Pink Espada…

Whats better than a car that is marmite to separate the automotive masses … a marmite car that is metallic dusky pink! Double marmite!

I fall on the side of marmite that thinks it should be known as ‘Devil Paste’…. (just like twigglets should be called ‘Devil Sticks’!)

So now we’ve got that sorted and out, back to the Espada. Words fail me when it comes to this Lamborghini, not in the sense of complete horror but more of a head scratch. In one sense I like it when a car comes out and bucks the trend and goes against convention and runs with impracticalness …

The day was crisp and with the low November sun the day of lens flare and shadows was to be embraced.

For me its all about the angular rear end and inconspicuous tail pipes. Not sure if the vertical back windscreen is for a purpose as the back windscreen is almost horizontal or just added because they could!

This angle helps you to see how much load capacity there is and that the Friday big shop would be nailed in this daily drive : )

The famous Lamborghini shaped scooped air intakes later sported by the Countach across its door panels…

Bit of sun glare, oh go on then. As ‘The list’ is a nice tight article of about 7 pages the images are a mix of statics and of course driving images. Once we got the driving images in the bag we moved onto the opening DPS image of the reader behind the wheel. All the images below are full frame with no cropping so you can see what the editor has to play with. Knowing the centre line can be an issue your really only can shoot from the side or over the shoulder. On the right car I’m still looking to shoot through the drivers window…. one day πŸ™‚

A mixed bag below of the ones supplied but not chosen. Shooting when theres a treelike behind the driver so you can get the sense of motion when shooting from low down.

The chosen image for the DPS. Normally I would have left this image out if the edit due to the large amount of headlining but as this image would be for a DPS it gave plenty of space for the title and text.

Quick portrait of the reader using a pop up reflector on the soft side. Still the sun was that strong it threw a lot of light into the shadows.

Just one speed light to pop a little light (well a lot) back into the cab to counter act the shadows. If the car was say 180˚ with the sun behind you run the risk of harsh light cast across the dash. I’d prefer to get the interior in shadow and then light it so its as unified in its lighting as possible (not a hard fast rule but easier on the eye).

Just playing about with angles and really was trying to mask the background buildings as much as poss. Had the car 180 ˚ but the shadows in the engine were way to dark without lighting it massively.

The interior was original and in a real good state…

Well a double marmite right there… what do you think?

a few more blogs to wright so until next time : )


Mirage Countach

There are kit cars and then there are kit cars…

Another shoot for Modern Classics which by the way has gone monthly now…. of a classic. Well there will be people out there who won’t give this one the time of day due to it being a kit / replica.

I’ll leave that one for you to take on-board. What you can say is that this is a really, ……. really good kit car. It doesn’t give you any impression that its been thrown together in a shed and held together with cable ties!!!

Its a head turner. This was evident when meeting the owner in a car park and within 10mins there were 20+ folk snapping phone images and gathering around.


Onto the first location for some statics. Loved this first building but it was shooting in the wrong way, or at least would need some post work as the building would be in heavy shadow. This for me was not my first choice while shooting that it would be a strong contender for the opening DPS….but in the end it was chosen.


Not the landscape image but the vertical shot coupled with an interior detail.

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The two original images that were used for the opening DPS.


The above image would probably be the more ‘safer’ or predictable DPS… still happy with the post work on this as it needed some serious tweaking to pull the shadows and drop the highlights. Being a white car didn’t help as you could have blown that car right out of the water!

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The second location was helped with some local knowledge from Sam the journalist from Mod Classics from his Uni days… πŸ™‚


We wanted a slight angular contrast with the building / background and the Mirage, some 80’s / block building to have the car in some kind of ‘period’ background.


The sun was strong that day and every background that was pre planned ended up in shadow at that time of day… still was a nice day to shoot a supercar classic…. (be it a replica or not!)


Don’t mind lying on the floor when its not wet ! πŸ˜‰


Above image was another framed image for a DPS option… not a strong one but another one as an option.


There were some art sculptures (Not sure who from but Henry Moore ‘esk’)…. Shot a couple of ideas just because I liked the juxtaposition… only made the editors cutting floor πŸ˜‰

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Couldn’t find any safe place to shoot the car in amongst some fitting buildings to carry on the theme. Found a few lanes in order to get a few motion shots in the bag. A couple were used in the end with the one above of the rear being cropped as a single vertical page.

