Project #05 - Race Car Photoshoot

Here it is, my recent shoot for a university race team. It was a very exciting experience for me because it was my first time doing anything like this. So lets get into it! 

This was the first shot of the day and we chose to shoot the car in the main walkway of the university because it gives context to where the car comes from. It was around sunset,  so the sun was giving the sky a nice warm colour but there wasn't much cloud to get anything dramatic unfortunately. I started without using any flashes but it is basically impossible to balance the light difference between the subject and the sky. 

As you can see, not very good... So that's why I tried to add in some flashes to bring out the subject and create a more 'punchy' look. I set my main light on a light stand on the right firing directly down on the bonnet of the car. But since the car is quite large and the back of the car wasn't lit properly, I used another flash on the left at a low angle to light up the back wheels and the side. With these lights, I am able to expose the sky correctly and at the same time put more focus on the car. My lighting setup was quite simple and probably not very technical as it was mainly trial and error, but the point is, photography is all about experimenting and problem solving and I think it was a great learning experience for me. The camera settings for this shot was 1/320sec, f/4.5 and ISO200 and that is the setting I used for most of the shots.

Below is the before and after post processing of the shot. Gradual filter and the adjustment brush are definitely useful in this occasion. One thing that I picked up along the way is we need to be careful of the reflection of the light and try to avoid hot spots on reflective surfaces and you can get around this problem by pointing the light in different direction. 

After that, we moved location to get a front shot of the car. I found a corridor which i think would be suited for this but it is already getting dark so with a bit of improvisation and experimentation, I went for a darker look which works quite well with the black and red colour scheme of the car. 

I started off by setting up 2 flashes, firing from a 45 degree angle on the both side. The image was not too bad, but it wasn't too interesting either. As we kept shooting, one of the flashes didn't fire and we noticed that with only one light, it created a more dramatic look, so we just ran with it. As Henri Cartier-Bresson said, "Of course it's all luck!" We were definitely lucky for this one and this is what the final image looks like.

I hope you have enjoyed this post and I know these images still have lots of room for improvement since I am only just starting to get into flash photography. It was definitely a fun experience and I think you guys should all give it a try! 

If you have a minute or two, feel free to check out my other posts and my portfolio. For those of you who would like to show some appreciation, feel free to share this around! Also if you have any questions or comments, feel free to contact me or drop me a comment below! 

Until next time!