Hoods with style – the gorgeous automobiles of Dick’s classic garage

Another photo essay, from a recent visit to the USA.  I’ve just got back from a 2,000 mile road trip from Austin to New Orleans and back, with my old friend *ndy and his delightful DLW, D*.  We were hitting multiple music festivals on our route (of which more photo series to come), and as the first of these was in Dripping Springs, Texas, we took the opportunity to drop into Dick’s Classic Garage, in San Marcos.  Dick Burdick, the owner has assembled there some of the most gorgeous cars ever made in the USA, mostly from the ’30s to the ’60s.  This was an era when US auto engineering and styling led the world, and cars like the Deusenburg, Cord and Auburn set standards of beauty that have not since been equaled (IMHO).

In this series I have focused mostly on the wonderful hood mascots that stood on the radiators, and routinely I imagine, impaled hapless pedestrians. Reasonably I suppose none of these would be allowed today, and there are few cars in any event that could act as a foil to the superb jet plane mascots of the ’41 and ’48 Packards. There is a tech note below the photos on the camera used and so on and so forth.

Click this link to get to the Flickr album, and then click the arrow at the right to page through them. Once the slide show below reaches the end by the way, it will move into the next album.  Just refresh the page to start again.

1929 Deusenberg model J

Exhaust cowls of the 1929 Auburn Boattail Speedster

Mascot of the 1929 Stutz Model M LeBaron Dual Cowl Phaeton

Mascot of the 1931 Cadillac 355 Roadster

Radiator grille of the 1929 Cord L-29 Convertible Coupe

1938 Hudson Terraplane Pickup

Mascot of the 1933 Duesenberg Model J

Mascot of the 1941 Packard 110 Series 1900

Mascot of the 1941 Packard 180 Darrin Victoria

Mascot of the 1948 Packard 2 Door Club Sedan

1959 Chevrolet Corvette

1959 Ford Galaxie Skyliner Retractable Hardtop

Tail fin of the 1959 Cadillac Fleetwood Sixty Special

Malasana portraits - the madonna

Malasana portraits - husband and wife

Malasana portraits - true romance

Malasana portraits - the teacher

Malasana portraits - old friends

Malasana portraits - I sit in the square

Malasana portraits - The lady of a certain stripe


To take these shots I used a Nikon 1 V3, with a 32mm f1.2 (85mm equivalent) lens using it’s very narrow depth of focus to emphasise the bonnet mascots and the flowing coachwork lines of these marvelous vehicles.  I bought the lens for this trip, and I have to say I was impressed. I also really liked the Nikon V3, which I was about to sell, but took with me to the USA because I wanted a lightweight system for walking around at the festivals.  This is a tiny camera with a 2.7 crop factor (i.e the sensor has about 1/3rd the linear dimensions of full-frame).  Most of the shots at Dick’s were taken between ISO 800 and 1600, and they came up with rich colours and very manageable noise.

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