Autosport International 2015 - My Highlights

Every year, I look forward to the Autosport International event at the Birmingham NEC - It really does kick-off my year and whet my appetite for all things automotive! The NEC is a nightmare to shoot at for a variety of reasons, the crowds, the reflections and ghastly 'orange' lights illuminating the hall - but all things photography aside, there are always a lot of amazing machines on display in the main halls and the 'Live Action Arena' Here are a few of my highlights:

Happy New Year - Looking forward to 2015!

Happy new year to all of you! I hope the hangovers have subsided and you are not too sick of Turkey! This is just as quick post as I am busy make plans for the new year and have lots of exciting plans and projects for the next twelve months. More on this soon but lets just say there will be a big focus on changing my style a little as well as introducing a few new ideas and also a little bit of a side project that may actually put me in front of the camera (a very scary thought!) so you have been warned! I hope you all have a great year, see you soon...

Nothing cooler than Aircooled

In the particular little sunny corner of Birmingham where I live, it is not unusual to see the occasional nice car. Living opposite a church that holds regular weddings, you also get some decent cars both new and old, turning up packed with brides and grooms. However, a couple of weeks ago I noticed an unusual amount of old, ratted looking VW buses driving past my window. I stopped, admired them and went about my business thinking ‘I hope they have fun wherever they are off to’ and thought no more about it.

Later that day, whilst trying to finish some work I had been putting off for months! I found myself scrolling through Instagram and came across the same busses all lined up in a local car park, looking incredible. Never one to miss an opportunity to shoot cars of any description, I quickly asked the particular IG user ‘where is this?’ and after a brief few messages, I found out it was about 500 yards from where I live. I grabbed my camera and literally ran out of the house!

The event was the final season meet for the DTA Aircolled VW and Porsche Club – a dedicated bunch of enthusiasts with a great range of classic VW’s and Porsche’s. When I got to the event, things were just winding up and I only had about 15 minutes to quickly snap what was left. I have always been a fan of classic cars and owning an old Mk2 Polo, I have a soft spot old VW’s but in particular the busses.

I noticed as many left, quite a few needed an extra ‘helping hand’ and some looked like they had not been run in years. However, I think this is what makes them all the more appealing. These are proper mechanical items, meant to be fixed, worked on and enjoyed, no plastic engine covers here! As I watched the last few roll out I thought to myself (as I bet 90% of the people that they drove past on the way home thought) ‘I wish I had one!’ I will definitely be keeping tabs on DTA’s events for next year and hopefully, they will bring the show to my doorstep again! Can’t wait…

Mclaren 650s MSO

I was very fortunate to attend the 2014 Goodwood Festival of Speed and one of my favourite cars was the stunning McLaren MSO 650s - This car is a true beauty!

I only had a couple of opportunities to catch it on track and in the paddocks but struggled to find a bad angle on it, the MSO team have taken an already incredible car and squeezed that little bit extra out of it!

The MSO 650s is probably the prettiest of all of the modern McLaren's and when you are up-close-and-personal with it, you can't help but fall in love with it. Watching it fly up the Goodwood hill climb was equally pleaseing on the eye! 

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Take your top off! Shooting the Bentley GTC - Part 2

The next day, we were on for a ridiculously early start to catch the right kind of light. However, even at a heart-crushing 4.45am – the sound of that 4.0litre V8 soon had the smile back on my face. There are always some pretty standard shots that I like to grab early on, front and rear three-quarters, side on, full frontal etc. But the GTC added another dimension, notably that ‘C’ part. One of the best parts of this car, from a photography point of view, was the fact that we could strip the fancy folding roof off and get unlimited access to that beautiful interior.

I must admit, I’m not really a fan of convertibles, but in the Bentley, it just seemed to make sense. This car has everything that you could ask for. On our final evening with it, we took the car to a suitably classy country location with the added bonus of some farmyard machinery to compare it to. On a sunny summers evening and an engine noise to die for, there is no way that you would put even the most luxurious of cloth roofs up!

We shot the car in several different spots and the versatility of this car really shone through. It looked great in front beautiful rural buildings and looked mean when placed in the dark and moody sheds, is this the car for all occasions? After grabbing a few details and a couple panning shots, it was time to take the car back.

