car photographers spend years developing their techniques and their own individual
segment is not intended to turn you into a pro car shooter but it will give you
the necessary tips so that you can get some really worthwhile photos of your car.
current version is fairly brief at the moment but we plan to expand it into a
much more comprehensive read in the near future.
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Choose a location that offers a background that will not compete with the car.
The simpler and cleaner the better. Try to avoid trees and poles sticking out
of the car if possible or you will need to remove them in Photoshop later.
pro photographers love to experiment with grungy, competing backgrounds. Often
these locations can look spectacular but they can be tricky to work with.
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Contrary to popular belief, Direct sun is not always the best light. There are
times when brightly overcast conditions may be better. It all depends on the car
and the prevailing conditions. Experiment to see what best suits your car. If
shooting in direct sunlight, avoid shooting the shadow side of the car if possible,
although sometimes this can create interesting effects.
There are no real hard and fast rules when it comes to choice of angles. This
is where your own creative flair comes into play. Walk around the car and look
at it from all angles. If youíve got an eye for photography youíll know when it
Lens focal length: The focal length of your
lens will effect perspective. Experiment with different focal length lenses from
wide angle to telephoto. Wide angle used up close to the subject will give a distorted
effect while a telephoto lens will produce a more compressed effect.
Reflections can be frustrating to deal with in car photography. The darker the
paint, the more noticeable any reflections will be. Professionals use all kinds
of tricks and trade secrets to deal with these on a regular basis, but for the
enthusiast perhaps the best approach is to simply choose a location that has as
little as possible in the area that is likely to reflect in the paint.
If possible, ensure the following: Windows should be up unless you are shooting
a pillarless coupe. These usually photograph better with all the windows down.
Antennas should be down. Sunvisers should be up and out of sight. Excess dust
and dirt should be removed from tyre treads.
outside the box: Donít make the mistake of trying to copy all the angles
that you see in magazines. Remember that those pictures were taken with magazine
pages in mind, allowing for text, insets etc. An angle that looks great laid out
in a magazine may not necessarily suit a framed wall print. Again, experimentation
is the key.
res Vs Lo res:
While it is the photographer that takes the photo and not the equipment, you are
limited by the scope of your gear. Most professionals nowadays are using a minimum
of around 11 mega pixels for anything A3 size or bigger but acceptable results
can be achieved with 6 mega pixels if you use high quality lenses and the right
techniques. If your camera has a facility for shooting RAW files, use it. This
will ensure that you are capturing the original image at the highest possible
quality available to your equipment. You can then convert these to Tiffs or Jpegs
of varying sizes and quality depending on your intended usage of the images.
If you are submitting your car to us for consideration as a magazine feature,
we only require lo-res jpegs at 72 dpi via email. This is because we only need
to see what the car looks like at this stage. In fact we regularly get submissions
that have been taken with mobile phones.
To go into greater detail on this subject is beyond the scope of this article
and we recommend searching the internet for more information. There are many websites
dedicated to digital photography. A quick search in Google should bring up the
most popular ones. Your local library is another great resource for free information
on this and other related subjects.
soon: We will be updating this section shortly with tips and info on
these topics and more:
Photo editing software: