Yellow Bird


Here’s a car that has appeared twice in two years at the VHRA show – 2015 and 2016. On both occasions it was an outside visitor rather than a floor display. This has advantages and disadvantages for me.

The good side of an outside car is that it is free – well, free if you can get ourself to the gardens in Melbourne and if you start out from Perth in Western Australia that ain’t free. But it is money well spent for a sight of cars like this. There is also the chance with the outside ones that the crowd will be a little thinner and you can outwit them for a clear shot.

mel2014 204 copy

Then too, there is the matter of white balance. Always a delicate subject  with digital photographers, it can be problematical inside the exhibition building. The lighting is good, and there are big windows as well, but the mixture of overhead and accent lights can sometimes be wildly disparate and it yields some strange results. Still never as horribly bad as the Perth Plastic Bubble at Burswood, but odd enough. I have learned to flash it well and then to just accept the result as a record of the event. If i ever wanted a colour reference for any of the cars inside I would wait until they left and were out in clear daylight.

On the other hand – the disadvantage of outside is that you can get caught in the rain. Dull overhead light is good for colour saturation but wet everything is a discouragement. Good thing for me that hot rodders are resilient and waterproof.


The Yellow Bird is a Ford Model A Coupe that has been lowered but still retains the fenders intact. You can almost think you are seeing a restored veteran until you look carefully at the radiator cowl and at the proportions of the fenders, the windows, and the top. Then it twigs. The sign on the back confirms your suspicions.


Motor? Yes, it has one. That’s how it got from home to the gardens. What sort is a mystery as the engine compartment covers were firmly closed. You may use you imagination to fill in the engine bay…I am betting on a Chrysler turbo from the 1960’s with a flux capacitor.


I will also have to wait until 2017 to see if it returns and I can get a good picture of the interior.



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