This was a bit of a bonus shoot. The morning consisted of headshots for Saving You, an independent mortgage advisor. The usual corporate headshot kinda thing. However, the Managing Director is a huge camper van fanatic, doing his own conversions and getting away most weekends. And I just couldn’t miss an opportunity to have a bit of a play.

After all, vehicle or automotive photography is something I thoroughly enjoy doing. Steve’s van is a really nice, dark metallic orange colour, and it was going to pop really nicely against the foreboding sky and landscape. The first thing to do was to find my base exposure, which turned out to be 1/125th sec at ISO200 and f7.1. By increasing the exposure to 1/250th sec and f9 at ISO200, I have underexposed the ambient by a full stop, increasing the contrast between the abient surroundings, and the van, which I will light.

I placed an Elinchrom ELB400 frame left and firing through a high intensity reflector at an output of 5.0. The head was at full height on the lightstand, and angled slightly downward, towards the van grille. A second ELB400 was placed frame right, again at full height on the light stand and firing at an output of 6.0 through another high intensity reflector.

I shot three frames. One at ISO64, one at ISO200 and a final one at ISO400. This allowed me to blend the frames to increase the dynamic range. Standard bracketing using shutter speeds would only have effected the ambient light within the image, and not the lit van. Bracketing using aprture adjustments would have been pretty funky. Using ISO effects the whole exposure, and the blending process tends to negate any potential noise issue. Although it’s unlikely to be an issue at the range I was using.

Olympus E-M1 mkII 1/250th sec ISO64/200/400 12-400 f9

This is the behind the scenes (BTS) image, kindly supplied by Damien McGlade.

Same settings and technique, different view.

BTS for above, again from Damien.

Last image, and possibly my favourite. Same settings and technique.

Last BTS from Damien.

Saving You are definitely worth a look if you are looking for a mortgage, or re-mortgaging or about to come out of a fixed term mortgage rate. I can vouch for them on personal experience. They can be found at

Damien can be found at

I provide training via Focal Point Pro.