Following on from the previous post A Carrera GTS, a Canon and a Grenade… Canon have now released a behind the scenes video of Rod and I in action, it was a great couple of days and I felt very privileged to be a part of it. Thanks to everyone at Canon UK and Porsche Club GB.
Spectrum Paintworx are well known in Sittingbourne for the fabulous paint finishes they do on cars and bikes, however this is such a small sector where these finishes can be applied. From shop signage, display stands, mannequins to barrier posts there is so much more scope for this work and this is one of the reasons Paul asked me to come on board to take the brand forward.
Apart from the use of the finishes the other really important thing to accurately portray to the customer through photography is the colour of these finishes. Although natural lit shots and phone camera shots play their part in social media, without the correct lighting and colour correction the important pigments and flakes in these finishes simply won’t be picked up.
To move away from the automotive sector we decided to photograph a base selection of finishes on speedshapes, these are small moulds that look a bit like a car body but have different curves so that light will reflect off it in different ways. By cropping these square we are then able to hide the fact it looks like the shape of a car and end up with a nice colour swatch instead.
It was needed to link the imagery to a Call to Action on the website, therefore some shots of the speedshapes were taken from the side. This was then combined to a header shape image to allow space for copy.
The second day of shooting was about photographing table tops with various paint finishes applied, there was also a motorcycle helmet and tank to be photographed in remembrance of a fallen friend.
The motorcycle helmet shot was then combined with a closer detail of the paint to create a second header call to action image.
I love it when a plan comes together, Frankie Jim from Canon contacted me a couple of months ago in regards to running a workshop in collaboration with Porsche Club GB for their members. It seemed like a perfect idea to celebrate Porsche’s 70th Anniversary, but the challenge for me was of course to make it something for the members to remember and talk about for a long time.
Frankie wanted to find two contrasting photographers for the event, and he certainly did that as the second guest photographer was Rod Fountain, a Behind The Scenes photographer for Top Gear. Rod has very little time to set up his shots (although the film crew usually put the cars in pretty good places) and has to work using mainly available light within a short period of time minding many obstacles along the way. I think that as photographers you never stop learning and if you can pick up even one tip then it has been a useful experience. The tip I found most useful from Rod was how he goes from a faster shutter speed to a slower shutter speed in just one pan using Tv mode and a slide of his finger, this gives two contrasting shots in one pass which I think is invaluable.
Compared to the work I do which is much more in a controlled environment, I usually have more time to adjust my shots and more time to set up artificial lighting to get the edgy look I love. It is so much more technical but I feel that I will be shooting a lot more natural light shots from now on to not only speed up my shooting but vary my portfolio.
Arriving on the Thursday to set up; the lorry arrived before the rest of the crew… as I started to unload the lorry I realised quite how much kit I had ordered. The great thing about advertising shoots and events like this is that I can get all the kit I need, more than I need sometimes but it means that if scenarios or weather conditions change I have what I need to still make the most out of the experience. I have to admit I felt like a kid in a candy shop, there were lines and lines of Canon cameras and lenses for everyone to play with along with all the gear Manfrotto, Broncolor and Lastolite had sent me.
The first workshop day was Friday the 13th, duh dun daaaar… luckily it all went relatively smoothly. The first day was set up for the Canon Pro Service members, and tickets for this day (75 available) were sold out in just under 1 hour, nearly crashing the PCGB website! That is the fastest one of these event days has ever sold out. I knew that these members were going to be looking for more technical details than the PCGB members so I set up a rather lovely interior shot for them to do of a rare 356 Coupe, following this I got them to shoot a few contrasty detail shots of the exterior. These were both shot with the Canon 5DS and the 85mm f/1.2 II USM lens, a Manfrotto tri-pod and up to 3 Broncolor 1200L Move Lights.
In the second half of the day the set ups were repeated but instead of doing the exterior shots I got the group to help me set up the surprise shot which was a Porsche 997 with green smoke. This was lit using 5x Broncolor Heads, 2x Para 88’s, 2 x Standard Reflectors and 1x 1×4′ Softbox, a manfrotto tripod, a Canon 5DS and 35mm f/1.4 II USM Lens.
Day 2 was set up to help the Porsche Club GB members take better shots of their vehicles when out at shows, this is the day that would work better for Rod as I am sure 99.9% of the members would not have access the gear that I have. However, I did mention that they could in fact use a speedlight at night to light their vehicles in a similar way to how I was with my larger units. To make sure that I had a variety of cars to shoot I went out to the car park to see what the members had brought with them, and during the talk I read out their numberplates jokingly saying that I had damaged their vehicles. Instead I planned to use them on a couple of sets. The first shot for the day was the interior of a Porsche Targa 4 GTS using the studio gear and then the Porsche 356 Coupe outside using natural light and some chandelier glass for diffraction effects.
