Tribute to American Graffiti


This past weekend was the annual Tribute to American Graffiti car show in Petaluma. I’m not much of a car aficionado, but I love seeing all the old cars. I don’t get into the engines and mechanics of the cars, I just like the aesthetics of the old cars.  There’s something about the designs that car makers just can’t replicate in cars today. The car show takes over downtown with more cars than I could count, a couple hundred easily.

This year I went with my father-in-law who grew up in Detroit. He likes the classics to be original and stock. I tend to agree with him, but I appreciate the craftsmanship and originality that goes into some of the hot rods. As we walked by the cars he would say things like “My brother had this exact car” or “My uncle had this car”, and so on. His knowledge of the American cars pre-1970 is astonishing. It really added a lot to car show to hear stories of people who drove the same cars in everyday life.

I took a couple of hundred photos with over 60 that I liked. I’m still processing and uploading them to Flickr and Zooomr. I have a set on Flickr with shots from this year. There’s also shots from the 2008 car show in a separate set.

Chevrolet Bel Air

Best of 2008 – The Complete List

Last week I posted my best shots of 2008 as part of Jim Goldstein’s blog project. Jim provided the complete list of photographers who submitted photos. It’s an impressive list.

From Jim Goldstein
Once again 2008 proved to be an incredibly productive year for the many photographers who read the JMG-Galleries blog. The results of this “Best Photos From 2008” blog project puts a twist to the normal “Best of Photo” list by aggregating links to the work of 93 photographers from around the globe who are passionate and dedicated to their craft.

The results from “Best Photos From 2007” by JMG-Galleries Blog Reader’s were impressive, but this year not only did the number of participants exceed expectation the quality and vision of those who submitted were exceptional. This year participants ran the gamut of experience from enthusiasts to professionals.