One funny thing on this shoot was at the end we needed to shoot the owner at the wheel while driving. I said just drive down this lane and I’ll grab a few images, he said “how fast “, I said (knowing full well the reaction I would get….) “however you drive normally”. His eyebrow lifted and said “seriously?!”, with a smile I said “Of Course!”

I knew that I couldn’t get a sharp image of him driving going that fast down a bumpy country road and getting a blurred background out of the window. I just wanted to enjoy a little ride!

That was until we turned the corner on a single lane track and was faced head on with a giant John Deere tractor… locking up a little stopping a cars length away…. “well that was fun” I said better let me grab a few images whilst trundling along for a few 100 yards.

Until next time…


Miura SV v Countach

Well I’ve been waiting to pen this blog since returning from Italy and sending these images off to Classic Cars magazine

Another European magazine shoot and this one will be hard to top for me… To set the background to the two cars and indeed my blog title for this one here is the sub heading from this months article…

“Italian industrialist heir Gianfranco Innocenti bought himself the last Miura SV Lamborghini made, then replaced it with one of the first Countachs. We drive them in their Modenese homeland”

This was the second day of a two day shoot. We already had shot the Countach for an epic restoration article (see my blog here) and the final day we had to shootΒ  both the cars before flying back to the UK that early evening.

Also to give you some back ground to these extraordinary cars please view the video found on Simon Kidstons site which introduces the original owner and the then Lamborghini’s test driver. Really is worth a watch as this is all tied in. Click here to view the video.

The temperature was rising and both myself and Sam were waiting at the garage which had worked on the Miura so we could take it and join the Countach before the shoot. Eventually we hit the road about 10 am, four of us (including Valentino Balboni – if you’ve not watched the video link above then watch it !) the Miura, Countach and an Audi A3 hire car!

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The first port of call….. filling them up as we had about 45mins drive to get to the ear-marked location for the shoot. This image on the right was how in Italy its perfectly normal to make a single carriage way into two lanes especially when driving Lamborghini’s.


After driving we arrive at the foot of some hills and so it was time to swap drivers around and to get the show on the road…no pun intended!


(again excuse the poor copy of the mag…you need to get your own copy and enjoy the images in print πŸ™‚

The opening DPS was shot well into the day and I didn’t think they’d use this static as an opener but I kind of like it… laying flat on the floor in 35+ degrees heat … hard life πŸ˜‰



The original image above and another from slightly different angle…


I tend not to post process images too much if I don’t need too but I did add a little of my own filters to this job as I felt it just added a little flavour to the images and I’m pleased the magazine ran with it…

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Just seeing these quick images (taken on my phone!) of the article …. man thats shocking but you know what I liked this job so much I don’t care πŸ˜‰

The one image for me that quickly became my choice of an opener was this one below which never made the article…


There was many images that didn’t make it which I’ll show a few on this blog but for me I just liked the solid white line and the smooth roads which helped keep the Countach pin sharp.


This one they did run with and cropped it down to almost a square… As I right this I can still feel how the small Audi boot felt but just the sound coming from the two cars, the sun etc etc …. great memories…. but it got better…


Again another shot that never made it… As we only had a small window to shoot the cars we didn’t really have loads of time to shoot from different angles ….. which stopping for an hour for lunch as that was the Italian thing to do didn’t help but when in ‘Rome’ … well nearer Modena and all that. (By the way the food was pretty good πŸ˜‰


This one above soon became on e of my favorite images from the shoot and pleased that it made it. I’m leaning out of the Miura and we were giving it a few beans I didn’t want to as ever drop my camera but also as this Miura is valued between Β£2mil – Β£2.5mil I didn’t want to let my camera make contact with the body work…. could you imagine!!!!!

I mentioned before that I do as little Photoshop work post as possible and that’s needed. Well this image I felt needed a little tidy up! Below is the original one which shows telegraph poles and a bloke with a bright orange top in the distance… I felt this needed to be as clean as possible in order to keep your eyes on the cars and the road.


