Right after our first meeting in the Broncolor headquarter in Switzerland I packed my set of Siros L, some reflectors, and Softboxes and went to Italy for the first test of all the gear. The way led to San Cesario, a little town between Modena and Bologna, the area where the world’s most prestigious car manufacturers like Ferrari and Lamborghini are based. But it is not only the well-known brands, also a very small company that builds only 50 cars per year is hidden in between. If you are a car maniac, you might know that I am talking about Pagani Automobili.
I went to Pagani to shoot an outstanding car that was exclusively built for one of their very special clients. It is an old model specked with the latest technology though. It basically contains the best of both worlds, the old and the new. The Pagani Zonda Fantasma EVO.
The most interesting part was: The shoot itself. We did not have much time, basically only one night. We split it into a sunset- and sunrise session. In the evening, we headed out to a location we defined before in the mountains of Emilia Romagna and set everything up. I decided to focus on less gear since it offers a quicker process and there is not too much stuff to worry about. We took a Camera, Tripod, a portable lighting system consisting of two Siros L, a P65, and a 30x180cm Softbox. The P65 Zoom reflector is being used for hard shadows and contrast. The Softbox was mainly used to create reflections on the car.
If you are shooting a car, you have to get good light on huge settings. Therefore, you need a lot of flash power, which is given with the Siros L in combination with the P65 Zoom Reflector. It gets me exactly the light I need.
Most of my images are being taken from a tripod. It enables me to separate the whole setting in different parts and light each on its own. The resulting images are being stacked in Photoshop afterwards and guarantee a homogeneous light setup for the whole image. The stacking technique is also really useful to bring up the shape of the car. If you wanted to get the whole image done with one shot, you probably needed to bring a 4x4m screen and tons of additional light, spend some hours on setting everything up for just one single shot. Though if you do it with single frames that will be stacked together, it’s a lot faster process and you will need far less gear.
Lighting a car requires quite some effort. To get a soft light, you either need really huge (4x4m) screens or you light it part after part and stack it all together in photoshop.