Like Cars? Keen with a camera? this might be the right position for you! although there’s not many about, compared to Press Photographers, or ‘Paps’... we don’t talk about them in the cars sector, it‘s a great opportunity with many advantages, all to be explained in this article.
Despite people’s opinions on photographers (in general), photography succeeds to be one of the most popular subjects for secondary schools A-Level and Degree Level students. Although there is not an educational course available for Automotive Photography, you might be able to find classes available, or the best option, ask a professional Automotive Photographer who you aspire to be like. This is what i did, i logged onto instagram and asked a thriving Automotive Photographer ‘what made you want to be an automotive photographer and do you have any tips for the trade?’, me expecting a sort of metaphorical grunt, i instead got a paragraph explaining his position when he started off and how he grew to be so good. So asking a professional is a good idea, which i completely recommend. Just please don’t ask me, i will give you a metaphorical grunt. Now, an actual advantage to being an Automotive Photographer has to include the best one, you get to view some of the most crazy and beautiful cars made, and once more get to preserve these memories via photos, which might overall make you money. A second one being the popularity, once you build up a profile, you constantly get asked by car owners to snap there cars, you might not always be able to, but some of the cars you’ll see are mind blowing. But be warned, the popularity might either become quite annoying or wear off pretty quick, so stay at it.
Now for the tips, me being a perfectionist means that if my photos aren’t up to my strict criteria, they don‘t leave the hard drive. This i recommend, if you think that one of your photos has a dodgy focus or is at a completely wrong angle, leave it out. Keeping a strict criteria is always to be recommended, this means that only your best photos are released and possibly sold, it also helps to build up a great portfolio, this by the way can be done through social media, Instagram in particular is a great form. My second tip being always buy the right kit, and only the bits you need. I see loads of amateurs who have bought a ludicrous amount of kit, 80% of it they will never use, this is a massive waste of money. Things like small brushes for the plastic bits, bright pink/leather/‘unbreakable’ straps (all make you look extremely un-profesional) and stupidly large bags for your one DSLR body and 14-45mm lens. This money could be spent when you inevitably break a lens or other bits of kit, or even more kit, when needed. After all you’ve heard the term ‘all the gear and no idea’, don’t go down that road.
My final tip being, get to grips with the right angles for individual types of cars, try portraits for hatchback rims, landscapes for supercar exterior sides etc. The more photos you take, the more you naturally start to get the hang of angles for the cars you often spot. This is good. Take notes if necessary (obviously on your phone, this is 2019. don’t buy a notepad). Angles are key, pariculaly when taking photos of subjects close up or in full-frame, many amateurs can’t get the hang of angles due to there lack of taking photos, practice makes perfect. Right, that brings me to the end of my ‘want to become an automotive photographer?’ article and my last song on my Foo Fighters playlist. This is my first attempt on DriveTribe, please tell me if i‘ve been too ‘Daily Mail’ for anyones liking. Will have to punch myself in the head.
Cheers, Josh (‘worlds best photographer’ -Helen Mirren, David Beckham & The Queen)