I thought it would be a great addition if we could demonstrate a rig shot at the event, unfortunately there was no scheduled time for this so instead I took some time out of lunch to demonstrate to those who were interested. Thanks to Peter Webb who lent us his Porsche GT3 for the shot, using a Canon 5DS, 17-40mm f/4 lens and an 8 second exposure.
The second group photographed the Targa interior shot and then helped me to set up a Porsche Cayman GTS for the final set. You should have seen the owners face when she saw smoke bellowing out from her beloved car; however, she was more than frilled with the results.
Overall it was a really enjoyable weekend, it wouldn’t have been possible without the help of Porsche Club GB’s General Manager Chris Seaward, Canons very own Frankie Jim, Top Gears Rod Fountain, the amazing man with a brush Mark Lacey and all the sponsors including Manfrotto and their partner brands. It was a privilege to be part of this experience and I look forward to the next one!
I always thought that The Royal Photographic Society Distinctions were hard to achieve until I came across The Master Photographers Association. This takes photography to a whole new level, the amount of intimate detail that the judges look for makes the process extremely intense.
The panels consist of 20 images plus a working profile document that goes through all aspects of running photography as a business, I was first attracted to The MPA as they acknowledge collaborative work and as a commercial photographer this is some of my best work. Originally planning to put a panel together and submit for the October judging I believed I had plenty of time, until I received an email saying there was a space at The Photography Show in just 1.5 weeks time.
This I dare to say is one of the quickest panels that I have ever put together, which left little time for mentoring and refinement. However with the help of Rob Cook and Paul Cooper I managed to get the panel together. A massive thanks also goes out to Renato Tavares from The Print Foundry for printing and mounting the images in record time. All of our hard work paid off and I was rewarded as an Associate of The Master Photographers Association.
A couple of weeks ago I was asked to photograph L.K. Bennett’s first ever perfume called “Signature”. It has a beautiful floral aroma and is set to be a firm favourite with brand lover the Duchess Kate Middleton, according to Hello Magazine’s Article.
Having received 8 inches of snow overnight in Detling it has left me pretty much stranded, I am glad that I did not attempt to go to the Ace Cafe last night as I would have become stuck returning home. With Detling hill blocked up the top and bottom end it meant that I am stuck in the village so what better excuse to get out and take some photos.
Along with the beautiful scenic shots available to me where I live there are also a lot of snowed in cars, I found it interesting the way each of them appeared to be covered by a blanket, but this blanket was made of snow. So here is to a short series of Covered and Smothered Snow Cars from Detling.
In November 2017, Pearlessence London approached me to help capture their new product. Pearlessence create bath bombs; which are a bit like a kinder egg for adults. Each bath bomb has hidden inside it a ring with a value between £20-2000. The imagery they currently had was not representative of the value of their brand so I set about changing that.
Today I logged onto Facebook and saw their new campaign, utilising the imagery that I had created for them, it really stood out well and the simplicity of their graphic design really worked well with my clean imagery. Below you can view a selection of images that I created for them along with the other 2 designs they are using for their promotion.
This is the post I look forward to creating each year, the 2017 Highlights. The reason why I enjoy this so much is because it is a selection of my favourite images i’ve taken throughout the year which isn’t limited by genre. Quite often as a commercial photographer you never get to choose your favourite image from a shoot as your favourite may not meet the vision of the intended purpose.
I have selected a few images from across various photoshoots this year and hope you enjoy the alternative look at my work.
A lot has changed since last year, just over 2 months ago I launched a new company “Scorpion Media”, this was brought about by a local need of my clients for Web Design, Graphic Design and Print services. Since offering these services I am now kept very busy and will be looking at expanding next year, keeping my eye out for fresh talent. This is working out great for me as the projects also facilitate the photography which is the part I enjoy doing the most.
For next year I plan to shoot more vehicles of today as well as all the classics I shoot, I plan to combine still photography with CGI and will try my hardest to break into large advertising projects globally.
My personal goals will be to finally move into my home, I have been saving hard with my fiancee and hopefully 2018 will be the year I get the key to my own home. Once this is achieved I think it is about time I married my fiancee who I have been with for 7 years now. I wish everyone the best for 2018 and looking forward to seeing and working with you again.
When I was working on the filming and stills production of the first RWB Porsche 911 build I met Tristan. He owned this stunning BMW 545i e60 which had been wrapped in matt gold. Set off with the Yellow rims I knew at some point I must shoot this car. I heard that he was making a trip down this way to see family, as he is based in Scotland and I am in Kent. We agreed to meet at a location close to Gatwick Airport and created these two rig shots and the composite with the Greenwich skyline.