Brazzers: Nick Chows Nissan GTR Bangzilla POV

I’ve been extremely behind on posts lately – it’s been hectic and the true countdown is on before the wedding. There’s about 3 weeks left and it still seems like there is so much to do! It’s difficult to find time during the evenings now because most of that is taken up by more planning. I’m now writing this on my lunch break at work because that’s the only down time I have during the day it seems. Oh well… Let’s see if I can pound this out in the last 15 minutes I have left.

I was super stoked to finally shoot Nick’s GTR – I know when he picked it up he said it was going to be a slow build and that was only about a year ago. Since then, he’s added a few more goodies – and if anyone knows anything about GTR parts, you’d know they don’t come cheap. The GTR in and of itself is a automotive masterpiece and it’s hard not to appreciate something of this caliber and class whether you like Japanese cars or Nissan or cars at all. Nick’s cars have always had a certain appeal to them – done up with precision and nothing but the best parts and the best workmanship that he could get his hands on. It’s hard not to be influenced by his path to building great cars. In fact – lots of the cars (including mine) that you see on my blog have in one way or another had Nick somehow get his touch on the build. One example is Danny’s STI hatch that you may recall or even his previous car – the VIP Junction Produce Lexus GS – a car and style that really was quite a different feel to the automotive culture here at the time and is now spreading like a wildfire.

Nick has been in the game quite a while and has a wealth of knowledge that any one could appreciate – whether you’re starting out or have been in the game as long or longer than he has. A funny side story – when I had sold the STI, I was set on getting a 370Z – which he swayed me away from and into an LS460L – which btw I had no regrets owning. After the LS460L, I was once again determined to get into a 370Z and a second time I was swayed away from it and into an FRS I went. During this shoot we briefly discussed the funny story of how this all unfolded and he said “I will forever prevent you from getting into a 370Z”. I’m not gonna lie – I STILL want a 370Z but I don’t think it will appeal to me as much once I own it. Who knows, maybe my next car will be a 370Z if I don’t tell him…

Anyway – back to the GTR. Nick was extremely patient looking for a GTR and he had been looking for the perfect white one even before I owned the LS. We chatted back and forth and sometime in between, he finally found one and in great condition as well… And so the story begins…

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Starting off with the rolling shot!

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The GTR looks great from every angle. It’s one of those cars that you can just walk around and just love every curve. I know that sounds creepy, but anyone who loves their cars knows they can watch their car all day if they could…

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Sometime last year, Nick was able to cop a set of Advan GT’s in gloss black. A popular wheel for GTR’s and rightfully so – they look right at home.

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Even the headlights are fancy

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Not too long ago, Nick fitted a T1R exhaust to help give the GTR some more rumble.

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On the way to the next location, I rode shotgun and he took it for a quick rip. I’ll admit that in the extremely short time that I sat in it and the one quick pull, it felt faster and stronger than the Ferrari F430 I drove around the track in Las Vegas. There was no comparison… Of course, two different cars but just such a big difference in terms of that feel of power.

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Shot of the rear set up. I believe the rear tires were 305… Love it.

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Them hips.

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lol Derrick snapped a shot of me moving the car into the right locations.

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Shot of his front set up.

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Took a shot from inside of JC’s car. Punit and Derrick bonding over their love for Integras…

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Rolling out

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Another shot of the tips.

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Close up of the Advan GT’s and engraved spoke.

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Beautiful Varis lip in all it’s glory. Nick actually ordered this the same time I ordered my SSR’s for the LS460 and he didn’t receive it until way after my wheels landed… Quality takes time. After my Varis STI, I’ve had a soft spot for all things Varis. I can’t wait to get started on the FRS with it either…

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Awesome JDM Nismo cluster as well. It currently reads all in Japanese but it’s a very nice addition to the cockpit.

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Of course, Nick hasn’t forgotten his Honda roots either with Asimo hanging from his rear view.

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On the prowl

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Pull up to this at a red light. PS – we smoked it in JC’s CT200h. No biggie…

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I was ragging on Nick about black wheels on a white car – that’s the worst combination to shoot because like I’ve mentioned before – you either over expose the car and you get a shot of the wheels or you underexpose the car and see nothing but black holes where the wheels should be. I was lucky enough though that I got enough light – even though it was overcast – to light both up properly. The one downside to shooting in overcast is that when you have simple coloured cars – they don’t pop as much as they should.

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One of my favourite shots from the shoot is this from up top. I absolutely love the look of the GTR (as well as many other cars, in fact) from up top. It’s not an angle you see too often).

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And voila! Another one in the bag. I wasn’t too stoked on the overcast that day because I feel like this car can really shine when it’s sunny out. My plan is to grab Nick again when we have another awesome day and do this more justice.

Jackie Tong’s Acura NSX Edits

Just to take a little breather from all of the features and stuff, I thought I’d post up an edit again like I used to. Been getting a few questions on how long it takes to edit with all of these shoots that I’ve been doing. Honestly, it can take anywhere from an hour to several hours, depending on how many shots I took or the type of look I’m going for. One of the biggest reasons for long editing times – as those of you that shoot and edit may know – is shooting the car in a distracting scene. For example, a shot in the downtown area will often include other cars, light posts, signs and other things that you really don’t want in the picture. So you end up cloning them out of the picture to put more emphasis on the car rather than distracting elements.