Enjoy and good luck picking out your favorite from these great submissions

  1. My Top 10 Favorite Photos of 2008” – Jim M. Goldstein
  2. My Favorite Shots of the YearView from the Little Red Tent by Edie Howe
  3. 2008 FavoritesPhotine by Laurie Ballesteros
  4. My Nephew – Amit Goyal
    My nephew woke me up in the morning and was in a very chirpy mode when this was clicked
  5. Another world (+Vorher/Nachher)Visuelle Gedanken by Martin Wolf
  6. Boy, HanoiThe Sun Shines & The Igloo Melts by Jon Gresham
  7. Best Photos from 2008 – Abraham Neben
  8. Apocalyptic CapitalismSultana Sandwich by James Hill
  9. Top 10 Photos of 2008, My first year in WisconsinSierra Visions by Steven Bourelle
  10. My Best Photos: 2008Shutter Photo by D Travis North
    This past year was a huge growth year for my digital photography skills which I feel is exhibited quite nicely in my photo favorites of 2008.
  11. Best Photos From 2008G Dan Mitchell Photography
  12. Protesting Prop 8 Quan Photography by John Quan
  13. Bir y?l böyle geçti… by Caglar Tukel
    Most of Photos taken during our traveling around Turkey and hiking around our hometown, Izmir.
  14. My best shots of 2008Jonesblog by Bryan WIlliam Jones
  15. Flamingo and Desert Landscapepl?dys’s photoblog by Mike Reys
    Both pictures are from one of the most beautiful places on earth: Chile’s Atacama desert. The salt lakes there provide for some stunning colours and beautiful wildlife.
  16. SuspendedMark Groves Photography
  17. My Favorite 10 Images from 2008IM Digital by Ivan Makarov
  18. My Best Photo of 2008Matt Ward Photography
    This photo was taken in Oct at 7am after a cold night in Atlanta, GA.
  19. Highlights of 2008Lori Jackson Photography
    In 2008, I picked up my camera again after a year long hiatus following pregnancy and my son’s birth.
  20. Favorites from 2008Adventures Through The Lens by Rebecca Jackrel
  21. Top Ten Photos of 2008Chris Moore Photography
  22. My Photo RecordKriz Cpec Photo Blog
  23. Best of 2008Catavino by Ryan Opaz
  24. Looking Forward and Back Graf Nature Photography by Mark Graf
  25. Lloyd’s Favorites of 2008 – L.D. Cross
  26. My Favorite Photos from 2008Epic Edits by Brian Auer
    A selection of my favorite photos from 2008, broken down by each month and supplemented with a few thoughts.
  27. Derryclare LoughFocus Pocus by Albert MacSweeny
    My best photo of the year was when I was lucky enough to get a still lake in the usually
    turbulent west of Ireland
  28. Best of 2008News and Views by Dave Wilson
  29. NeedleAndel’s Photoblog by Andel Früh
    This photo has been shot with the kit lens (18-55mm f/3.5-5.6) in retro position (front lens to the camera)
  30. Year in PicturesMarcin Retecki
  31. 2008 Top Ten – Lois Elling
  32. My Best Photos of 2008Out of My Mind by Steven L. Mullen
    These are travel and nature shots taken in Michigan, China, and locally.
  33. One from 2008Hockley Photography by Aaron Hockley
    It’s a photo taken at night, looking across a bridge towards another photographer also taking a picture of the same ferris wheel as I was.
  34. 2008 in PicturesSawlani Photography by Hitesh Sawlani
  35. My Top 10 Photos for 2008 – by Neil Creek Photography
  36. Best of 2008The Quiet Picture by Minna Kinnunen
    My 10 favourites from 2008, everything from flower closeups to landscapes and starry nights!
  37. Best of 2008 – by Stig Nygaard
    Just a quick little mixed selection of what I consider my best photos from 2008
  38. My Top Ten Photos from 2008Korn on the Blog by Justin Korn
    Of the 1,800+ images I uploaded to Flickr this year, these are what I thought were my top 10.
  39. Blog Project: “your Best Photos from 2008”Jim’s Photography by Jim Wheeler
  40. My Best Photos from by Trevor Carpenter
  41. Best Photos of 2008 – by Dave Reichert
  42. 2008 Favorites – by Beth Madison
  43. 01/01/2009 Best of 2008Brad Barton Photography
  44. 2008: My Favorite PhotosMy Digital Life by Jeremy Brooks
  45. 2008: The year in photographsKatie the Scrapbook Lady by Katie
  46. Gotham. Or maybe LondonSFT Photography by Steve Thomas
    I love the dark and moody feel, combined with the futuristic look of the building. I really enjoyed shooting it!
  47. My Best Photos of by Andre Maltais
    I’m particularly proud of these submissions this year, as it seems I’ve made some great strides in my photography from the beginning of the year.
  48. Best of 2008 ProjectPhotos From The Top Floor by Carsten Fischer
  49. La Arcada seating on a rare rainy October morninggZphotoGraph
  50. Jaguar – by Jarrod Erbe Photography
    This jaguar image was taken at the Milwaukee County Zoo. The background was generated using a combination of Aperture, Photoshop Elements, and DFT Light.
  51. Best of 2008?Suzy Walker, Underwater Photoblog
    My top ten fav travel, underwater and macro photos taken in 2008
  52. My best shots of 2008TemujinPhoto Blog by João Almeida
  53. Best of 2008 – by Rick Goldwasser
  54. My Top 10 Images of 2008The Jim Stamates Collection by Jim Stamates
  55. #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6Mannedspace: Photographs by MT Fanders
  56. Best 10 of 2008 – by Duffy Knox
  57. Future Christmas Card – by Massimo Belloni

