So, first things first. This Belfast photographer isn’t a car specialist. I am not a full time car photographer but I know how to use my skills to help my clients produce images that they can use to sell their services or products. I have been working with Charles Hurst for several years now but recently a cool request came along. Something that was definitely a little different to everything else so far.
I am a firm believer that work breeds work. Its a simple concept but if you keep yourself busy the work takes care of itself. A few months ago I took a couple of photos of the Lexus RC-F. It was wrapped in a stunning yellow vinyl and looked absolutely mind blowing. Check out a few photos below.
It wasn’t an ideal environment to take these images due to the sun that was streaming in through the windows but the guys in the marketing team needed photos and they needed them now (or then!).
Several months later Nissan wrapped one of their sports cars, the Nissan 370z. They seen the photographs that I took for Lexus and their RC-F. They initially asked if I could come in to their show room and do the same. Now this time round we had time. They wanted a unique set of images to help sell this very unique car. They took a couple of photos themselves using camera phones but the results were fairly average. You could see a car but the images didn’t really sell it. They sent me a photo montage. Its not very big and its hard to see whats going on but you get the idea
I asked the guys at Nissan if I could take the car out of the garage for a couple of days. Yes I could set up in the show room and take photos of the car there but I really wanted to step it up a level. Why do something thats been done before when I can completely go a different direction. The guys thought the idea was great so we made it happen. I turned up on Monday morning with my papers and we got everything sorted out. I slightly winced a little when my contact said that because the Nissan 370z was such a powerful car the excess on their insurance policy was £2500! I wasn’t going to take this car out for a mad drive down the motorway anyway but this just made sure that the thought would never even come in to my head.
I really wanted to spend 48 hours shooting nothing but this car but my current work schedule didn’t permit it. On Monday I didn’t get home until late so by the time I was ready to take the 370z out it was already getting dark. I decided to stay local and move around the Titanic dock area. Check out a few of the images I got.
Had a lot of fun taking these images. Thankfully it was really quiet and there wasn’t much traffic around at that time of night. I did have a couple of cars drive past and stop to check the Nissan out, which was funny but not so much when they started to ruin my shot! As I said at the start I am not a car photographer so I am still learning about how to control things like highlights and reflections. But for a first attempt I think they look alright!
Monday night ended late. Tuesday morning was another early start with other work that had to be completed before I could head out with the car. I got through everything as quick as I could so I could get home and get the car out again. I decided I needed to get out of the city so I headed up the coast road to Carrickfergus then just keep going up north through Larne and head towards the top of Northern Ireland. I only made it to Camlough before I ran out of natural light. What an amazing drive it was. The car just glided round the corners and the more I drove the more confident I became. Such an amazing machine.
I fueled up in Carrickfergus then cut right on to Islandmagee on my way up the coast. I knew the roads would be quiet and there would be loads of cool places I could stop to get shots of the car.
Ballylumford harbour turned out to be a great spot to get some shots of the Nissan 370z. It was just the right amount of industrial and country in one place. After this I sped around the corner to Browns Bay before heading back on to the main coast road.
I really was at this point running out of time. The thing that actually took the most time wasn’t driving to each location but was me stopping to take the photos! The whole area I was in was a location so I never had to move far before I spotted another place. All these pictures were taken with a variety of lenses but no flash or extra lights.
I finished up my time with the Nissan 370z by taking a couple of close up shots in my underground garage. This was actually the hardest method of taking photos. When you start using artificial lights and reflectors you introduce so many more variables to control. Still it was great fun just getting to experiment and try different techniques. Again it was a late night but totally worth it.
The only thing I would do differently is to have a small team of people with me on the next shoot. That way I can get shots of the vehicle moving. Also I can get some many more variations of images if I have another person driving and I can focus on getting even crazier angles. Till next time!