WHY SHOULD I BOOK A CAR PHOTOSHOOT?
A car is so much more than a bright lump off metal with a wheel at each corner. It’s the freedom to go where you can’t on foot. A bubble shielding you from the elements (important in Yorkshire!). Your very-own mobile office. A karaoke stage with an AUX cable. And for some of us, even the setting for our first kiss (cute!).
So I guess you could say each car has its own story to tell, be it a Pagani, Porsche or a Peugeot. A story that keeps growing the longer it’s part of our life. And that’s the thing – it’s part of our life. If you ask me cars aren’t so much an object, more a four-wheeled time capsule, that help us negotiate life’s twists and turns, joining the dots along the way.
It’s this bond which has us eager to massage shampoo into the bodywork and fettle under the bonnet. It’s also why car photography make so much sense.
WHAT HAPPENS ON A CAR PHOTOGRAPHY SHOOT?
As simple as it sounds, car photography is art in itself, hinged on preparation. So, if it were me behind the lens, we’d first establish the type of pictures you’re after – brochure images, wall shots, social media snaps etc. – and eye up a some possible locations. Only then would we put a date in the diary.
Shoot day is where we find your car’s best side and take mixture of head-on, side-on and close-up shots as well as play with perspective… a guilty pleasure of mine. Movement is also another great way to inject some life into your images, so I may even ask you to get behind the wheel.
*If you want to take your shoot one step further and get some tracking shots, that’s great! However, I would require you to organise a second vehicle.
WHEN SHOULD I BOOK MY CAR PHOTOGRAPHY?
Ideally you should book car photography at least a month in advance. And before doing so, there’s two things you should bare in mind…
The first is the weather, as it influences the overall mood of your photos. Now I’m not saying check the weather forecast religiously, but what I am saying is consider the seasons. Shooting a drop top classic in December, while doable, could leave us in a bit of a soggy situation, unless you’ve been smart and chosen a location that’s under cover.
And secondly there’s the location itself. With many beauty spots being under private ownership, we may have to seek permission to shoot. Popular locations near me which take this approach are Goldsborough Hall and Harewood House. However, this can be avoided if you chose a more public location like the Yorkshire Moors.
CAR PHOTOGRAPHY: YOUR QUESTIONS ANSWERED
Can I catch you at any car events?
Most likely. I’m a bit of a petrolhead myself.
My first car was a Citroen Saxo, so if you’re going to catch me anywhere it’d likely be Fitted UK [NO FOLLOW LINK] checking out the latest in modified cars. Although I also do cover locals meets as well, so if you want me to come along to your event, do let me know.
Does my car have to be valeted before a shoot?
It’s not essential, but I would advise it, particularly if you’ve got metallic or chameleon paint. When these types of colours catch the light they really flare up. Anyone familiar with TVRs will know what I mean. If you’re after close ups I’d also advise grabbing the wash mit.
The only instance where I’d consider leaving a car unwashed is if it’s a mud plugging 4X4 (something like a Land Rover Defender) or a rally ready Subaru or Evo.
If there’s no sun, will my car photography suffer?
If there’s no sun, a shoot can often work out better! Dark clouds for instance provide a stunning contrast, especially if you’ve a vivid paint scheme. And it’s much the same with fog, as it gives car photography SO much atmosphere. I like to think of it as nature’s smoke bomb.
Even rain isn’t bad news. Providing your car’s clean, it can lead to some stunning beading affects. If this is an affect you’re looking to achieve, for best results I’d suggest applying a good polish or wax beforehand.
What car do I drive?
You’ll have to wait and see. I’ll give you a clue, her name’s Skye.
What makes a good car photography location?
While there’s no right or wrong answer to this, minimalism is always a good shout. After all your car is meant to be the focal point of the shoot, so you don’t want the backdrop to be too overpowering.
You also want the location to suit your car. For instance Land Rovers look so ‘at home’ in the Yorkshire Dales, just as the vivid paint scheme of a Golf GTI juxtaposes perfectly with the stone walls of an abandoned mill. If your car’s ‘instafamous’ these are the types of shots that’ll grab your follower’s attention!
Although, if you’re after less photogenic shots, the location could simply be your local car meet – it’s completely up to you.
How many car photography shots can I expect?
Lots. On a typical shoot I can take a couple of hundred images. How many you receive depends on the package that you opt for and whether we do tracking shots.