  58. target=”_blank”>Best Photos of 2008 – MIZSPONTANEITY: A Girl With A Camera by Elaine
    I got a Nikon D40X for Christmas 2007, and although some of these photos were with my trusty Sony W70 point-and-shoot, these are my favorite 10 results of my first year with a digital SLR.
  59. Best of 2008Changing Perspectives by Jenni Brehm
  60. My Best of 2008 – by Eliya Selhub
    In 2008, I have found myself increasingly drawn to animals as subjects, and a slight cartoonish absurdity always appeals to me.
  61. My Best Photos From 2008Lilahpops – Plunging into Photography by Anthea Brown
    Looking back over my photos for the past year shows my increasing interest in post-processing experimentation alongside my favourite macro format.
  62. My top 10 favorite photos of 2008The Taeleman’s Blog by Kris Taeleman
  63. My Favorite Photos of 2008Coulter Photos by Scott Coulter
  64. Favorites of 2008 XGray Vision by Stephen Gray
  65. My Top 10 Favorite Images of 2008 Cornforth Images by Jon Cornforth
    Spectacular nature and wildlife photography, photos, and pictures by award winning professional photographer Jon Cornforth.
  66. Sitting Backwards on My Horselatoga photography By Greg Lato
  67. Top ten images of 2008Enlightened Images by Gary Crabbe
    These are some of the image I took in 2008, and which rose toward the top of the – I Like – pile.
  68. Best 10 photos of 2008 Have Camera Will Travel by Paul Dymond
    Images from professional Australian travel photographer Paul Dymond which ironically were all taken pretty close to home.
  69. Best of 2008 – Heidi Donat
  70. Best Photos of 2008 – by Luca Filigheddu Photography
  71. Favourites of 2008 – by Chris Brown
  72. Best of 2008 – by William Kahn
  73. Pics of the pops 2008fotoVoyager by William Fawcett
  74. My Top 10 Photos of 2008Always Breaking by Gary Hegenbart
  75. Best of 2008 – by Trevin Chow
    This is a set of my best photos that I took during 2008 which is a combination of Flickr’s “interestingness” meter and my own selection.
  76. Best of 2008 Hotel Yankee Foxtrot by Alex McGeagh
    A collection of the better images captured in a progressive and productive year for me.
  77. Top 10 Photos of 2008 Digital Kloc Photography Blog by Brian Kloc
  78. Burrard-Lucas Top Ten Photographs of 2008Burrard-Lucas Photography by William Burrard-Lucas
    We are brothers from the UK with a shared passion for wildlife photography – in 2008 we followed Meerkats in the Kalahari, stalked Jaguars in the wetlands of Brazil and waded through swamps at night to photograph Caimans…
  79. My best 10+3 pictures of 2008All Day I Dream About Photography by Antoine Khater
  80. Best of 2008 on Highway 89Ann Torrence Photography
    Transecting the west from Mexico to Canada on US89.
  81. Everybody loves the sound of a train in the distance – by Dave Fitch
    A railway bridge in Leith [Edinburgh] that was restored and then left to rot. It’s not perfectly symmetrical, but then neither is the bridge
  82. My Top 10 Photographys of 2008Nuwomb Bits by Scott Webb
  83. Best of 2008Matt Sallee Photography
  84. My 10 best photos of 2008Stephen Trainor Photography
    Mostly landscapes, mostly of the Southwest, but with a hint of other anglophone countries.
  85. 10 in 2008 k|d loftis photography
    My favorite images from 2008 which include weddings, maternity and newborns, families and babies and a few personal images from the year.

  86. target=”_blank”>My 10 Favorite Images of 2008 – Della Huff Photography
    My ten favorites from 2008 include California landscapes and cityscapes, with a couple of extra goodies thrown in for fun!
  87. Best Photos of 2008 – by Dave Schumaker
  88. Best of 2008 – by Jay Goodrich Photography
  89. My best photos from 2008All Narfed Up by Bryan Villarin
    Choosing my best photos from 2008 was really hard to narrow down, especially since it was my first year with a SLR camera.
  90. Mein Flickr Photostream 2008 – Best of – by Stefan Neuweger
  91. My Best Photos from 2008Why Yet Another Photo Place by Rafa
  92. Best Photos from 2008 – by Daria Sukhanovska
    Only until i created this set of 13 photos, i realized how much progress i have done this year: I have traveled a lot, got one photo printed in the magazine and had my first own personal exhibition in the university library and simply had fun with my photos
  93. My Best of 2008 – by Phil Price Photography

Tour of California

The rest of the pack
The Tour of California bike race is happening this week. On Monday, the race came through Sonoma County and one of my favorite towns, Tomales. My daughter and I drove out to Tomales, or rather to a spot on Hwy 1 near Tomales, to watch the race. I picked the spot because it was out of the town in the middle of cow pastures. I was surprised that about 50 other people thought it would be a good place to watch. That actually made it a little more fun and exciting.

