After shooting sunrise at Clingman's Dome and the Roaring Fork Trail, I headed back to the hotel to find that the neighboring hotel was having an antique tractor show. There was no admission and I already had my camera out, so why not stop?
I've seen these shows around before, but never stopped to check one out up close. There were several different kinds of tractors there. First I came across regular old John Deere lawn tractors, but not your ordinary grass cutter. These had racing tires, chrome rims and young men out there making engine modifications to them on the spot.
Then there was fancy, sparkly, shiny, completely restored tractors. Some of those were showroom quality and some the owners had put their own spin into when restoring them. Some were made to resemble hot rod cars and some looked like old rat rods. Then there was my favorite...the well worn, workhorse, rusty tractors.
I walked around the show capturing images with my Fuji X-E1 and 18-55mm lens. All of the shots were hand held and later processed in Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop.
Farmall tractors were there in full force. They probably outnumbered the other manufacturers by 4 to 1. I imagine that has a lot to do with how long they've been around.
This first image is one of the rusty Farmall Tractors that I decided to process in black and white. I like how it turned out in color, but I like the b&w even better. It was very bright out, so I shot at my lowest native ISO setting throughout the show, ISO 200. I also went the entire show shooting on the aperture of F/8. I was able to alter my depth of field without changing the aperture by getting physically closer to some of them. Then I also used the camera's Macro mode a few times that helped create a more shallow depth of field.
This next image I framed up of just the engine compartment. I liked all the dirt, grime and small details. I made it a point to include as much of that kind of stuff as I could, as I knew it would work great for the way I wanted to process it. I processed this with the help of the new Topaz Clarity Plugin for Photoshop.
Finally, I got this shot of an old International Harvester. It was positioned so that an old, quilt barn was behind it off in the distance. I knew I wanted to somehow make it a part of the image, so I walked around the tractor looking for a composition that would allow me to include it while keeping the other clutter out of the background. Here's what I came up with.
If you live in the south, it's not if, but when you run up on one of these types of shows. I suggest next time you stop and check it out. They can offer some interesting images if you look for them.