It’s coming up to that time of year when the blog celebrates it’s third birthday.  I would like to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of you who read my posts and pages, cheers guys & gals!  It has also been good this last year to discover even more interesting blogs.  I have recently been doing more posts that are not nature or drag racing themed, so it’s been pleasing so many of you have ‘liked’ and commented on them.  We are sitting out the second big storm to hit us in a week but rest assured when spring gets here normal service will be resumed.

So for this post we go back to last November.  We thought we had sold our property, unfortunately it all fell through more or less at the last minute.  The only good thing to come out of it was we managed to declutter and clear out 30+ years of “oh that might come in handy one day”.  When I was up in the roof loft space I came across a box of old photos, a quick rummage through and I found two packs with ‘ drag racing’ written on them.  I could have cried with joy!  I thought these were lost for ever having searched for them before without success.

Two well known Comp Altereds line up. The big v8 powered Ford Pop ‘Liquidator’ driven by Tony Merry or Pete Goddard and the Jag engined ‘Paranoia’ of Loten and Thomas

Ah the memories!  Well to be honest I really can’t remember taking most of these pictures.  They date to the early 1980’s and some can be assigned to certain meetings by maybe the car/bike name or colour, those on the ‘UK & European drag racing photo’s’ fb page have been a great help.  I scanned them onto the computer, a couple of things were obvious, 1. My photography skills in those days was somewhat lacking and 2. Some of the old prints had suffered with age and turned red!  So I asked Uncle Google if anything could be done to restore the images “Yes” he said ” You need to download one of them expensive post-processing softwares”  Hmmm, a look through the options and here’s one offering 30 days free trial!  Well it would be rude not to.

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Before and after, not a 100% but very acceptable. Ron Pudney’s ‘ Magician’ a 1968 Mercury Cougar

The magic button was fade correction and this could be altered for more or less reduction.  However the images still needed working on.  Full size on a 16″ laptop screen the 5″x 3.5″ prints were a bit grim.  They looked very ‘noisy’ possibly due to the type of paper so hit the ‘noise control’ button, better but now soft so saved the results and in Nikon View NX which I got with my first camera I cropped and sharpened the images also adding some contrast or highlight protection and straightened one or two.  Now things were looking good.

Now you see me, now you don’t! Hazze Fromme ‘Ragnarok’ nitro Funny Car

Further investigation into what this software could offer and with a bit of practice I could remove dust spots or scratches and even more impressive a photographer or two!  The images were now good enough to use on my blog in my various drag racing pages.  Some might say it’s cheating and yes it is but it is also a great way to preserve memories, plus I still have the original prints!

So did I purchase the software?  Actually no.  I made full use of the thirty day trial but at the moment all my post-pocessing needs can be taken care of in Nikon NXD.

20 thoughts on “MAGIC!

    1. Hi Deborah, thanks for the compliment. The gear I used back then was pretty basic, a Zenit slr and cheap zoom lens. No auto focus or burst shots so no surprise I only have about 100 prints when I must have taken nearly that many in a weekend! Thanks for progress and digi cameras!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Wish I could remember most of them Donna! Thing was spending the weekend at the races back then, usually without a tent, and often with a mate (Tina didn’t go ’till 83) large amounts of alcohol was consumed so things were a bit hazy.

      Liked by 2 people

  1. Congratulations on your blog’s 3rd anniversary, Brian, and on finding some of your treasured photos from yesteryear. I think the before and after differences are remarkable. I also need an excuse to get rid of the 30+ year-old boxes! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Tanja! I found clearing out the house very therapeutic yet there were things Mrs H wouldn’t let go like all our daughters baby things and a huge pile of vinyl lps even though we have only a cd player!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Well done on 3 years bloggong, Brian! I have really enjoyed your posts and your passion for your sport and butterflies. I really like the way you got the handle on the softwear to bring out the best in your old photos. How exiting to find them again! I look forward to more of your fabulous Blogs, Brian! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi Pete, big thanks. I have a few targets for this year which I missed in 2019 so watch this space as they say (weather permitting of course) It was a lot of trial and error with the software and I think anyone who likes experimenting would enjoy it. For now it’s something I don’t really need (now I’ve corrected all the old prints 😉)

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Huge thank you for reading my posts Kim. Trust me that software was all trial and error, it took several attempts on each photo to find the ‘formula’ even so some images I could not improve before the trial ran out.


  3. First off congrats on three years in the blogsphere. I’m pretty familiar with how hard it is to process the shots, get them ready for the web and then, probably the hardest part of all, adorning the shots with descriptive and entertaining words. Three years takes a serious dedication. I have no issues with processing shots and chuckle to myself whenever I read people complaining about it – all shots are manipulated before the light bursts even touch the sensor. Now to bring those early shots back as well as you did, that is a thing of beauty. I can imagine the memories those brought back. (oh, and for the record, those shots are far older than my 3 year photo queue ha)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Three years is not long compared to some (yourself for instance) but it’s amazing how many blogs I have discovered that are no longer active sometimes after only months! As long as I can get some interesting, good quality shots I’m fine with adding the dialogue.
      Yes just realised those images are a wee bit older than your waiting list. They were a fantastic find and reminded me of the crazy weekends I spent there in my younger days. I was so pleased I could bring them up to date

      Liked by 1 person

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