Tomales is not in my immediate community, but I feel it is part of my extended community, and biking is definitely part of my community. Tomales has the best bakery on the West Coast, Tomales Bakery. I visit as often as I can, and pretty much every time I go to Dillon Beach, probably my favorite beach. I used to ride out to Tomales at lunch on my bike on a regular basis, but my latest job makes that ride a bit of stretch.

There are a lot of bikers in Petaluma and Sonoma County, so the Tour generates a lot of excitement in this area. The route the race takes is popular with riders, although I prefer some of the back roads with fewer cars. The stage ends in Santa Rosa, where large crowds gather to watch the final laps in the center of downtown. I haven’t gone to watch the end of the stage, but I hear it is quite an event. The tour web site has a live race tracker if you want to follow along during the day.

This shot was taken as part of the 2008 Challenge at You can see where the shot was taken by viewing the Geotag on Zooomr.

Here’s a shot of Jackson Stewart, who had an 11 minute lead when these shots were taken:
Jackson Stewart

Saying Goodbye to My Little Mule

Say goodbye to my little mule
This past weekend I said goodbye to my 1982 Toyota pickup. It’s just a beat up old truck, but I owned it for 13 years, significantly longer than any other vehicle. It was a good truck that served me well for many years.

In September when the registration was due, I took it to get the bi-annual smog certification. I had my doubts about whether or not it would pass because two years before it had barely passed. Sure enough, it failed. I applied for repair assistance and was granted up to $500 for emission related repairs from the California Bureau of Automotive Repair (BAR). I took it to a shop, which said it needed a lot more than $500 dollars and a lot of non-emissions related repairs. Essentially, the cost of repairs was a lot more than the truck was worth.

The BAR has a program that pays people to junk old cars that can’t pass smog. Because of pollution, the state is trying to get old cars off the road. The program encourages people to get polluting vehicles off the road by giving them more money than the car is worth (at least in my case). I rarely drove the truck and I had felt guilty about driving after it barely passed the smog test two years ago. It was a work truck that cost me more in insurance, smog, and registration in a year than the truck was worth and since the state was willing to give me money to junk it, I applied for the retirement program in November. Last Friday I drove it to the junk yard and they gave me my “vehicle retirement” check right there on the spot. It was a nice chunk of money for such an old vehicle, especially sense I don’t have to insure it anymore.

The markings on the truck are required by BAR. Junk yards are prohibited from selling the truck or any parts, so they mark all the body panels, and even the rear view mirrors. There wasn’t much usable on my truck. The passenger side of the cab had been partially caved in by a tree branch about 5 years ago. Some home body shop repair with a sledge hammer got the door open after that incident, but it still had to be slammed shut. The left front fender was a brown because I had to replace it after a small fender-bender. Every body panel had a dent of some kind. The truck is probably a smashed lump of plastic and metal by now.

I’ll miss my old truck, it was good to have around, but I also know it’s better that older cars be taken off the road.

Ride All Year

Ride all year

What a busy week it’s been. I haven’t had much time for photos or blogging. I did grab this shot on Halloween before the trick-or-treat madness started. I don’t bike much these days, but really want to get started again. I seem to always hurt myself when I try to exercise, but hopefully I can get back into it soon.

I’ve also posted couple of more shots on Zooomr:
Looks more like Christmas

Looking back

Lonely Playground

A long way down
I went into the little town of Penngrove for lunch yesterday and stopped by the park to take pictures. The park is one of the few with old, metal playground equipment, the kind all parks had when I was a kid. We’ve taken the kids there a few times, and they always have fun.

It’s not a fancy, shinny new park, but it has a lot of heart and character. You can easily imagine generations of kids playing there. I can easily picture kids from any time in the last 60 years swinging and sliding and laughing here. While the new playground equipment offers twisty slides, climbing walls, and rubber coated steps, they just lack character.

