Posts Tagged ‘photos’

The Secret of Vehicle Photography

June 9, 2010

Taking pictures of a car requires more skill than some people think…there is a process to it, and if you find your pictures turning out less than satisfactory then you’re reading the right blog. By the time you finish reading this, hopefully you will be able to snap better shots of your car either to sell, or for your own personal use. You’ll learn techniques and the process behind taking good, quality vehicle pictures.

What you’ll need:

-A camera, any will work but a digital SLR is best
-A light source
-Photo editing software
-A cloudy day

The best time to get good pictures of a car outside is on a cloudy day. This is because the clouds diffuse the harsh light from the sun which reflects into the lens making your pictures turn out too dark because the shutter closes too soon.

The photo editing software is simply to help make the lighting even, sharpen the pictures, and put the color back into the car because the camera doesn’t always take a picture that turns out looking exactly like how you saw the subject.

The light source will help to light up the areas that your camera’s flash won’t reach.


For the exterior, don’t stand close to the car…get back a ways, and zoom in. Depending on the type of camera you are using, don’t use the digital zoom. Only use the optical zoom mode. try getting down below eye level a little for a car, and maybe up over eye level for a truck…a different perspective will show people something than they’re used to seeing.

Close the view in on the bumpers, but be careful not to cut any of the car off. Try to have a non-distracting background, you don’t want too much going on to distract from your subject. Take your picture.

Walk around the car getting different angles, try different heights…lay down on the ground, or shoot from a ladder. The sky is the limit!


Grab your light, and you’ll want to aim the light into the car, but not at the same angle as the camera. The light is supposed to fill in what the flash will miss, so you don’t want the light shining the same way that your flash will fire.

The interior is pretty easy, just make sure its clean 🙂

That’s the hardest part…


Whatever software you use, make sure that it is capable of adjusting the lighting and saturation, Adobe Photoshop Elements works great for me, and it’s fairly cheap.

Import all of the images into the program, and for each photo, individually adjust the lighting so that it looks even throughout the entire picture. Also, if your car is anything other than silver, black, or white, you can adjust the saturation to give the car a better look. If you feel that the picture is a little fuzzy, you can sharpen the picture, but not too much.

There you go, that’s vehicle photography 101…hope this helps.