Thanks for the article. Super detailed information.Here's a really good article about taking car pics. Although it focuses on Cobra's, I've used it for other cars as well: https://www.cobracountry.com//wp-content/uploads/Media/CobraPhotoTipsDipStix.pdf
One thing I learned last fall from watching a couple of professionals take pictures of a car I was selling was getting a long way away from the car and using a telephoto lens. The guy who took these pics took them all from about 50ft away from the car: https://www.mecum.com/lots/SC0518-326562/2015-superlite-slc/
Thanks for sharing your work and your equipment info. I don't know much about Pentax, so I'll have to check it out. There is a great used photography equipment store here in Columbus that has a lot of older stuff. It's a blast to go and check it out.I don't post many photos here but I'm a reasonably serious amateur photographer - in other words, I spend way too much money on camera equipment!
Much as I have shunned "normal" cars, I shoot with a less-common (nowadays) brand: Pentax. They make tremendous and very rugged equipment for cheap, but are often forgotten or unknown. I used a K1000 years ago and since going digital, have had most of their top cameras. I currently shoot with a Pentax K-1 and a wide assortment of lens. I love vintage stuff and often use 50+ year old lenses, especially when shooting old cameras.
I have a bunch of stuff at Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/grouchodis/
...but, for car stuff, I have most at my own site. Here's my automotive photos: https://www.groucho.org/index.php/category/12
There's a lot of LOG photos in the LOONY section, and lots from Watkins Glen.
I don't do much of the "glamour" photos but will shooting from a distance and using a telephoto, like Pete says, will certainly get you a more natural-looking car. Sometimes it's fun to distort things, though; I use a fisheye lens quite often. Over the years, I have gotten slightly bored with the standard 3/4 view of cars and do more "detail" shots nowadays. I do still do a lot of panning shots at the racetrack; that's a bit of practice to figure out the best shutter speed to give you blurred background and tires but a sharp car. I did recently pick up a Sigma 120-400mm lens; I am looking forward to trying that at Watkins Glen. I wanted the Pentax 150-450mm but it would cost 2-3x the price... but I'm sure I'll upgrade one of these days!
Thanks for sharing. A co-worker actually just bought some lighting and was talking about trying something like this out. Looks interesting.Article on Jalopnik today about taking car photos: https://jalopnik.com/how-to-capture-the-perfect-light-painting-car-photo-in-1831431600
Thanks for sharing your work / advice. I appreciate you taking the time to look though what I've posted. I think I've come to a similar realization this year. Car shows are a blast and it's fun to see all of the different cars, but as far as pictures go, they all end up looking... the same For actual photography, seems like you have to get out of the parking lots and move to somewhere interesting. I took the a little bit of time to scout some interesting locations (both ended up being under some random bridges) and the pictures were much more interesting. But I need to get out more and try some other spots.I'd say the first step is to go through all of the top automotive photographer's work and find what you're looking to achieve. This will give you a good idea what camera, lenses, accessories, and post processing software you'll need to not only take great shots, but get the exact look you're after. For lack of a better term, it'll give you a good goal.
If you go through average automotive photographer's work you're just chasing your tail. You'll end up liking sub-par work, like the link that Pete posted.
It appears Jeff from above does some great work, but automotive is a whole different world with its own rules.
What I see in your current work is that you're missing the presentation factor. There is no such thing as a good photograph taken at a car show, so skip them. Instead, find a car there you like and offer to shoot it for free in a more controlled environment.
Those are some really good points. I honestly hadn't considered looking that closely on how the background interacts with the pictures, but especially with cars I can see how that makes a big difference (basically pulls the eyes away from the car and detracts from the details of the car).The two shots you just posted are already a vast improvement on car-show pix, but need something to draw interest. As it is, they are just dead center representational shots.
I'm sure you've heard of the rule of thirds, yes? Use it...always.
And always be aware of how your background intersects your subject. In your first shot the nose of the car intersects the bridge pillar, and in the second one the pillars are literally coming through the top of the car. A shallower dof can help with this, and selective lighting, but you need to try to make sure very little intersects the vehicle, but you have foreground and background artifacts.
Notice the specific placement of the car (rule of thirds), and the fact that the intersecting trees behind the car are very out of focus.
George is very talented, has a great eye, and puts in the time to learn the techniques he needs to in order to do very good work.
Markus Wendler is my favorite.
Lenses are a personal choice, really, and very much depend on the final result you're after. I personally like the background to be very soft, so I use a 200/2 for most of my work.Any lenses you personally have loved/hated? Seems like you have one wide angle lens you use a lot and one telephoto (guessing from some of the flickr focal length info)?
Thanks for sharing your lens info. 200/2 sounds like a pretty awesome lens.Notice too how the top shot, with the 200/2, makes the front very small, and the rear much larger. That's the type of distortion. Whereas the bottom shot does just the opposite, making the front huge, and the rear small.