Other times, it’s really just making the car pop and making sure everything is aligned. For the shots of Jackie’s NSX, we shot in a fairly secluded area where there weren’t too many things that needed to be taken out. The red also does a good job of standing out so little has to be done…

The before shot – straight off the camera. No editing done except for resize and watermark. The original picture itself is already good – and most of that is credited to all of the colours working well together. This is one of the reasons I love shooting coloured cars – it’s easy to make them pop. Black and white are particularly more difficult. The only things that need to be “fixed” is that the picture is off level just a tad and there’s a utility box over to the left that needs to be cloned out.

After processing. Since it’s Fall, I wanted to give it a warm touch and the leaves and grass were already starting to turn orange/yellow, so I thought I’d help expedite it. I changed the hue of the grass and trees to a more yellow and orange colour and left the darker greens. I darkened the skies a bit and removed the baby blue hue to keep the colours warm. I cloned out the utility box to the left and rotated the picture 0.3 degrees counter clockwise and re-cropped it to level everything out. Lastly – I did some dodging and burning on parts of the NSX to make it pop just a bit more. I spent more time on the wheels in particular – getting that graphite to pop more, got the brake discs to shine through and removed the “rust” orange colour to them. I lightened up the front bumper and the side of the car a little to make the red pop.

All in all, I generally like the warm tone over the cooler tone for most pictures – it gives it a more natural feel, especially for a scene and car like this. This process didn’t take me too long, but in other photos that have poles and wires in the back or rock chips and cracked bumpers on the cars, it can take up anywhere from half an hour to an hour to fix it all. All in a days work, I suppose!

Sunday Funday: Jackie Tong’s Acura NSeX

Yesterday was another great day of shooting and this time, it was none other than Jackie Tong’s Acura NSX – The Japanese Ferrari. The NSX may be old, but the lines and design still make today’s automobile designs look dated. This is the reason the NSX will be one of the most legendary cars ever built and I’m personally glad that I got the opportunity to shoot one.

On a more personal level – Jackie has done incredibly well for himself over the past few years. Since the day I met him, he was driving a slammed Integra on gold Advan RG’s and was getting around that way. Up until just last year, he opened up his own shop – Zero Limit Automotive and now drives the wicked machine you’re about to see here and a gangster off-road 4Runner on the side. I guess you could say Drake’s song can apply to Jackie here…

If you haven’t hit up Zero Limit for your car related needs, you need to do so! Jackie does it all – from installing and setting up air suspension (my LS) to your regular alignments and oil changes. Jackie has worked on a lot of our cars and all of us has ended up leaving happy so you know he’s doing it right. Let’s get to the pics!

Please note: Lots of rollers because the NSX looks amazing while rolling.

Looks great on the dark gun metallic Advan RS’s – a fairly new upgrade from his previous set: Advan RG-D’s in gold.

The red on the NSX also shines nicely and hits your eye with a bunch of different shades in different lights.

This was probably my favourite shot from the shoot – looks great in the Fall setting.

Perfect fitment out back and a nice shot of his downforce side skirts.

Another roller down low.

Excellent lines from the rear quarter as well.

Head on shot – I don’t think there is a single angle of the NSX that doesn’t look good. I know I’ve mentioned before that some cars just don’t look “great” at some angles. The NSX doesn’t have that problem..

For some reason, this shot just gave me a “Nurburgring” feel.

Rich and JC also came along for the shoot. Good company as always.

Super meaty in the rear. Jackie moved up from 245 (I believe?) to a 285 in the rear. An awesome size on the NSX body.

Shot of the NSX power house.

Uneven ground on the front driver tire, but it was too good of a shot to leave alone.

A carbon wing out back. Nice and subtle – doesn’t look out of place at all. Usually carbon wings (not GT) look odd when they’re just replaced or added. It fits right at home on Jackie’s NSX.

And the last shot of the day!

Throwback: Jackie Law’s Honda S2000 – Part 3 of 3

Part III! (And also my 400th post! Wow time flies) This brings us to August 2011. At this point in time, Jackie was on an aggressive set of Advan RG’s in gold, and it was a different look and colour altogether from what he used to run. His point still hadn’t changed much from when he had the candy blue TE37’s, and he had yet to undergo the colour change to Moonrock.

However, at the same time – he had also recently picked up another S2000 as a daily when he didn’t want to drive his main S2000. It was fairly stock – lowered, lip, stock wheels but good enough since it was an S2000 for a daily – far better than most of the dailies we use. He wanted a shoot of both of them together and like usual – I agreed and we went on our way.

You may or may not know that I’m not a fan of shooting multiple cars, especially anything more than 2 – simply because it’s difficult (for me, anyway) to position and get it the way I want. His shoot – like I mentioned in the previous post – turned out great like always. The subject is a big part of the picture and for me, if it’s not something that I really love then it’s difficult for me to be inspired enough to shoot it. I’m picky.

Lets get to it

Both of them side by side.

Who could hate that face?

Keep in mind, I left most of these pics unedited. In this shot, you can see Aldrich’s WRX, Ryan’s 1M and Jeevs’ A4.

I loved this shot because the daily looks almost lower than his main.

Of course – rolling shots!!! And dual too! Barb drove his daily with these rollers.

JLAW in the flesh

Barb top down cruising in the daily

And the both of them. Both of them look so good together.

Last one to end this series! Hope you enjoyed!