The Apocalypse Car

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People get their artistic rocks off in all kinds of ways… landscapes, abstracts, LOL Katz. My favourite piece of art is a 1977 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am with The Book of Revelations scrawled into its black paint by an artist using a nail.

Technical Stuff: Taking a camera into a gallery is usually against the rules. Funny enough most artists don’t want their work photographed or reproduced. But in large galleries there are usually some exhibits which are cool to shoot. For the others I suggest waiting until the security guard leaves the room. I used a real camera and real film (400ASA) for this shot.

This is an installation at the National Gallery of Canada. The artist had eight paintings surrounding the car, each one was a vision of the Apocalypse. But all I saw was Burt Reynolds driving 300 horses as the vanguard of The End Of Days. I don’t even know the artist’s name, and I’m pretty sure “The Apocalypse Car” is not even the name of this work.

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About Gabriel

I’ve lived in fifty-two places. I've been paid to pick stones out of fields, take backstage photos of Britney Spears, and report on Internet privacy issues. My photos have been published in several newspapers, and a couple of magazines.
This entry was posted in Entertainment, From My Wall, Photography, Pre 2004. Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to The Apocalypse Car

  1. ames says:

    I really like the colour and the vignette effect in this shot. Also, the car looks longer than I remember. Is that because of the lens you used or my crappy memory?

  2. Gabriel says:

    I used my 35mm lens, so whatever is in the foreground will definitely be bigger than the background… in this case it makes the car look longer than it actually is. Anything lower than a 50mm is considered a wideangle. I used to have a 28mm lens, it was my favourite. Alas, I sold it for food money. I also used to have a 28-80mm with a macro feature on it… but the f-stop ring wore out. sigh… I hate digital cameras.

  3. ames says:

    ahhhhh that makes sense. I’m taking a film class right now and we learned about wide angle/telephoto lenses on video cameras but it’s all so new to me that I can’t keep the differences straight.

    Do you ever shoot film anymore? I know you don’t really like Photoshop so how did you get the photo to come out so warm and golden with the darker corners?

  4. Gabriel says:

    I haven’t shot film for… almost two years. I went through my analogue equipment a couple of months ago and my cameras have definitely deteriorated. The light metre on my K1000 is broken, and I think the lenses are gone. I’m not even sure they make the battery for my Minolta anymore. Plus film is just too expensive for me to be shooting seriously right now.

    The photo looks warm because of the lighting… it’s the ancient incandescent light bulbs. That warm glow was what was so great about them. The compact fluorescents we’re being forced to buy now, like all fluorescents (remember high school?), used to give off an annoying, sickly-green light. But now they’ve “improved” them so their light is a harsh, bright white light. To get rid of the green we used the flash or a special filter… I think it was a red filter. The bright white light is better, but I much prefer the incandescents.

    The corners look dark because the lens was dying. As a lens gets older the edges don’t focus as well, so it looks like the edges of the photo are darker than the middle. There’s also a certain amount of light splashing off the hardwood floors.

    Keep in mind the wide angle lens of an SLR camera works entirely differently than the one on a digital or video camera… an analogue SLR (single lens reflex) will always give you a better image than a digital anything.

  5. ames says:

    I was asked to create that effect in photoshop for some of the photos for the magazine. So I figured that it would be caused by some kind of complicated technical process.

  6. ames says:

    hehehe i totally buggered that blockquote thing… i was trying to quote you but instead i quoted myself… OOPS!

  7. Gabriel says:

    Blockquotes are always tough… no complicated process, just an old lens. In PhotoShop I think you can get it by ‘burning’ the corners, then maybe ‘dodging’ the main subject. Both of which, in a darkroom, can be complicated but digitally I think it’s just a matter of finding the right button combinations… like playing “Street Fighter” and figuring out how to get Ryu’s Shinkuu Hadouken manoeuvrer to work.

  8. ames says:

    Photoshop has a filter to add a vignette to the edge. I think it’s an option in the distort filter but I’m too lazy to check. I played Street Fighter IV a while ago. My strategy was to mash all the buttons as quickly as possible. I lost. But not by as much as you might think.

  9. Stevo says:

    Frickin-OH YEAH. I remember this exhibit. Was I with you and/or Pat when I saw it? I with I could remember, but I’m sure that somewhere in my parents house is the exhibit pamphlet. (this is Steve H, in case you’re wondering). I’m about an hour into reading this and it’s totally making my day.

  10. Gabriel says:

    I’m not sure… but I think it would have been with Pat. I think this might have been the first time I saw it, and it was with my sister (Ames). But I also seem to remember trying to hustle to get to the Gallery on her last day in Ottawa so she could see the car… which would mean I already knew about it. Curious.

    Feel free to comment anywhere you like, but take your time getting caught up, so far I seem to be only updating this thing once a semester.

  11. Pingback: Almost Like Art | The Farm Road | cultural sn:afu

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