I’m not sure about this picture, I’ll be interested in any comments. I may post one in color, too, since this was an amazing purple color.

But it just struck me as such an unusual design. A big slab of steel and chrome that somehow manages to look lighthearted – – a pretty neat trick, at 3,420 pounds.

1950's, Automobiles, Chevrolet, photography

’57 Chevy Bel Air


10 thoughts on “’57 Chevy Bel Air

  1. It’s a nice photo, and it does make that chrome really shine. Still, I can’t get past the feeling that any ’57 Chevy photo ought to show the whole car. It’s such an icon — at least, for plenty of people in my generation. For a time, there was a ’57 Chevy truck in my life, but that was as close as I ever got to having one of these gems.

    I couldn’t remember ever seeing a purple one. I looked up the original colors, and that explained that. There wasn’t one when they were introduced. I saw some photos of deep purple ones, though, and they are splendid.

    • Thanks, appreciate the comment. I kept looking at this photo and re-cropping it, because it seemed interesting, but at the end of the day, it’s not likable. I’ll see if I have a decent photo of the whole car. I was fixating on all the fancy chrome and the evolution to tail fins. And when you’ve grown up with Prius and Cooper Minis, some of these Detroit behemoths strike you more like Boston Whalers on Wheels, or downsized pastel aircraft carriers. Turns out, photographing cars is a lot more challenging than I expected. The dashboards were also really fascinating –
      – complicated and cool, a whole lot of knobs and dials sometimes.

  2. Jan Theobald says:

    I like the shot. Your photos are starting to look professional because you are seeing interesting perspectives instead of the whole big picture. It would be fun to also see this one in color but I like the black-and-white.

  3. I like the detail, as an automotive historian, it’s the year to year detail changes that I find interesting. But, I do think that the candy colours of the period are an important part of the story – autos becoming more toy like and less workmanlike, expressing the optimism of that era between the end of WWII and the failure of government epitomised by Vietnam and Nixon.

    • OK, an automotive historian! I hope I’ve scattered enough disclaimers around – – I know very little about cars, and found out that photographing them is not as easy as I’d have thought! Yes, there were a lot of candy colors around, baby blues, etc. often on vehicles with huge V-8’s.
      We have an annual car show in my village, originally to showcase GMC and Chevrolet “woodies” – – the Waterloo Wagon Company (one of the partners was from Yorkshire) made horse-drawn carriages, and then transitioned for a time to making the wooden bodies for Suburbans, etc.
      Every year, I really enjoy the show, and am amazed how many classic cars are stashed in garages and barns in this small, not-very-prosperous county.

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