Super Saloons Cover Shoot

Its taken me too long to write a few lines about this cover shoot down in Longcross…..

Back in July it was in the middle of the fantastic summer we had and we had 5 classic saloons to shoot for a cover for Classic Cars. The brief was fairly specific for the cover… it was going to run with the Merc as a single cover but with a small group of the other cars as an inset on the cover.

The image below is the small group of 4 for the cut out…. Tried a few different angles and focal lengths. you can see the stray car in the right of frame…. knew this would be only used as a cut out so no need min moving it.

We added the Merc within the group and shifted the cars around so we could get a final group shot.

Details, Interiors, engine images for each car before we set off on getting the cover and tracking shots.

This Audi was in mint condition and for me would be my choice out if this lot. 🙂

The Jag had plenty of nice details to be able to get some interesting angles.

Like I said the cover was always going to be the mere as a single tracking shot. Below are a few options that made the cutting floor …

The final cover and layout above with the group shot from above inset.

The original image below and then the over lay of the final cover to show you what was used and added.

Really do like the D810 as you can used half a frame and still get more than enough detail for a full page image. Again you can see I leave the images with enough in them so they can be tweaked more by the art editor.

You’ll be surprised just how much gets filmed at Longcross with its test circuit. Theres a scene from Transformers I spotted a while back but the most recent one I’ve seen is a Vauxhall advert which is currently on TV now shot here.

Running with the sun and shooting all around the track to give a bit of different flavour. However the cover image I mainly shot on the straight as the sun was directly on the from of the blue merc.

Along with the owners of the cars we had another photographer …. Racheal (you can check her instagram out… @rpautomotivephotography) who took a few images of me out the boot of the Andrews (journalists) car….. (thats Racheal 🙂

The image below was taken on the run whilst Racheal took these images. I do have a harness as you can see and used it as the rear seatbelts in the car were too long at full extension. Just find that seat belts can be easier to use than the harness. Don’t worry I’m never not strapped in somehow.

The image above looks like I’ve got my finger over the lens….. just turning the polariser to see whats giving me the best look for the merc and BMW.

With the shoot rounding up and some cars already left we had to get a driving shot of Andrew and so the Merc was a great choice with its light interior and giant sun-roof.

In no particular order the final layout below…


Clever Money Cars – Modern Classics

A fairly local job for me in this months issue of Modern Classics. The shoot location based in Harrogate and near Bolton Abbey on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales. The day was damp but we got our head down and cracked on with some details and in the bag while the interview started.

A few detail shots that never made the final edit…

Like all the images I post on my blog I use the full frame so you can see whats been supplied to the mags and how they’ve used them. These first details were shot at a little industrial / business park with various units… so the issue was to eliminate as much of the surrounding buildings and cars in the BMW’s panel reflections, you can see on the image of the wheel I ran with what reflections occurred as the wheel we put into position to get the BMW logo level.

This is were I would dive into some usual waffle of how we got the tracking images done. However before that I must mention this was the best fopuax for me to date whilst on a shoot.

After taking the details in H’gate we traveled some 45 mins through town and out to the road you see above. After pulling into a cafe car park and having a little chat about what we’ll do to get the shots etc I then opened my boot to get my camera gear sorted to be faced with my kit but minus my think tank trolley camera case….doh!

Well that was going to be 1h 30mins delay to the proceedings. Thankfully JJ the editor of Modern Classics and the cars owner were very gracious in their reaction! While I hot footed back to retrieve my kit (which was still there by the way…hence I have these images) JJ had plenty of time to take the car around some great roads to get a good feel of the car for his copy.

Anyway soon as I got back they were well refreshed in the cafe and it was time to get straight on with the tracking shots.

This little stretch of road we used about just shy of a mile and we were able to repeat the drive in order to get a good selection of views as the road was a little twisty but with great visibility of the road ahead.

Happy days as a couple of passes along this road we got the front sorted with relative ease.

The full frame above (left) and the final opening DPS, straightened and cropped tighter… do like that level of view of the front grill…

I need to a little blog on a new bit of kit I’ve had for a while now from TetherTools… a live view and triggering system you can use your phone / pad of choice to fully control your camera. Nothing new technology but I used to use a wireless trigger but was shooting completely blind and had to check after each pass and readjust. Now we can see a live feed so at least were not wasting frames as such…and time!

back to the original morning location to get some statics as there wasn’t any decent locations while out and about plus the light was fading fast…hence the heavy flashed image above. Not my favorite but again trying to avoid other cars and vans in the background.


The final layout above… this could have been a lot smoother but leaving your kit behind somewhere would always have repercussions! … lesson learned indeed.

Until next time…


Modern Classic – M3

This was a quick shoot of the ‘quick’ type…. The deadline for the images was the day after the shoot. The location was Cambridgeshire. We had a car but no location. We sat in the car after the first location idea was a no go, as expected but as they say at home ‘Shy Bairns Get Nowt!’…

As ever for my work Goggle earth comes in a treat. Looking in the area for a car-park, urban industrial site. We made a call to a car park but cut a long story short….. ‘No’.

The next location and one we ended up shooting at was a small storage complex with shipping containers. In I walk with some North East charm and ask the owner if we can use the site for the next few hours or so.

Were in…

Knowing all along with only two of us I’d have to rig the car for some tracking shots to make sure we can get an opener. This was also an interesting shoot as unfortunately original shoot (hence the 9th hour re-shoot) the high res images were on a damaged hard drive which the photographer at the time couldn’t retrieve. Something as yet I’ve not had the misfortune to deal with and my heart went out to the photographer… : (


The image above was the final DPS opener.


You can see the final rendered image and the removing of the top boxes and building with the lightened tonality which I like.

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As the layout of the article was already prepped with the original shots it really was only for me to replicate certain shots and see what other images I could take to replace them with the location we had to work with.

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As we had to have these turned around quickly the only time we labored on was the opening rig shot and the rest we worked through at a quicker rate.

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The image below I had thought would be good for within the article but wasn’t used but was used on the content page which was a bonus : )




Although I said that we didn’t have the man power to really do tracking shots we did attempt a few passes down this part of the unit. With the camera rigged on my Mighty Meriva we had about 150 yds to get a few shots in the bag. A couple of sharp ones …. we moved on!

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Here’s the final 8 page article so you can see how the images were used and below the cover of the issue its in so you can get yourself a copy : ) … again another image cut out for the cover.


A life long BMW…

A relativity straight forward shoot this one for Classic Cars Magazine. Another ‘Life Cycle’ article which looks at and traces the whole story of a particular car which has got some interesting history to it. This BMW 3.0s has been owned since new by a great English gentleman and was a pleasure spending time with in getting to know more about his ‘Bertha’!

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As ever getting a few tracking shots for the opener. Don’t think we ventured more than a mile from ‘Bertha’s’ home being in the sticks. Grabbed more than enough for a front shot, we grabbed a few rear shots for a closing image…


I prefer the sky to be either blue or some good dark clouds but not a sky that’s flat white which is really hard to do anything with…

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A few clean statics and detailed images and a job is a good ‘n. Really simple shoot due to a lot of the images used are from the owners showing various aspects of the cars history.

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Had a little ride in the back of the 3.0s and I must say it was big and spacious with seats that felt like a comfy sofa…

More to come soon….