I was already pretty pleased with the shots of the Bentley on the way back we decided to stop and grab one last ‘hero’ image. I love long exposure photography and knew the light trails below the bridge would add to the drama of what is already a very dramatic car! Setting the camera to a 30 second exposure, I released the shutter and stood back and let the camera do the work. In those last few seconds, staring at the GTC, I knew that much like the Speed, I was going to miss this car…

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What is scarier than a Ghost? A Wraith!

Many of you will have spotted the rather subtle image of the Rolls Royce Ghost that is plastered all over my website when you first come to the site. It's a big old beast and you can't really miss it! I remember being terrified of it's otherworldly-ness, it's size and it's huge price tag that dwarfs most peoples houses!

Now here I am, almost exactly a year on from that shoot faced with the daunting prospect of shooting it's more powerful, more brutal sibling, the exquisite Wraith! I can feel the nerves kicking in already! One night in the studio to get to know the beast and then a host of location shoots, this weekend should be a good one! Here are a few pics of a Wraith at Goodwood to whet the appetite....

Car spotting in the Capital

Car spotting in the capital is a real treat. London is no stranger to some pretty special cars but on a recent trip to the capital, I was completely mesmerised by the sheer amount of automotive porn lining the streets! I am absolutely in love with Ferrari 458 and I never thought I would ever say this, but I almost got bored of seeing them! Ok, so that’s maybe an exaggeration but there were enough to keep me entertained!

In a City where you can see a Mercedes-McLaren 722, Bugatti Veyron Rembrandt Edition and a Mclaren P1 all in the space of about twenty minutes, you need to be doing something special to get noticed in the automotive hierarchy. The P1 was a particular favourite but there were enough special cars on show to keep anyone entertained. The motors on show made for a pretty special weekend for me the only thing that could have topped it would have been being asked to shoot one of these beauties properly! Or maybe taking one for a spin!

McLaren P1 & Bugatti Veyron Rembrandt in London

It’s not unusual to spot some high powered, high value sports cars around London. However, to see two of the worlds most sort after cars is always a treat. The McLaren P1 is one of the worlds best Hypercars and there is always a danger that when you finally see one in the flesh, it may not live up to the hype, but it certainly does… Even just looking at it you can tell how otherworldly the car is, I can only imagine what it would be like to drive.

The Bugatti Veyron has been around for a long while now but it still has the power to pull a crowd. The Rembrandt is an awesome machine that looked stunning in an unlikely combination of Brown and Bronze. The car oozes class and knowing what it’s capable of is enough to whet any car enthusiast appetite. However, call me a geek but I couldn’t take my eyes off the more technologically advanced P1.

I would give pretty much anything to shoot one of these properly so if anybody out there owns one of them, get in touch :)

Brits Abroad

Imagine my surprise when trying to enjoy a relaxing, car free holiday and I stumble across a British invasion the size of which hasn’t been seen since the D-Day landings. I am of course talking about the 2014 Vancouver All British Classic Car Show. The celebration of British beauties takes place on the equally awe inspiring VanDussed Gardens, beautifully manicured grounds that are almost as lavished upon as the automotive delights it was playing host too.

It all began in 1985. Since those early days 29 years ago, the show has grown to become the largest all British classic car show in western Canada, overflowing the Garden with some 600-plus classic cars and motorcycles and more than 6,000 people in attendance and I was very pleased to be one of them. Britain was very well represented with a hearty mix of the very old and the very new!

As a Brit abroad myself, I was also very pleased to see the large amount of classics from Longbridge, which is strangely coincidental as it was where I was born. The feeling of traveling 4500 miles and seeing a load of cars built at the end of your road is a strangely eerie one. However, the most captivating aspect of the day was the sheer standard of the cars on show, these babies were treated better than most of the wives of the owners.

The range of cars on show was very impressive, but there were also a few little quirks thrown in there too. All in all, it was a very satisfying little ‘find’.

Cabrio on a Bank holiday, Really?

