**** NOTE: My November 2012 posts have been lost due to system issues. They are: Good Guys Show, Nostalgia Drags and my Day of the Dead shoot...hoping to recover them. Sorry if you came here to specifically see those posts.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

!Viva Las Vegas Rockabilly Weekend #14!

 Part 1

Click on photo to enlarge.
I had been waiting for over a year for this, my first VLV. I had seen it in magazines like "Car Kulture DeLuxe" and "Ol' Skool Rodz" and on websites like MyRideIsMe.com (a site I contribute photos to). These are my favorite kind of cars, pre-'63 Hot Rods, "Rat Rods" and Kustoms in the style of that era. And of course in all the coverage I saw there were tattooed beauties draped and posed amongst and over cars. VLV is a monster Kustom Kulture event and a fantastic time. You can go to Vivalasvegas.net to see all the bands, art vendors, burlesque and other entertainment that rocked Vegas last weekend....I'm moving on with the imagery.

I met Mike Bello and his wife, Adela early Friday, my first day there. Mike's shop, Bello's Rods & Customs, was featured in "Ol' Skool Rodz"some time ago and I knew of him from that issue. Mike is the real deal. He's a purist when it comes to building cars and as the next few photos illustrate....an artist.

Scraping the pavement as Mike's "Scrapers" car club tends to do.
Mike approached me and started up a conversation asking me what it is about cars I liked to photograph and a lengthy and educational (for me) discussion began. After a little while he offered me what turned out to be my breakfast, a Tecate. Over the course of a couple beers we talked cars, tradition, some history on VLV and what the future looks like for car building---Mike is the expert on all counts and it was an honor to hang out with him. 
Above are some shots of Adela's custom '53 (my vote for best custom of the show) and below is Mike's hot rod '31 to the right of it. Both cars built by Mike and his crew at his San Diego shop. 
Thanks again for the great conversation and breakfast, Mike!
Click on photos to enlarge.
This sweet young lady (who's name escapes me, but her smile I'd recognize at VLV #40) and her friends exhibited the fun vibe that is Viva Las Vegas. They were taking photos of each other and I had to get in on the action with my camera and asked for a couple shots.
Actually, that De Soto has a pretty nice smile too.
 (Ladies, due to space, the group shot will be in the VLV galleries very soon.)
Now here's some pros at work. The photographer shoots for my favorite car kulture magazines.
Now here, there's an amateur at work. You can't see him but I'm behind the camera. She was kind enough to let me take a shot.

I kind of bumped into Micheline Pitt and would have been happy to do so again.
I knew of her from car kulture magazines. Aside from a famous pin-up, she's a model that was apparently kicked off of the reality show "America's Next Top Model" for having tattoos. She's also a make-up artist to celebrities among other fashion/modeling related ventures. She was happy to stop for a photo. I should have taken a few more. 

How about those Mexican blanket designed flames on the roof!!
Mercury rising...

Click to enlarge this photo (all photos) for more details.

It was great to see the legendary customs king, Bo Huff at the show. Hell of a cool guy.

Beautiful lady and a wild truck...see more of both in the upcoming gallery and VLV part 2, coming soon.

 Cool shift knob.

This pin-up was just relaxing...

Okay here's the final image of Viva Las Vegas Rockabilly Weekend #14 Part 1.
Part 2 will be in a few days. Until then you can wonder what these ladies' smiles look like.
***The Viva Las Vegas gallery folders will not be posted until after Part 2....and possibly 3.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Friday's Image:

"My Other Ride's A Harley"

(Posted a little early for reasons that will benefit the world...soon to be revealed)

Sunday, April 17, 2011

LOWRIDERS: The Fort McDowell Show April 16, 2011 ~~ Part 1

Click on photos for larger image.
There were so many amazing rides and incredible paint I couldn't put them all in one posting. 
My one major regret is that I was all the way on the other side of the show-site grabbing a beer (it was in the mid-90's and the event took place on the pavement. This much needed beer was after two hours of shooting) when the previously delayed car-hop event was about to take place. I got there quenched, but too late. I ended up behind the crowd and couldn't see anything. However, I did get some video with a Flip camera I had to hold way up over my head. I'll have to see if I can post it at some point. Anyway, here's some images I came away with.

Old School...

This lowrider bike is a thing of beauty.
This bike was pretty amazing too...

This hood is the only hop photo I was able to get...
I'll be posting more lowrider photos from this event and add all of them (and others) to the Lowrider gallery in a couple of weeks....next week will be something different. Also, the big Viva Las Vegas Rockabilly Weekender #14 is just around the corner --- keep a look out for my take on that show of shows!