I was recently hired to do a photo shoot at Toyota Boshoku, an interior trim facility for the automotive industry. As in nearly all photographic assignments, there were challenges that awaited me. For this particular photography project, time was limited and decisions had to be made quickly once our scouting with the client had been completed.
For this lifestyle photograph, one of several created that day, we temporarily employed one of the staff seamstresses to assist us. We set up quickly using just a key and a rim light, mixing with the ambient light of the facility. Our client was pleased with the results as we were able to help tell their story of quality automotive finishing.
Shooting beautiful, shiny automotive parts is a perk of working and living in metro Detroit. Sure the area has it’s problems, a cyclical economy, the city is bankrupt… Still, if you like cars it’s the place to be. This wheel is formed in three parts to create a strong, light and attractive racing wheel, and it’s made right here in metro Detroit. As always, I am interested in you comments.
I was recently hired to photograph at a multinational automotive paint laboratory in suburban Detroit. Although I’ve worked with this company a number of times before, it was my first gig with this particular client who flew in from Chicago for the two-day shoot. There were no layouts which gave us the flexibility to shoot anything that we felt would tell a good story. I enjoyed having to think “on-the-fly”, as it differs substantially from many shoots which are much more disciplined.
This particular photo opportunity forced us to change directions, move our gear and operations to a satellite building to take advantage of the work in progress. Without the flexibility our shoot strategy allowed, we couldn’t have captured this paint booth image.
I was recently on a photography shoot in Atlanta at a brand new 800,000 square foot distribution center. I was photographing material handling trucks for my client Raymond. They chose this particular facility due to its “VNA” designation (very narrow aisle), three words most photographers probably don’t want to hear. We tend to like space, lots of space for our lighting needs. But of course, we’re always up to new challenges.
These trucks are pretty amazing and so in an attempt to capture their remarkable capabilities, I spent about fourteen hours out of a two-day photo shoot perched on top of a scissors-lift. This particular photograph was accomplished by shooting from approximately three stories high, giving an unusual perspective to the truck, the operator and the warehouse itself.
Detroit seems to revolve around cars. Almost everything is related to the auto industry in one way or another. Aftermarket parts and original equipment parts make up a large segment of the Detroit economy. Shooting exhaust systems and the mechanics who work on them is just another part of the automotive universe. As always I am interested in your thoughts.
It may look like this was shot in a gritty, dimly lit industrial warehouse, but in fact, it was shot in the relative comfort of our studio. I found a floor to shoot at a factory nearby, and stripped that in under the lift truck. I love that photography can portray an alternate reality. In fact, that’s the core of our business, to make things look better than they actually do. In this case, few industrial warehouses with this lift truck would be quite so gritty. These are high-end lift trucks and more likely to be found in a modern commercial warehouse that is clean and well lit. I like the tough gritty feel though, as it does communicate that it’s a durable, well built machine. As always, I’m interested in your thoughts.
Not all automotive photography is done in studio or amidst beautiful landscapes. Sometimes we are hired to shoot cars in automobile dealerships, which brings with it different types of challenges. Working with multiple light sources and often in confined spaces requires added attention to create good imagery for our clients.
Add professional talent to the mix brings with it another level of complexity, but also brings life to the photograph. Whether we are shooting cars, industrial factories, studio table-top, or lifestyle and executive portraits, Blue Sky Photography is always ready for the next photographic challenge.
I don’t wear any jewelry myself, except for my wedding ring, but I do appreciate the beauty of it. A good friend of mine is a jeweler, and I love photographing his work. I’m always amazed that he can start with a lump of metal, a hammer, torch, files, and some other tools and the result is a piece of art. It’s challenging shooting jewelry, with all the shiny surfaces and stones, but I enjoy shooting highly reflective objects. It helps if they are pretty, but shiny industrial parts are fun too. Richard’s hands are a little worse for wear. He uses his thumbnail to check the sharpness of files, and polishing compound gets into all the nooks and crannies on his fingers. It’s a perfect contrast to the brilliant perfection of his jewelry. As always, I am interested in hearing your comments.
As the holidays approach, we’d like to send our appreciation out to all. The business of photography has improved in Michigan over this last year, and we hope that the upward momentum that we’ve seen will continue. Detroit, including the automotive industry, seems well on the road to recovery.
Its been a good year for Blue Sky Photography, and we’d like to thank all of our clients; both those who’ve worked with us throughout the years, along with all our newest ones who gave us the opportunity to prove ourselves during 2012. We wish you Happy Holidays and an outstanding New Year.
One of the really great things about living in the Detroit area, is the automotive industry. It’s not just the car companies, but all of their suppliers and the aftermarket companies too. Customizing our cars for style, speed or utility is an American tradition. I can remember looking through JC Whitney catalogs before I could drive. Wheels, tires, bed liners, roof racks, sun roofs, towing packages, the list goes on and on.
An entrepreneur has a passion for racing wheels, and I get to help promote them. These are racing wheels, not ordinary cast aluminum, but three individual pieces bolted together. Photographing shiny products is always fun and challenging. As always, let me know what you think.