Both images were sent to the mag but again pleased that they ran with this one πŸ™‚

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A couple of images again that didn’t make the final article but again I’m just trying to get different angles to show off both cars whilst being in one of the subject cars.

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The two images that are used of the side profiles. These are un-cropped and full frame and just goes to show the file sizes you can get from the D810.


Same run as the one above but just as we were going through some towns.


This was the very first frame as I’m sat soaking in the suns rays whilst sitting in the boot, feet out almost touching the road. Never used again but just like the buildings and atmosphere of the location.


Sam’s driving shot that was used and me below grabbing a selfie πŸ™‚ on me phone…. (with double chin….nice πŸ™‚



This picture was honestly taken as a quick snap crossing the road from the restaurant which we stopped at for lunch. Never took it in mind for submission for the article but just goes to show….

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Just a few details of the two cars…. some used and some that were not included.

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This for me was the best bit of the day… I needed to get a picture of Valentino Balboni at the wheel of the Countach. This was the last shot we needed for the article and so I got my 6’3″ frame into the some what small 70’s cockpit. I snapped away as we headed back on the 45min journey to the garage befiore heading to the airport.

I’d done my work, all finished and so I then got a quick selfie with Balboni….as you do πŸ™‚


The I sat back and enjoyed the ride and sound in what is one of my earliest dream cars as a young lad of the late 70’s / 80’s …

Here is a short video of the drive whilst my camera was wedged between my feet. Must say as well I couldn’t find the seat belts but later found them behind the seat and you couldn’t get to them….

Anyway turn you volume up as much as possible and enjoy 30 seconds of V12… (ignore my face… I was just a giddy little kipper)


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Just a few more images of the Miura…

One more image that didn’t make the final cut…


Well for me this was two days of fun, yes it was ‘work’ and when the work is getting to meet people like Balboni, getting a ride with Lamborghini’s chief test driver of 45 years, well that doesn’t happen that often does it!

Great experience, pleased with the images, a few stories to tell…

One happy lad…. until next time and the next adventure


Lamborghini Countach – Epic Restoration

Its not everyday you turn up to a garage which has 4 Miura’s, 2 Countach and a few other original Lamborghini’s around the shop…. well we are only a few miles from the Lamborghini factory….

In the current issue of Classic Cars Magazine, this was another European quick trip to grab images then back again. The guy who owned the shop was the son of an ex Lamborghini employee of some 30 years. You quickly feel the passion of the people around here that it was almost a family ‘business’, not this shop as it was but working in the factory were generations from the same family.

The level of detail and restoration was incredible.


This was the first shot we took from a mezzanine floor…. didn’t really lack any colours! The lighting was funny in this place, plenty of daylight from the main shutter doors but it had florescent strip lights behind tinged perspex panels then on top of that there were skylights which had the same perspex over…. Plus the vibrant colours of the motors had to try and get the colour temp right in camera as much as possible.



You can see the final DPS and the original image I submitted, full frame without cropping. There was plenty of floor for the text / title. wanted to use the yellow Countach in the foreground to give a bit more depth.

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My Italian is about 0.001%…. and these guys English about the same… so thankfully we had someone with us to act as an interpreter. Well I just needed to find the shots and shoot !


These three images of them chatting didn’t make the final article but lets you capture and show the process whilst on these jobs.


Not knowing where the facial expression will come as you can’t understand the language was interesting but got enough….

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As I said this car was clean and immaculate which was good as I think the article touched upon it that well over Β£2m was spent on this project.


This was one of the main cars as a lad you had on your wall. Even now it still is beyond its time, the extreme design can still hold itself now and will continue into the future…

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After a few hand gestures, nods and such they got to know what ‘tinkering’ was to capture this shot…. just tinker with the engine etc etc…


I’ve shot a few “whats you favorite, or whats the most invaluable tool you have?”…. normally its like a really old funny sized spanners that is specifically designed for one nut on a re-build etc etc…. not knowing what would come out of the depths of a back room. This giant radiator key!!!!!! once shown I was upto speed…..doh!

A fantastic experience, we saw more places but didn’t make the final article.

I got to ride in this Lamborghini with a special driver at the wheel ; ) …… will blog about that when that one comes out : )