The Black Swan @ Driven 2016: Different Perspectives

A few different shots that I found floating around the interwebz and some shots that were emailed to me (Thank you!). Just wanted to post them up to give a quick shout out for them. I love seeing shots of my car from a perspective than my own – it’s always refreshing to see!

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Photo from Vin Hwang – shows the lines of the Arise kit well.

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A photo from Brandon @ the flying penguin. Love how wet the black looks in this photo. Great coverage on his blog as well!

Check it out here https://theflyingpenguin.ca/2016/05/12/driven-to-perfection/

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A few shots from Bill at Threetwenty. He’s captured a rare moment when my reverse LED’s are on… LOL a sight that I rarely even see myself! haha

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One more from Bill.

Check out his coverage here: https://officialthreetwenty.com/

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Great shot from Lawrence Tse. Again, that black thoughhhh

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And one more from Ken Au coming all the way from Winnipeg. A very different angle from the rest – and I love it! Another great shot to show the lines of the Arise bumper.

Thanks again to those that emailed me the pics! I love them!

A Day In The Mountains…

… Kind of. It was as good as it was going to get without having to drive out to the actual mountains lol.

This is just a continuation of my last post with my own car. When we went out on Saturday, we did kind of a double shoot. We were in such a good location that it would be a shame if Alicia and I didn’t get pictures of our own cars. We were also both fortunate enough to trade our lenses for a bit and get a different take on photos. She had always wanted the 135 F2.0L which I had, and I have always wanted the 85 F1.2L which she had. Both extremely good lenses with different capabilities and it really helps you learn different angles and perspectives. But enough nerding out… I’ll just post these here until I find the motivation and time to go and shoot again.

To be honest, shooting is the last thing on my mind these days. Back in the day, I used to want to go out and shoot no matter what the weather, the time of day, or the type of car – I would do it all. It’s a lot of time and effort and it’s definitely helped me grow into a better photographer and each and every car that I’ve shot has helped me learn new things. At this moment in time, I look at my camera and I barely even want to pick it up. I’m not sure what it is – maybe I need inspiration or a car that just totally sets the stage for an epic photoshoot. Nothing has come my way lately – maybe I’ve shot most of them already? Maybe I’m done with photography? Probably an unlikely case… One day I’ll be inspired again.

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This spot was particularly cool with the Rockies in the back. The lighting that day was perfect – slight overcast and there was just enough cloud. Check that background…

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Loved this shot with Alicia’s 85mm. So sharp.

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Another one with the Calgary skyline in the back. Not as awe-inspiring, but still a nice view.

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Still my favourite mod to the car to this date – JDM/GT86 headlights. Say no to Winjet.

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Vertex with optional gold horn button.

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TRD x Craft Square

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Here’s another shot with the 85mm. The great thing about this lens is that you can get closer to the car with a lot more bokeh or shallow depth of field. The 135 can do something similar, but it’s just not as crisp.

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And then some grass shots. Although we wanted it to be more green, I think the yellow/orange hues helped this shoot.

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Tried to take a cool photo. Not sure if I ended up with a cool photo. lol

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Noir gang.

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One last one!

The Day The Swan Was Born

This is an overdue post – but I wanted to get the auto show stuff out of the way before it was older news than it already was by the time I posted it.

I dropped the parts off with Nick Prah two weeks ago so he could prep and paint them, then I dropped the car off to him last week and finally picked it up on Sunday. I had been anxious all week to get it back because this has been in the works for over a year now. I knew what kit I wanted and I knew how I wanted it to all come together but I had to play the waiting game – like most of you know.

I did a lot of brainstorming, playing around in photoshop and scouring the internet for ideas before I came to a decision on how I wanted the car to look. I’ve mentioned it before, but having a popular platform means that it’s quite difficult to be unique. There are a lot parts floating around and there will always be a handful of popular pieces that get done over and over. I have nothing against this – but I really wanted to stay away from the “cookie cutter” look as much as I could. Of course, the only way to truly do so is to do custom work. With that off my list – the next best thing is to try and put pieces together that you didn’t generally see all the time, and that doesn’t happen easily. The key things that I wanted (and still want) my build to have was quality parts. I told myself that I wouldn’t cut corners to save a few bucks and if it took me another year to get something better – I would wait the year.

