The fantastic shooting of Porsche 911
Denis Minchenkov is a professional car photographer. His primary goal is to demonstrate a car as a piece of art. Through his entire work, the photographer inspires life and gives soul to an ordinary vehicle. In the following article, Denis is ready to share essential organizational moments and the main idea of shooting one of his models, which is a Porsche 911.
The car brand Porsche has one the biggest number of iconic racing liveries, advertising stories, and events. The body of the 911 model has been the epitome of a sports car for more than 50 years. That is why Denis Minchenkov choses exactly this car model for his photo shooting, because he aims to demonstrate his vision of beauty in this rich story.
According to the photographer, this is the most conceptual and strange shot, which he managed to create during his entire creative career. The initial idea was the following: shooting a car so that it wouldn’t be presented exactly like a vehicle in the frame. In order to achieve the goal, it was necessary to remove the usual forms and landmarks for perception. At the stage of doing sketches, it became obvious that just partial cutting off of fragments of the car body did not give the desired effect. Something more serious was needed.
The photographer went through a lot of different shapes. Very soon, it became clear that using simple squares or triangles did not give the proper wow effect. As a result, the choice fell on the arrow, because it was much easier to create, and at the same time it contained enough faces, which could capture various parts of the vehicle. Additionally, simple associations of the vehicle with the figures immediately lead to this geometric figure, simply because it symbolizes movement, which is one of the main functions of any vehicle.
The final touch of the installation is the contour, which is composed of five separate fragments, covering the car where it needs to be. In case of even the slightest deviation from the line of the lens, the arrow loses the primary shape. Racks and shadows from them work as a reminder of the mortal reality.
“Absolutely everything was done by hand, I sawed all the arrows in the workshops, painted, and transported. As a final result, it is probably one of the top of all my shootings in terms of energy consumption per frame. A lot of time was devoted to this project, and the result looks really strange and unusual for average automotive activities. Most people are used to perceiving a car as a vehicle, but here we managed to get away from that concept by cutting off the usual forms. Speaking about the main feature, which sadly you cannot really feel by watching the photo, is that the arrow is made of five separate pieces that are placed at different distances from the camera, and if you shift the point of view literally by 20 cm, all the straight lines of the arrow start disappearing and turning into pure chaos. So everything was built exactly from a single angle”, Denis Minchenkov says.
The process of shooting a car in a photo studio is a very challenging task. The key problem that every photographer faces is reflections on the body of a car. In order to get the desired combination of lighting, highlights, and angles, it can take hours of work of several people. On this shoot, Minchenkov’s team consisted of four people. Just a single stage of installing a large frost frame above the car requires the enormous efforts of the minimum two persons. Usually the first photo can be obtained after about two hours of hard work in the photo studio. During that project, it was necessary to paint all the wooden elements, because due to their size it was not possible to do this at home. The process of making the needed figure out of them also took the team about an hour. That is why, Denis succeeded to get the first excellent photo approximately four hours after his arrival at the hall.
In the liabilities, the team devoted more than 70 hours of work, including various tests of the scheme on a test car, trips to the construction site and rental, and a ten-hour stay in the photo studio where the photo was created.
As the final result, Denis and his team succeeded to recreate the perception of the car not as an ordinary means of transportation in the eyes of the audience. “Obviously, the complete separation of the image from the essence did not happen, and it was done intentionally. I have deliberately placed significant parts of the car in the working space of the boom so that anyone can identify the contents with the car. If there were more radical attempts that could negate the very validity of using a car in the frame”, as a car photographer explained.