Automotive Photography

Automotive Photography

So what is automotive photography? Automotive photography is the ability to capture the essence of a man-made machine by the use of a camera. Yeah I know It’s stating the obvious, but with all other types of photography, there are ways in achieving and highlighting the creativeness of each individual subject. Likewise, with automotive, depending on the camera used, lighting, angles, color, background, etc, you essentially create the effects that wouldn’t normally been seen otherwise. Depending on what your trying to capture, capture it well.

The Story

If you happen to be reading this, you like me, have an interest in photography and how using the right equipment is a huge factor on what you’re striving for. Let’s face it, sometimes using the camera on your cellphone doesn’t quite cut it when you plan on using your photo’s for personal, or distribution purposes. Strange enough, most photos and videos taken with a cellphone are usually the one’s to go viral on a social media platform. Regardless, if your trying to get the perfect shot it is worth the money spent to get the piece of equipment that will do the job while in most cases not breaking you bank account.

I by no means am an expert on the subject of photography, but I can recognize a worthy photo when I see one. When looking at different pictures I tend to look at what visual value is the photographer trying to deliver, whether it being symmetry, and what emotional stance the picture encompasses. With automotive photography, I look at the background, lighting, and the creativeness that the builder was going for, but it basically come down to preference. Since there are many types of automotive people such as original, custom, ratrod, racing, imports, etc, you will veer towards what you are interested in regardless how good a picture is. Whereas, if you are in it for the true culture of what motorsports is all about, you will appreciate just about any build that goes into creating something.

Anyways, some of the car shows I have attended with a camera phone, I basically found out what it means to have a professional camera when it comes to taking automotive pictures. Some examples of this is right here.

autoshow As you can tell the Image is blurry, although decent, it doesn’t do the truck justice because the blurriness hides all the detail, and doesn’t supply any eye candy effect. This was indeed taken with a cellphone. Although okay, I wasn’t to satisfied after reviewing my photo’s after the fact, but it all depends on what your going for, and platform if any your going to promote.

Another missed photo opportunity was this Acura NSX GT3. This was a carbon fiber body that was beautifully done and awesome to see in person, but I couldn’t capture it in a picture. Throughout the  LA Auto show, I had the chance to see a lot of cars and trucks that I wish I could own, but sometimes its out of your price range and by taking a high quality photo you could gather ideas for what you already have, or working on. Whereas if you can’t see the picture, it’s no use to begin with.

ratrodHere’s another example, although the lighting is a little better, the quality and zoom just doesn’t cut it. The whole show began with an idea to take pictures with a cellphone which I believed was going to turn out pretty decent, but when I started snapping away, the results sadly enough did do any of the vehicles any kind of justice. Basically, it was amateur at best, but I used what I had and these were the result. The lesson I learned from all this was be very prepared because depending what you taking a picture of , it may very well go viral and help promote the brand that your trying to achieve when the opportunity presents it self.

Lessons Learned

After the car show, I did much thinking in terms of what direction I really wanted to go as far as taking automotive photography to promote Drivewayjunky. I figured, if i’m not all in, how I am I going to take pictures needed to deliver it as a social brand because as we all know content is king, and with no media your not going anywhere even if by chance it might even work. While we set our bars high and hope that everything will turn out as we expect, sometimes it seems that there’s always that one thing that will stop you from going forward to where you want to go. This applies to the computer that your using trying to edit that perfect shot you may have, or editing that song you produced, or trying to create the next big thing in terms of changing people’s lives, but without reliability and performance, your creativity won’t be on par to what your aiming for.

Since we all have goals, sometimes it worth spending the extra money to produce whatever it is your into. This goes for just about anything that’s worth doing because if you don’t have the necessary tools, it ultimately shows in the end. An example of this would be a painting a car with cheap paint. You could be excellent at body work, airbrushing, fabricating, and things of that nature, if your materials are not of quality, no matter how the the job turned out, the finish product is what everyone see’s. Strange thing, you can spend your whole life achieving perfection, but if your finish product isn’t what people want, it just turns to be a personal hobby, nothing more.

The Upgrade

With all this in mind, I began to look into different cameras and compared what each one had to offer. I looked into Sony, Canon, Olympus, and others and finally decided to go with Nikon. This was because it offered me exactly what I was looking for as far as price and flexibility and what it was capable of doing. The Nikon D3400 comes with 24.2 pixels, 5 FPS, 100 – 25,600 ISO, and it is full HD, and depending where you purchase the camera from, you can get an extra lens, and battery pack. I’ve noticed amazon has some good deals check em out. By no means is this a product page, but more of a suggestion of what worked for me. Another thing that works really well is the fact that it can produce movie quality footage which is a plus if that’s what you want to do.

So with my new gear I was quite happy with the results and clarity of the pictures that I took. I was finally able to capture the details as well as body lines and paint quality. So I went from cellphone photo’s to photo’s such as these…



So you can see the difference between what a cellphone can offer, verses a professional camera, and that is why I decided to go in this direction. Although it is a personal decision on what it is your looking for, but from what I have encountered, you get what you pay for. This is some advice I wished someone gave me, but you live and you learn, just like everything else. Anyways I’ll leave you at it. Hope this helps.

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