Dale LaFollette - Vintage Auto Photography Column
Dale LaFollette’s automotive photography has been seen in magazines, online magazines, auction catalogs and books. He spent 27 years as manager of Portland International Raceway which gave him access to the world of road racing, his favorite subject.
In 1995, worrying about inactivity in retirement, Dale started a business, Vintage Motorphoto, which specializes in rare and collectable original racing photographs taken by photographers from around the world and which continues to this day.
Dale is a voting member of the Motorsports Hall of Fame in Daytona Beach, Florida and is on the Advisory Board at the World of Speed Museum in Wilsonville, Oregon. He has also been honored with a membership in the Northwest Motorsports Hall of Fame
Some of Dale's Articles: Vintage Auto Photography Column
Favorites: Issue #1 Sept/Oct 2018
I started collecting auto racing photography over 30 years ago when I invested in a couple of Jacques Henri Lartigue photographs of my favorite subject. I had just sold a 6-page spread of my own photographs to a magazine, the check arrived, and I promptly spent it all on the Lartigues. Little did I know at the time that this would lead to what I now must call a collection.
Before you Buy, Feeling Matters!: Issue #2 Nov/Dec 2018
If you are considering collecting automobile photography....a little knowledge as to how to differentiate between a modern and a vintage photograph will go a long way. The first level of defense against over-spending is understanding the language. I have seen vintage photographs called period, historical, and original, while many times the seller has no real idea of the age or origin of the image.
Even galleries and museums have a hard time accurately describing what the term “vintage” means when applied to photography. I have read long dissertations on the subject by very knowledgeable people that come to the conclusion that if a photograph is printed by the photographer on or about the time that is was taken, then it is vintage. The word “about” is the problem.
Desire vs Availability: Issue #3 Jan/Feb 2019
When starting to collect original vintage automotive photography it can be quite rewarding to focus your efforts on a specific driver, or car, or even a favorite event. But, it will make the collection harder to assemble, as the availability of images almost never conforms to your desires. That said, great images of Lewis Hamilton and his Mercedes-Benz grand prix car are currently available of course, but go back in time seventy years and it is a completely different story. So, I would suggest that if older images are what you would like to collect, then widen your scope,
Oh Snap! Issue #4 Mar/Apr 2019
It may have never crossed your mind to look at snapshots as a collectable, and you would be correct, 99% of the time. But… there are times that snapshots, whether taken by a seasoned photographer or just a lucky photographic happenstance, are worthy of your attention.
Looking for and finding that elusive 1% in antique stores, etc. will drive you to tears so leave that to others. There are swap-meet vendors in Europe, and online vendors who specialize in auto photography, and occasionally they will have an outstanding snapshot, many at reasonable prices as most early snapshots are small to very small so they are priced accordingly.
Photo Postcards Issue #5 May/June 2019
As a photography collector, you may have overlooked the collectibility of postcards, just as I did for several years. But many postcards are actually 3½”x 5”photos, and are worth a second look as you seek to acquire automotive images.
You probably have gone to antique shows and seen large tables full of postcards displayed by sellers that would be considered “generalists;” in other words, they have everything that could be considered a postcard.
Land Speed Records Issue #6 July/Aug 2019
When I first began writing these columns I knew that at some point I had to write about photographs of land speed record cars as they have been a passion of mine for many years, but I ran into a slight problem, once I started looking through my collection I found there were enough images for at least four columns! So, I had to force myself to pick my absolute favorites to write about. Campbell, Eyston, Cobb and Segrave didn’t make the cut, sorry! Maybe in a future column
Saving the True Environment of Racing Issue #16 May/Jun 2021
Race programs and newspapers use tight head shots of racing drivers, but those only show you what the person looks like. Environmental portraiture surrounds people with their activities and their passions, providing deeper insight into who they really are. I’ve chosen a few from my personal collection of vintage photographs as examples to show you what I mean.