Peoples Choice Judging Guide To Car Shows - A guide for judging and showing your car
Is Your Car A Winner?
Peoples Choice Judging Guide To Car Shows
-A guide for judging and showing your car-
If this is your first car show, or you are a seasoned car enthusiast, the information contained here will be helpful to ensure that you do not overlook anything at your next show. For the car owner, this material will help you get the extra point needed to beat the car next to you, and if you are judging who should get the extra point. Depending upon the type of car show there are a variety of things to consider. Car shows fall into many different categories depending upon the show promoter and any themes. General car shows are open to any and all makes of cars as well as years. These shows can be quite difficult to judge since there are so many variables to be considered. This guide will provide you with some helpful information.
The guidelines that are presented here will give you insight into judging or participating in any of these different shows. The display portion of this book is for all car classes from daily drivers to trailer queens and everything in between.
One of the most challenging parts of going to a car show is appreciating the cars that are not your favorites, and stopping to take a look, versus just walking by with a passing glance. The designers of automobiles are artists. From the initial idea to final production, the creativity, ingenuity and vision required are all characteristics of an artist. Close your eyes and think of the last automobile that really stuck in your mind for its elegance, style, and beauty. It seems that no matter what age you are chances are you think of an automobile from your impressionable teen years. The intent of this section is to open your mind and think about the elegance, grace, and styling of cars before you were born, to the present. If you have not been to one of the large automobile shows that cover all classes of vehicles and years you must do this.
It seems that many automotive enthusiasts have at one time encountered a similar dilemma. There are the Mustang specific clubs, the Ford Model A clubs, even the Orange Colored Car club. Everyone has their primary interests, but if you look beyond this, you can see the elegance, style, and beauty that was finely crafted by the automotive artists. Imagine looking through the viewfinder on a camera as you focus on composing the perfect image. With your naked eye, many of the details may not initially jump out. However, when you see the image as the camera does, you notice the shadows, the lighting, and the elements of the vehicle that appear to be magnified and stand out. This focusing forces you to not only look at the complete vehicle, but down to the individual details that make it up. These details are the core elements that the artist creates. Like each stroke of the brush, each curve in the chrome makes up the masterpiece
Use of a fantasy art picture adds that personal touch. The owner of one car I did wanted to add a bit of color to their racing theme garage. There were many diamond plate toolboxes and cabinets against a white wall. His white car would have been lost, so to make it stand out on the picture, the coordinated diamond plate was used as a background, and eye-catching flames were added to give it some color.
First impression weighs heavily on your judging decision, but how do you decide between your top two choices for who should get that extra point and be in first place? Remember that we are assuming that these are high quality show cars, so you must be picky to help break a tie. The approach is to start with your first impression of how the owner is presenting the car. The next step is to inspect the exterior, and then focus on specific areas of the exterior such as the engine and trunk compartments, the underside, and finally the interior. The handy checklist at the end will guide you down the path.
The main question is what makes one display stand out from all of the others? At a car show, how a vehicle is displayed and presented is the key to differentiate one from another, and attract more attention. The owners’ vehicle is an extension of their personality, and there are many steps that they take to personalize it. Custom art is one way to accomplish this. Something that is just off the shelve or out of a catalog is generic, and anyone can just buy that. The key is to differentiate your car from the others starts with the display, and art plays a significant factor here.
As you approach the vehicle (or yours once it is set up), you need to size up the display and notice what stands out first. A few of the items to look for are:
· Has the owner personalize the display with a show board, custom pictures, artwork or other unique items?
· If they have a show board (which they should) does it meet the following:
- Is it informative?
- Any unique pictures or artwork to make it even more personal?
- Is there the right balance of information and pictures (not cluttered)?
- Easy to read from 10 feet away?
- Is there any memorabilia, such as the original advertisements, manufacturer pricing windows stickers, literature when it was introduced or other nostalgic items?
A well-organized display with out any clutter is key. Examples are provided that provide information on achieving this.
You need to think of a show board as a promotional advertisement for your vehicle. As you drive down the highway and see billboard advertisements think about what captures your attention and what you remember after. You must use a similar marketing approach with promoting your car. Spectators walk through a car show of 40, 100 and even 500 plus cars, but will they remember your car? A well-done show board is one way to do this. You have a wide target audience and your show board must stick in the mind of the person who loves your car style, the one who is a general enthusiast, and the person who is too young to remember when the car was new. From our experience there are a few key points to consider when designing your show board and working with the show board designer. Two of the basic ones are:
1. Be creative. If you want your show board to stand out, it must be different!
2. If your car is like a rolling classic piece of art, such as the Ford Fairlane 500 mentioned, you might want a more formal and classic museum like look. This look would use things like classic photography and perhaps a formal frame like border. The example background below with the scroll, gives the feeling of an announcer reading from it.
Unique artwork that personalizes the vehicles is one-step closer to getting more attention. The owner of one burgundy Mercury had used complementary paint colors that add to that subtle effect of flames along the side without them jumping off the car as would vibrant red/yellow flames. This picture was then used as part of the display to add a personal touch. For those that knew the owner well, they know he was born in the year of the white tiger and if they didn’t after a discussion with him they knew. The subtle additions are what can make a display stand out.
Each and every owner has a preference on how they wish to modify or maintain their car. One extreme in engine bay display is a completely detailed engine compartment with additional lighting to enhance the key details. Why spend hours and hours, as well as many dollars and not be able to see the results. Indoor shows often do not have sufficient lighting along with shadows. In this example the hood is on stands along with the air cleaner to provide added viewing.
No matter how old or how new the vehicle is, there is always a way to personalize it. I use an example of a 1995 Impala where the original factory engine was mostly black, and most of the engine could not be seen with all of the rubber and hoses. This car is a great example showing what chrome and a bit of added color can do to catch the spectators and judges eye.
By now you realize that the proof is in the attention to the details and how a vehicle is displayed. Presentation is the key to differentiate one vehicle from another, and attract more attention to yours. Your vehicle is an extension of your personality, and there are many steps that you can take to personalize it and by utilizing the tips here you are one step closer
So to get started, take what you have learned here, find a local car show and most of all just have fun.
For additional information on how to make an outstanding display and have it stand out even more, take a look at the additional sections and the entire E-Book at Palmieri Concepts at www.PalmieriConcepts.com. There are many examples that have helped enthusiasts like you become the talk of the show and hold that trophy high.
By Anthony P. Palmieri