Plymouth Estates

I shot this a while back which was looking like it wouldn’t see print but Street Machine took up the images and ran with them.

A couple of Plymouth Estates, one a daily runner and the other a tuned street racer.

These three images above are all taken within a few mins of each other. The lights and car have remained in the same position and so just moving around slightly and changing the focal length to try and get variants for the mag to give them options for layouts.

Same as the landscape ones but repeat the same angles for some verticals. Some mags have a fairly rigid layout for each article and others will just allocate a number of pages. So they could potentially open on a vertical or a landscape, so with dead space above, below, to the side etc for copy and an opening title are what they are looking for with some decent options to choose from.

Same setup but with both Plymouths, these three images above taken in quick succession of each other…

Two lights above for a quick side profile…

On the road into that location above was this waste ground and so we took details and more statics as we had more room to move around the cars here.

Plenty to see in this engine and to focus upon, by this time the sun had come out, so I think I used one flash head to fill in the shadows.

I processed these images with a little more contrast and tonality to give a slight different feel…

The daily drive was good to shoot as it had some great patina which lent itself nicely in contrast with the ‘cleaner’ of the two (below) : )

The interior diving shot wasn’t hard to shoot as these plymouths are massive inside and with the bench seat it feels bigger.

Pleased this got to print…

until next time, Jona


A Legend Lives On

As ever a great to have a subject thats near to home …. this one is closer than the first cover shoot we did for Street Machine. This time was the 1967 Silhouette Camaro with the same paint work from the 60s, found by the current owner down in Wimbledon and brought to Yorkshire where it resides.

With these shoots its predominately a rig shot that could be the only motion shot you get. Thankfully the owner found a great outbuilding near a local farm whose owners were typical Yorkshire folk and said carry on 🙂 …… happy days. The drizzle kept coming and going but we were covered which meant we could carry on with the planned shoot.

The image above was an opener and was used as the opening DPS as apposed to a rig shot / motion shot.

Below you can see were I had 4 lights positioned to light the scene.

Lights 1-3 are battery studio lights (Phoenix – Indras) and 4 is a Nikon Speedlight. All using Phottix odin as a controller and receiver. The light on the front of the Dodge van is sunlight which was the benchmark for the rest of the lights to balance to. No2 light is hidden behind the upright post.

Keeping an eye on the spill light on the floor I think I may have used a few barn doors to eliminate the light on the floor so it wasn’t right to the edge of the frame.

Keeping the lights (No 1 & 3) in the same place we shot a few still (above) off the Camaro on its own. Simple engine shot using the same lights.

The image below I found on the internet of the same car from the 70s when it had a blower on the engine. The current owner has the same bonnet for when such an engine is fitted.

The paint is the original and yes you can see some age to it but its in fantastic condition and still gives back some shimmer when lit.

Still with some original show stickers all add to the provenance of the car and a testament to the current owners desire to keep it original.

A great location and good to get the surrounding features in on the act. The above two using a couple of lights each to light accordingly 🙂

Keeping the car in the same position as a couple of shots above, just moving around to get another angle… just one light being used to light the nearside of the car against the bright sunlight which kept coming in and out.

Some detail shots that never made the final cut but all shot whilst in that same position. The reason being its easy to keep moving and shoot as much in one position and move the car as minimal as possible, some shoots you can’t help but move things but when you can keep things simple.

Only a couple of rig shots we took. One vertical and one pano. We had one area where we could have the car turn in an arc and so repeated the process and few times so we had donor sections from one frame to help clone out the rig.

Below is a video of us just test the arc so we didn’t end up jousting the upright post with the camera!

Rig test video


This final front cover image was made up of about 3 rig shots. The side and a bit of the background was from one shot and the rest from another.

The editor definitely wanted the Dodge van in the shoot as this is what gets the Camaro around on long trips. Always try and find places to get your lights in and simply use a wall, door or shoot from behind something to hide said lights. A couple used here to light the exterior and another speed light in the cabin to lift the interior.

A couple of speed lights to help light the vans interior…

The final article above…

A good shoot and pleased with another cover.





Street Machine is back…

When one mag unfortunately closes its pages for the last time another opportunity opens new pages…

I was asked to shoot the cover for a re-launch. Some 30+ years ago Street Machine was launched and had a distinct Ford Consul on its cover and that vehicle is called ‘High Rise Henry’. The magazine publishers wanted to replicate the original cover from the 70’s. Without seeing that cover I was in on the project…

Straight into this blog here are the two 1st issues side by side. Without a brief as such it was, “were shooting the same cover car from issue 1”.

When I saw the cover I knew we wouldn’t be doing a studio shot but I still wanted to have my own sympathetic ‘homage’ to the original.

Not coming up with any locations, the likes I shot many American car against we settled for this private access road which was very steep up to this junction on a quiet country road. Liking the idea of the plain sky which I felt reflected the original in not having anything to distract the readers viewing. The shot above left was a quick first image to see what I could achieve when I was trying to get rid of the stone wall in the background.

Knowing I needed to get this thing lit as the range of highlights and shadows was to extreme for even photoshop form a single frame, we started to get the lights out.

This image taken when we moved the car around but is the same lighting setup as when shooting the front. As you can see we used x3 studio heads with just simple spill reflectors on the front as the sun was very intense and I wanted to at least match the sun for exposure if not go over.

The front two lights were about 8 inch from the ground so a couple of individual barn door type shaders, reflectors (whatever you want to call them) were used to stop the lights lighting up the tarmac too much. As the rear light was higher you can get away with it a little…

One light, a speedlight was placed in the air intake as far back as poss out of view in order to highlight the red interior of the intake. The final speedlight was placed inside the car to help give a little detail to the roll cage etc.








The image above was just taken after the setup shot and lying flat on the floor just managed to get low enough to not get the dry stone wall to the right

A few interiors shot with just one of the strobe’s again trying to balance the harsh sunlight and getting the light to fill the shadows in.

As the cover was jus blue sky I wanted to run with that so it limited my angles which I could use but shooting some details helped out with a higher view point.

Did come around the car a bit and had to get some of the background in some of the shots.

Just shooting around the car and I think they may have used the above shot as the final cover shot?….

Shot this one after we turned the car around… already shot the dash from the drivers side but the light this way was different so grab few more images while you can.

The owner has a few cars and the editor wanted to get the 55 Chevy in as a support vehicle. Keeping things simple with the shot above the only thing different was that I used a speedlight behind the offside rear tyre to light the front grill of the Chevy as much as to lift it out of the shadows.

Getting a few driving shots in with some simple panning.

Lastly a few burnouts and 11’s to round things off. Not knowing if things would be smokey or not you can only try… Soon as that backend drifted out I was wondering being so close and in front of it was the best option!

It did make some nice 11s.

A couple more of the in-take as I liked the simple bold colours… plus these were found on the editors floor.

We shall see what cars this mag will bring along…

Until next time