my first visit. I assumed for a long time that the show would mostly be newer exotic cars, and those don’t jazz me very much. But I was assured that the show is a good mix of all kinds of interesting cars. So off we went to see.

Carmel Artomobilia 2017

I put my last roll of Fujifilm Superia 100 into my Pentax ME, and mounted my 50mm f/2 SMC Pentax-M lens. I prefer this lens to my 50/1.4 in everyday shooting as it gives extra depth and warmth to colors. It made the Fuji 100 really sing.

Carmel Artomobilia 2017

It’s not often I get a roll back from the processor and feel my pleasure deepen with each frame I examine. But that’s just what happened with this roll. I am comfortable and confident with old cars as subjects, I was using my favorite camera, and I chose a lens and film that render color well. It was a recipe for success.

Carmel Artomobilia 2017

The Fuji 100 really loves green. It might be the color negative film I’ve used that renders green best.

Carmel Artomobilia 2017

The film returned deeply saturated reds similar to what I experience with Kodak Ektar 100. It’s too bad that Fujifilm discontinued this film. I like it as much as Ektar, and it was less expensive. That flare from something reflective out of the frame is a little bit of a bummer in an otherwise satisfying photograph.

Carmel Artomobilia 2017

All sorts of cars were present. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a Morris Minor in person before. I love it when I get to “meet” a car in this way.

Carmel Artomobilia 2017

Plenty of classic American iron was on display, of course. I’m partial to 1960s Mopar muscle. I just adore the crisp and purposeful designs of Elwood Engel, Chrysler’s chief designer during this era.

Carmel Artomobilia 2017

What’s this? One Ferrari photo? The contrast between the sensuous hood line and that crisp wheel arch was too strong to ignore.

Carmel Artomobilia 2017

I’m old enough to remember when first-generation VW Buses were common hippie-mobiles, clapped out and covered in hand-painted flowers. I’m not old enough, however, to remember them as new. This one was beautifully restored.

Carmel Artomobilia 2017

I made so many close shots because, with a 50mm lens, I needed to back way up to get more of each car in the frame. Especially at first, the event was so crowded that when I backed up my viewfinder would quickly be filled with people — usually from shoulder to knee, given where I was composing. Fortunately, I like to make close shots of old cars.

I did get a few photos from a distance. Here’s one of Margaret shooting a Buick. She’s not remotely the car fan I am, and I’m fortunate that she’s so easygoing and will share with me pretty much any experience I ask of her.

Carmel Artomobilia 2017

I also shot my last roll of Kodak Plus-X in my Spotmatic F at this show. I’ll share those photos in an upcoming post.


32 thoughts on “Fujifilm Superia 100 and the Carmel Artomobilia

  1. I love your close-up shots of cars. You have an ability to pick up on and highlight a definining detail of each car in a way that makes me look at and appreciate it in a fresh way.

  2. Wow, sing indeed Jim! I think these are some of the best photographs I’ve ever seen you post – certainly in one batch together. Yes, stunning combo of camera/lens/film. I have to say though I’ve shot quite a range of films and have a number of favourites, Fuji Superia 100 is top of the pile for me too. Just does something others can’t seem to.

    • Too bad Fuji discontinued this film. Cars are probably the subject I handle best. I’m a lifelong car nut and have always been drawn to their design. I’ve had a lot of practice photographing them.

  3. One of the joys of film photography…getting a roll back from the lab with some great shots. Satisfying to say the least.

    It’s a toss up for me because while I really like these, the b&w shots on Flickr are pretty sensational too!

  4. Martin Bruntnell says:

    Wait till you see a Morris Minor 1000000 yes a million they built a few and they were in a lilac colour, ehm

  5. Nice to see a Morris Minor on that side of the pond. I arrived at my wedding in one; that wasn’t planned but the booked limo broke down and we were rescued by a passing Morris Minor.

  6. DougD says:

    Great stuff. I too admire your ability to pick out a detail, be it buildings or cars.

    Love that red triangle on the Hudson hubcap, and that chrome on the VW bus hubcap looks deep enough to swim in. Mine have more uhh, patina..

    There’s a blue-green Morris Minor convertible in our neighborhood. I’d like to shoot the VW next to it someday..

  7. Great images, Jim! I love shooting film at car shows. I love all the colors, shapes, reflections and details. And it’s always fun to shoot a car and strike up a conversation with the owner.

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