This week's shoot was with the gorgeous Citroen DS3 Cabrio. It takes all of the fun bits of the DS3, gives it a Sardine tin style peel-back roof to let you enjoy the Summer sun... But this being a Bank Holiday, the sun was bound to be the only thing missing! But hoorah, it was a glorious couple of days in Birmingham and we made the most the beautiful weather.

The car itself was great fun and you didn't feel like you stood out too much as the roof has three options, roof up, roof pulled back and roof pulled back with rear window dropped - It really is a pretty cool system. 

More from the V40

Another day with the little Volvo and another day of being impressed by it's technological wizardry! Had a great morning in the sun with it and the hoping the weather holds out for next weeks shoot for MotorVerso shooting a Citroen without a roof!


Here are a few quick shots of the Volvo V40 - I have to say it might not be the most powerful car I'll ever shoot but it is certainly packed with technology, it has everything you could think of! Very enjoyable (if not a little scary) watching it park itself. I also think that it's a decent looking car, some great lines on display, looking froward to getting back out with it tomorrow...

Citroen DS3 - Hello Sunshine...

Waking up at 5.00am on a Saturday to take pictures of a bright yellow Citroen DS3 is probably not many peoples idea of fun, but it is in the world of an automotive photographer. I must admit, I really enjoyed it too! Myself and Paul from MotorVerso found a great spot on top of an empty car park to shoot the DS3 with a beautiful sunrise over Birmingham - well worth the effort! See the gallery below and check Paul's write-up HERE 

The MG - MG3 Style...

Thanks to the hectic schedule, I didn't get much time at all with the sporty little number from the Longbridge based manufacturer. It was a shame actually as it started to grow on me, something about the front end appealed to me, well worth a look around one if you spot one in the wild...

Sorry it's been a while...

Well it's been a busy few months and I've clearly been neglecting the website so thought I'd give it an update. I will post about a few shoots that I've been on but first,, I thought I'd share this video with you from Peek - who provide website reviews. They seem to like mine so that's always nice :) - Click HERE to watch the review of my site :)

The other big news is that this site is now purely for my Automotive work, if you are looking for my 'other' photography work, please go to My Other Site... Thanks

Another (wet) day another shoot...

I had the pleasure of shooting the top of the range Land Rover Freelander 2 with MotorVerso recently so we decided to show two things. Firstly, that it was capable off road, which it was! Secondly, that it looked good around the city, which it did! Here are the results... (full review to come very soon on MotorVerso)

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The Citroen C1 Platinum Edition

A new year and new challenges and one of the first was a big one! I had to shoot the Citroen C1 for - so obviously we chose a cold rainy day in the middle of Birmingham to photograph a car that wouldn't exactly set your world on fire. So, to make it a bit more interesting, we nearly set it on fire! Using wire-wool, a long exposure and an LED light to 'paint' the car in light, the 'fire' images were all shot in one take with minimal post production. 

Read the review of the car Here and read my C1 photoshoot tips Here

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It's been a while - random shots of Birmingham...

Sorry I haven't posted in a while, it's been a busy old time over Christmas and into the new year. I hope you are all well. Here are a few random shots of Birmingham.

Tunnelbana - Stockholm's Subway

One of the biggest surprises that I found in Stockholm was it's amazingly elaborate underground system. Often called 'Europe's longest art gallery' many of the stations are decorated in emotive scenes that carry a mix of historic and political references. Many are simply colourful places that breathe fresh life into what can often be dull and drab places. Each station has it's own 'personality' with different themes. I would have loved the chances to have shot these late at night with fewer people around and had more time to explore all of the stations, but unfortunately, time was not on my side, but you get the idea...

Just one of those shots...

I am very lucky to live in (what I believe to be) one of the prettier parts of Birmingham City Centre, St Paul's Square. Last week we had an incredible sunset that turn the whole sky a mix of Purple's, Pink's and Red's - so I ran and got my camera and managed to get this shot away before I missed it. It has had minor PP and the sky really was this colour. I was also fortunate enough to have it shared on the 'Birmingham Updates' Facebook page, a local news outlet - that got the shot well over a thousand 'likes' - not bad for a 'snap'...