Thursday, May 29, 2008

The Subject

I often get emails asking for advice on how to shoot cars. Most questions relate to the technical aspects of the lens, camera body, and/or flash unit(s). Though I don’t usually admit it, the technical stuff is less important than other particulars. Yes, it’s true… to a certain extent.

Nonetheless, when I delve into these issues (in my reply) I usually write something like, "I pick the lens that'll let me shoot the car the way I want it to look." Mundane, I know, but it's the sad truth. Basically, it just seems that people rely too heavily on equipment and they use it (or the lack thereof) as an excuse for failure. We are all guilty of this at one point or another, but the sooner you suck it up and say "let's do with what we have;" chances are the quicker you'll succeed.

Early on I was hung up on the fact that I didn't have the proper equipment to shoot cars. But, instead of feeling defeated, I concentrated on what I could do with my limited amount of equipment. I treated a car like it was the world, and each detail on the body became its own separate landscape. Somewhat elemental, but it worked. I trained my eye to see parts of automobiles that are lost to the average person.

At the time, I really enjoyed using flash. It was like magic to be surrounded in total darkness; a strobe would go off and a beautiful image would appear on the LCD screen… every single time.

Ok, that's a lie… but failure can be a great thing. Such was the case when I did the Gullwing image. I wasn't actually thinking about the concept at the time. Instead, I was shooting the interior and coming up with nothing. I stepped back to take a shot of the general setup, (to remind myself how much it sucked) when I checked the LCD screen and spotted some tremendous potential. I altered the light and camera angle a bit, and after a couple shots I had captured the Gullwing (just the way you see it) in one image.

Instead of worrying about lenses, bodies, et cetera, experiment and don't feel afraid to fail. Just concentrate on your subject which is the whole point; and remember to have fun.

-Ken Brown


Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home