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New Contributor
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎08-12-2014

Settings for high def Car picutures

I was wondering if anyone knew what settings i should put on my newly canon EOS rebel T5 Camera? I own a Audi A4 and I'm trying to take some nice photos of my Audi but photos aren't coming out as nice as I thought they would.

 

 

Any thoughts?

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 2,388
Registered: ‎11-14-2012

Re: Settings for high def Car picutures

You've bought a good camera & expect it to get the "money shot" which unfortunately is harder than you think. I'm in the auto restoration business, shoot lots of car photos (mostly to doccument the work done or for insurance appraisals) & in roughly 30 years haven't got that shot. Cars are tough for a number of reasons starting with reflections, harsh lighting (the sun at a bad time of day) & background. Add to that the wrong lens (being too close & using a really wide angle lens distorts things) or thinking a specific angle would look great. Look carefully at how cars were photographed for the advertising brochures, how the front wheels / tires are turned relative to the car, windows up or down etc. Shadows are another thing to watch for, they can be very distractive. Anything you see in the viewfinder that shouldn't be how you see the final image has to be delt with before taking the shot, whether it be a strong reflection or some piece of garbage sitting on the ground or a cleaning rag that should be behind you. What lens or lenses do you have now?

"A skill is developed through constant practice with a passion to improve, not bought."
Valued Contributor
Posts: 425
Registered: ‎01-19-2014

Re: Settings for high def Car picutures

[ Edited ]

@rahip4567 wrote:

I was wondering if anyone knew what settings i should put on my newly canon EOS rebel T5 Camera? I own a Audi A4 and I'm trying to take some nice photos of my Audi but photos aren't coming out as nice as I thought they would.

 

 

Any thoughts?


Doesn't your camera have a sunset setting. Dial that up and experiment with shots of your car using the sunset as your light modifier. (Sunrise is also good, too much work for me...) Use remote lighting to fill in shadows like around the grill or to brighten the car's interior. Think about how the light is working for or against you. If you want a dramatic shot, try the sunset approach. If you're looking for crisp detail and contrast, shoot at high noon. You're the boss;

Forum Elite
Posts: 14,239
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: Settings for high def Car picutures

"I was wondering if anyone knew what settings i should put on my newly canon EOS rebel T5 Camera?"

 

This may not be the question you should be asking.  Maybe you should ask what setting do I use in my post processing software to get the results I am seeking.  Don't have one.  Try Photoshop Elements.  Remember the photo is only 1/2 done by the camera.

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
Respected Contributor
Posts: 1,735
Registered: ‎02-28-2013

Re: Settings for high def Car picutures

[ Edited ]

Sunset setting?  Really?

 

Cicopo is right, car shots are difficult.  It's all about the lighting, which is an advanced subject anyway, and even more difficult on dark colored cars - which are pretty much mirrors if you have a nice wax job.  For black/dark colored cars you don't light the car itself, you light the areas around the car.  This creates bright reflections called spectral highlights, and they are what define the curves of a 3D car in a 2D photo.  White/light cars are exactly the opposite.  Again, you don't light the car itself, but you use unlit "reflectors" to create dark lines on the car, so you can again see the contours.  Colored cars inbetween light and dark can use either/both techniques.

 

The really nice shots you see on magazines are usually done in a studio where they can control this lighting.  Even the outdoor shots usually involve giant reflectors to gain this effect.  Bar this level of lighting you need to use what's available - sunlight (overcast days), far away lights, walls/buildings, etc.  The classic sunset photo is great, but if you don't get light on the front of the car you'll just have a silhouette and a pretty sunset; or a car and a white background.

 

And finally, most the good shots have heavy "photoshop", or "post production" as it's called..  A technique called "Dodge and Burn" is going to help create those bold shadows and highlights.  Much like a swimsuit model, you just add the sexiness in post.   Personally I would also try a technique called "Frequency Seperation" to get the shadow transistion I want, but I never have tried this technique on cars; it might be quicker to just use heavy D&B.  There's going to be plenty of color manipulation, and a good old dose of the high pass filter to pull out all those lines.

Forum Elite
Posts: 14,239
Registered: ‎12-07-2012

Re: Settings for high def Car picutures

"I was wondering if anyone knew what settings i should put on my newly canon EOS rebel T5 Camera?"

 

This may not be the question you should be asking.  Maybe you should ask what setting do I use in my post processing software to get the results I am seeking.  Don't have one.  Try Photoshop Elements.  Remember the photo is only 1/2 done by the camera.

 

 

Oh, and shoot RAW. Smiley Happy

EB
EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and several lenses!
Occasional Contributor
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎09-16-2014

Re: Settings for high def Car picutures

[ Edited ]

Don't forget to invest in a circular polarizer. It will help significantly tone down harsh reflections in harsh daylight.

 

Cheers.

 

- A professional automotive journalist/photographer Smiley Happy

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