I have been painting since I was 13. I think that's 27 years...unreal. My neighbors kids are all compelled to call me Mr. now. Scary. I can give you some free advice about paint. Generally speaking, the big paint companies top of the line paints are the most expensive. They are the most expensive because the pigments and additives are more expensive. I don't paint a lot of high end late models anymore but occasionally I'll shoot a Lexus or Cadillac. Where the more expensive base colors come in is that the pearls and metallics and pigments are more apt to match the factory colors. This does not mean the paint is any better than another high end paint or even the mid grade paint from the same line. The clears at the top end of the spectrum are amazing but they are capable of going over any base from the same manufacturer. You don't need to spend top money for a base if you are using old codes. As an example, you don't need Glasurit or PPG Global base (some are over $100.00 a pint) to paint a Nassau blue Mid Year. The technology from then is easily duplicated with average bases from the big 3 paint companies. My opinion...BASF, Dupont PPG. As far as a blue, if you take advantage of modern technology and pick a color that benefits from mica and pearl and synthetic flakes that were'nt even a dream in 1963 you can have the shade but the color has more personality. The other benefit of modern colors is once you have the code, you can duplicate it for any repairs. A mistake that is easy to make is to go off of a 3/4"x2 inch paint chip in a paint store under miserable lighting. Narrow your choices down to a few then at least look at them under a "sun gun" or take them outside in the sun. As BA mentioned, do some spray outs. I like about a 2'x2' panel and use a good clear. That assures you the clear is clear and not yellow. Be careful when you go a "shade up." I don't know if that means darker or lighter but I would suggest getting at least an extra quart if you are going to doctor the formula so it will match if you have to repair. As far as prep, I guess it's a matter of personal preference but generally, I bolt the body to the frame after it is set up straight and put all the panels on. I spread the entire body with body filler going over every gap. Usually needs two times to get it perfect. Then I cut the body gaps with a hacksaw blade thing I made. Then you can sand the openings until they have consistent appertures. I have started using 4:1 poly primer first and sanding with 180 dry and then 3 3 coat sessions with 2k prime 400 wet to 600 wet. I have started using RM exclusively and love their DP26 power fill primer. Dupont's to of the line system with 72500 clear is sick also. Dissasemble the panels, orient them the way they will be on the car and shoot them. I paint with the doors on and open and close them (carefully) as I shoot. Too hard to do with the hood and trunk. Everyone has their way to do things. Ask 100 painters you'll get a hundred answers. I have found my way works for me. I'm no longer a professional painter since my law career has put a serious crimp on my ability to paint everyday, but I have painted a lot of high end cars. If anyone has questions, I would be happy to give my take, for what it's worth.