Shot Details

Shooting Date: 9/25/2007 12:48:40
Shutter Speed: 1/125Sec.
Aperture Value: F3.5
ISO Speed:200
Lens: EF-S18-55mm f/3.5-5.6
Focal Length: 18.0 mm

I took several other shots that I posted on Zooomr, here are a few:

You get confused, but you know it

You get confused, but you know it
Just a shot today. Taken at the de Young Museum, San Francisco. Again, I don’t know the artist or the name of the piece. Let me know if you do. Larger view:

Shot Details

Shooting Date: 8/18/2007 15:42:14
Shutter Speed: 1/60Sec.
Aperture Value: F6.3
Exposure Compensation: -1/3
ISO: 800
Lens: EF-S18-55mm f/3.5-5.6
Focal Length: 46.0 mm

Our Love Shines Like Rain

Our Love Shines Like Rain

Here’s one from the archive. Nearly a month ago my family and I took a day trip to San Francisco to walk the Golden Gate Bridge and visit the de Young Museum. This is one of the shots from the de Young. Unfortunately I didn’t write down the artist or title. I would like to give credit, so if you know please email me.

I don’t have much experience photographing art work, and most of the exhibit halls have poor lighting for photography, so I didn’t take a lot of pictures. The lighting is great for showcasing the works of art, but there’s just not enough light for shooting photos. The museum has a “no flash” rule, so that wasn’t an option. I had been scolded for not carrying my backpack below my waist, so didn’t want to push my luck with a flash. All my shots from the museum have a lot of noise from cranking up the ISO.

The de Young has an amazing collection of art. There really is no way to describe it because the collections span every time period, medium, and style. No matter what your taste in art, there’s something there for you. We only spent a couple of hours there, but I really could have spent the whole day. My two younger kids got a little bored, but behaved exceptionally. Kids need a lot of stimulation and interactivity to really become engage in something (other than TV). While I think it’s good to expose them to the arts at a young age, I don’t want to do it at the expense of others enjoying it. My kids were great, but I don’t want to take them there for an entire day. I’ll go back soon with my wife and oldest daughter and really take my time. Then we’ll take the whole family to the zoo.

I didn’t take art history in college and really don’t know much about art, I just know what catches my attention and draws me in. It’s hard to pick a favorite from that day given the short amount of time we were there, but the Hiroshi Sugimoto exhibit running until September 23, 2007 really stands out nearly a month later. Maybe that’s because it is a photography exhibit, but I don’t think so. There is something truly magical about his work. To be honest, I had never seen his work before, but he instantly became one of my favorites. He makes photography a true art form. I’m glad I got to experience it in person the first time I saw it. Seeing it in a book or online does not have the same impact. The “Sea of Buddha” is amazing to see in person. Well worth the price of admission just to see that one piece.

Shot Details

Shooting Date: 8/18/2007 15:52:24
Shutter Speed: 1/25Sec.
Aperture Value: F5.6
ISO Speed:1600
Lens: EF-S18-55mm f/3.5-5.6
Focal Length: 46.0 mm

Renewable Resource

Renewable Resource

Today I was having lunch with my wife downtown while the kids were at school, and I saw this 20ish guy with a Canon T70 camera. I asked him about the camera and we struck up a quick conversation on photography. Turns out
he’s taking black and white photography class at the local Junior College and using his parents old 35mm film camera. I blogged about the photography I did back in college using my T70 and even posted a picture of my camera on Zooomr.

He probably wasn’t born when I got my camera, and said he thought his parents got his camera before he was born. My old T70 is broken and had been stored in the attic until a couple of weeks ago when I decided to use my 50mm lens for Poor Man’s Macro shots. I had also had the 75-200mm lens pictured here. Since I wasn’t using it anymore I offered it to the him for free. He was extremely grateful and shocked. This evening I dropped the lens off to him at work (he works in grocery store that I had to go to anyway). He still couldn’t quite believe his good fortune.

I was happy to give him the lens. It was doing me no good and he will put it to good use. He seems to really enjoy photography, and is wondering if he can make a career of it. Maybe someday he’ll be a famous photographer and I can say I helped him get started. I was also touched by his response. He was genuinely thankful and excited. A lot of kids I’ve seen around have a sense off entitlement, like the world owes them something. Not this young man. He’s working hard, going to college, and loves photography.

So here’s to Steven, a budding young photographer using recycled equipment to shoot black and white film. I can’t wait to see his work.