Monday, March 4, 2013

Professional Automotive Photography

After a 6-month "mild" restoration, I decided to spend a few bucks having a professional car photographer take pics of my 1984 Trans Am, so during a local car show I asked Russ Muller, one of the regular pro shutterbugs at Central Florida car shows, about a photoshoot for my Pontiac Firebird.

We decided on a couple locations that, we felt, would provide a suitable background, and we decided to have the shoot early on a Sunday morning, so the local traffic would be at a minimum.

That was about three weeks ago, and today I got a CD from Russ, along with a few 8.5 x 11 prints. Not only that, but the CD has more than 150 photos both in high-resolution (for prints) and low-res for the web, as seen here.


Having a pro take photos of your car makes a huge difference, and it is a good investment. Plus, you may also want to use a few of the photos when getting insurance for your vehicle, as most collector car insurers will require at least one for the file.

Just make sure you will have the right to use the photos as needed, so talk with the photographer about this before he starts taking pics. Most car photographers also are gearheads, so they'll be happy with a mention and a link to their site, but again, make sure you discuss what you intend to do with the photos.

How much will a professional automotive photo shoot cost?

Well, prices will vary from one person to the next. Some will do it for free as they build their portfolios. Others will charge different amounts, ranging from you buying them lunch to $100/150. Expect a higher fee if the photoshoot will be done at a studio where additional equipment and lighting will be needed.

And don't forget that a professional will have costs involved in the shoot, from the equipment they own to their time, skill and transportation, so be fair and you will be treated fairly in return.

I am sure you spent thousands getting your classic or collectible vehicle ready for shows and local cruises, so do yourself a favor and spend at least a C-note having it captured for posterity by a professional car photographer.

That will be money well spent!

— Luis 
Visit my 1984 Trans Am builder's log for more details.

Russ Muller Photography (website)
Car Photography by Russ (Facebook)
Car-tography (Flick'r)