x5 £1k cars – One Track – Modern Classics

Febs Cover for Modern Classics shot back in Oct / Nov time if I remember …

A showdown for 5 cars you can get for around £1k. Its really good shooting on a track as you have complete control and don’t have to worry about other cars. Blyton was the place, great smooth surface but its very flat and so has a limit on the variety of images and angles you can achieve.

As with these shoots you try and plan the day out so the owners can leave as soon as possible… So this shoot I think we got straight on with the tracking images of the cars be it in pairs or individual shots. Then onto the group tracking and group static. Which leaves then the individual images last and so you can shoot the car which need to get off first etc etc so you are left at the end with just yourself and the writer…

The day was dry, quite fresh and strong sun which at times is good but going round a track limits you….. (I’ll explain later…)

We needed to get a ‘motion’ shot of each car from the front and then from the rear. As the Alfa and Fiat were paired for the shoot (as they share the same tech and built this came through the copy….) You try and see what features each car has to capture… so the above shot tried to show the red calipers and the distinct line down the front wing then onto the Alfa. This corner we used alot as it had ‘corners / kerbs’ as such to help give some interest…

Shot below shows the position we got into to get the rear shot of the Alfa.

This is the next frame as we went through the corner.

Then onto the front of the car… only feature you could get in was the filler cap of the Fiat, plus it had a sunroof to shoot from.

The above shot (thanks to the Mazda owner 🙂 shows me bracing myself and trying to get some motion in the image whilst on the move…

As we had 5 cars to shoot i decided on the angle we would shoot the front and rear of each car and stuck with that without trying all positions for each car. Due to time and theres no need to repeat each exact angle for each car unless briefed.

On the same corner again (above) this time getting the Pinifarina badge in of the Alfa. This image was used for the Fiat and was cropped portrait. Again giving me reassurance that shooting with the D810 lets the art editiors easily crop and landscape into a full portrait page.

Moving onto the Clio and Mazda as the next pair. The above shot picking up the rear spoiler and filler cap on the Mazda then the Clio.

Below capturing the flared arches of the Mazda and taking advantage of the rear back hindged doors of the Mazda.

The image above showing the rear door opening which was reasonably comfy to get in the small rear seat and keep the front door closed while shooting the clio.

The image above took a couple of runs to get ourselves in the correct position to shoot the white line…. think we had about 50ft of this yellow run-off patch and so whilst traveling we could get about 5 frames fired off.

This is where the sun can cause an issue especially if you’ve found a road and the best background is away from the sun and so you have to shoot with the sun behind you. Here is not too bad as you have a circular track so you need to pick the best spot. Still I shot a few as this may have been another option for the Editor and so the shadow could have been taken out.

A note as well to say that all the images in this blog (apart from set-up images) are full frame and are what I send the mag. You can see in some of the corners some vignetting is present…. again I’d leave this in and if needs be it can be sorted out if its a problem but I normally shoot slightly wider to get some area for cropping.

Again shooting into the sun is always an option as a different feel and of course some lensflare (which some people like) You just have to post the image a little more to bring out the shadow details.

Above the same type of shot as the Clio rear one but on another area of the track. This took a couple of goes as its hard to follow a car close enough to get the shot but we had to get both cars to leave the racing line at a certain point.

After the two pairs it was the Mondeo for the single car…. at times its easier to have just the one car to sort out.

Both of these images taken from my ‘Mighty Meriva’….. and this was the last job I did from it as it has now been upgraded 🙂 …. but it was a fantastic car for these tracking shots.

This shot shows the white line and the yellow area is just off camera to the left. Not always that good as you’ve got to be careful of the stones off the track getting kicked up and possibly damaging the car. Of course getting the car close enough to the tracking vehicle which is always too close for comfort and not normal at all. Again why being on a track is ideal.

After the tracking we moved onto the panning shots of each of the pairs and then individual panning of each car.

The above image was used again cropped to portrait. To keep things moving along I positioned myself here and then got the cars to follow one another with enough gap for me to re-position. This is where radios come in a treat! and the first time I used a set of four I got…

After all the motion shots it was a quick break and thankfully there was a track day on another area of the track and so the afe was in full swing so a decent buttie was enjoyed by all before we cracked on.

It took a little positioning at first but once you get the first few cars in the right place things move along better.

Being 6’3″ just some small steps can be enough for the height needed. (the only hat I had in the car was me bobble hat!)

You can see from this image that we started with the Alfa facing from right to left before we flipped it and things then fell into place.

Even though shooting plenty of verticals this one was the final image for the cover…. taking the sky from one of the other frames.

This shot I framed as an option for the opening DPS. Think is one of the very few times my choice is what has been used…

A few other group shots and a few of the tracking group shot…(which always takes a few goes!)

Sometimes you need to get on the floor for work…..!

For each of the cars we took the same front 3/4 shot from a few angles and then an interior, owners shot and then some details for each car. Bit of a production line but you soon get through them…

A few more ….. and a few that were included in the article.

Some thumbnails of the final spreads, two pages per car then a few pages for details and verdict.

A good day out with some great owners who seemed to enjoy the day and got stuck in… This is febs cover shoot and the first of the monthly editions.

I shot the first front cover back in 2014 and then it was a by-monthly magazine, so to see it take off and in one year go monthly I’m looking forward to the future of the mag.

(A shout out and thanks to the owners for some of the background images included in the blog 🙂

Till next time.

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