How I Shot & Processed “Gold Hot Rod”

Hot Rod gold in Centralla

Joe’s automotive photography posts have really inspired me to start going to car shows again. Somebody told me about a Hot Rod event and parade taking place in Centralia, Washington. I happened to be driving back to Portland that night and had to stop and take a few photos.

This car immediately caught my eye, but I was on the wrong side of the street to get close to it. I had a wide-angle lens on my Panasonic GH4 so I grabbed the point and shoot camera I always carry in my back pocket and zoomed in to this beautiful gold car.

When I looked at the image in Adobe Lightroom I was distracted by the background so I decided to open it in Photoshop and turn everything but the car to black and white. I did this to make the car stand out and also to give the photo a feeling of nostalgia by using black and white.

In Photoshop I used the Magic Wand tool to select the gold color of the car. Then under the Select Menu I choose Inverse to switch the selection to the background. I then desaturated the background layer. —Mark Toal