Anyway, going back and forth between kits like the oh-so-popular Rocket Bunny and the increasingly popular Varis – I didn’t know how else I could create something that I loved enough that didn’t look like the vision of someone else. Again, I stress that it’s not because I’m trying to be the cool kid by going off the road less traveled… I just wanted to build a car that I could love driving and looking at without being reminded that my car “kind of looks like that guys car on the internet”. A lot of my inspiration did in fact come from all these guys from the internet – it helped me decide what I liked, and what I really didn’t like. At the end of the day, this is the result and I am 110% satisfied with the result thus far… And I’m stoked as hell to share pics and drive the hell out of it this year!

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When we rolled up to Nick’s place, it was sitting out front with the sun beaming on it… Right here as you see. The paint shining like it just rolled off the showroom floor.

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I seriously could not have asked Nick to do a better job on this. The paint is wet and matches OEM right down to the last metallic sparkle that Raven Black has. No photoshop on the finish – it’s just straight talent and sick workmanship from Nick.

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Right after the auto show, I met up with Ricky to take some quick pictures because he had been anxious to see it as well. I snapped some behind the scene shots as well as took my own as you saw in a previous post…

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We originally wanted to try rig shots but it was way too bright to attempt it. Instead, we just messed around with the GoPro and took some stills.

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Look at the finish of that paint!!

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This was not meant to be an official photoshoot. I just wanted to take some quick snaps to show off.

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The wingggggggg

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TRD x Craft Square

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It’s now aggressive and clean looking – the exact look I was aiming for. Everything balances out so well.

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A rear shot. The only thing I was not able to acquire this year was a diffuser. I was a little late to the bandwagon before our dollar plummeted and I wasn’t about to pay double for a piece…

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Some shots from Ricky’s camera that I edited quickly for him.

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I love when other people take pictures of my car – not because I’m conceited or anything – but because I love to see my car in a different perspective. There are always angles that I would never think of and it’s refreshing to see. Being the photographer most of the time means no one shoots my car LOL

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Like this angle. Obnoxious as f*** but cool as hell.

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As if the wing wasn’t big enough haha

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Shots of the fin and mirrors

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OEM is best. Just say no to Winjet.

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A shot from the passenger seat…

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Later that night, we met up again at that same spot and decided to try rig shots again. Here Ricky is setting up while Diana sits in the car. Being preggo and standing outside in the cold isn’t the best combination when you always have to pee, I guess…

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Suction cups on… Boom on…

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Diana looking bored as hell. Meanwhile, I’m geeking out cause this is cool as shit hahaha

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Ricky finishing up the set up…

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The set up. So rad! This is the first time I’ve had a rig shot so I’m just standing there amazing the whole time haha

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Here’s a few shots that turned out that night. We were kind of rushed since the sun was leaving quick and it was getting cold.

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Here’s one dubbed “Ghost Rider”. LOL I was pushing from the other side.

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The next day we decided to try one more time LOL… Setting up again…

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This time set up on the roof.

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It was significantly colder yesterday and we were on top of this big as hill, so it was windy as hell. Tough to stay steady when your hands are shaking and the boom is blowing with the wind.

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A shot of the set up…

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Ending it here because this was the last set up we tried. I don’t have the pictures from this attempt yet, but once I do I’ll post them for sure!

We’re thinking of trying again next weekend provided the weather cooperates with us. Stay tuned!

Out of Hibernation

She’s bacccccccccckkkkkk!!!!!

Finally – after a long awaited 6 months, the car is put back together and complete. It’s been a grueling wait this winter but the time has finally come. It all started in August when I placed the order for the Voltex wing. September was when I ordered the Arise kit and they just kind of sat in the house until it was time to put them on.

I want to give a huge thanks to Nick Prah who is responsible for the paint and install of the kit. I’ve seen his work through other forms and it is impeccable. He is a perfectionist and a detailed craftsman, and it shows through his work. The Raven black colour that the FRS comes in has a slight metallic blue hint to it and Nick recreated that to make it look like it came from factory. In fact, it’s better than factory. I’m scared to drive it because I worry about ruining the finish he produced but it’s too good to leave sitting in the garage LOL. Anyway, I’ll detail it all in another post… I just couldn’t wait to post these up to share.

Ricky and I went out in the afternoon yesterday to try and take some pics but it ended up being too bright to get nice shots, so we met up in the evening again to do some rig shots. I’ll have those up when Ricky gets editing on them… I only edited two last night just so I could have one to post. I’ll have a bunch more in the coming days.

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This was the one at sunset. I am absolutely in love with this car all over again. The stance and aggressiveness is just perfect to me.

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One more shot with the wheels…