Fly out to Las Vegas, be picked up by the kind people at Chevrolet Performance (Justin Cesler, James Thornton), drive directly to Spring Mountain Motor Resort, shoot a brand new black 455-hp SS at sunset, coma-inducing hibachi dinner, beer, nap, wake up at 5am to shoot a white RS at sunrise, then be transported back to the airport… This is the kind of unique assignments I live for. Wham, bam, thank ya ma’am, all shot within a sunset and sunrise with two Chevy Camaros. Sorry if you were expecting a Zach Galifianakis type story! This was (mostly) business.
Oh yea, and I had to deliver the final edited images within 48hrs. NO PRESSURE. I mean it’s only the Chevy Camaro, right??.. an icon that’s been pounding American roads for over 50 years. No cult following or anything. Despite the perceived pressure, the producers at Chevrolet Performance gave me full creative freedom to shoot and edit these two cars however I saw fit. That’s a rarity now-a-days, and very welcome. I brought my typical lighting setup, but for the most part I shot with the natural sunset and sunrise. When needed I brought out a light to fill in some gaps. Black cars are a bit more of a challenge than white, considering they are practically a mirror in the shape of a car. Fortunately, out in the desert, the vast horizon and gasping sun always make for a spectacular show.
Three different variants of shooting and editing:
-First, 100% natural lighting, with minimal retouching.
-Second, the sunrise and wet pavement create a ridiculous silky background. I popped a small speedlight to reveal the front of the car.
-Third, natural lighting, with a new background to get rid of the pesky power lines.
The scope of the assignment was much larger than just these shots of two Camaros. Chevrolet Performance selected 6 photographers to partake in the same “wham-bam” assignment, with a tight editing deadline. The end results were displayed at the SEMA convention in Las Vegas, and all over the web. It’s never a bad day to be listed alongside automotive photographers Pepper Yandell, Jeremy Cliff, Richard Thompson, Andrew Link, and Ross Tyler. After the dust settled, Chevy surprised me with a giant package from UPS, that now sits above my office desk.