Moritz Schwertner – “A Shot in the Making – Part One”

My addiction to Motor Sports, on which I usually ground my interest in photographing them, was caused by my father back when I was just a little kid. As soon as I was able to understand the whole schematic behind a Formula One Race or any other Race Series that was broadcasted on TV I usually ended up watching them with my dad. At the age of four I had my first very own racing experience in a “Go Kart” on a circuit near our hometown. I continued to drive every once in a while and just when I turned sixteen my father gave me my first motorbike. As you can see, there was no way in hell I could have escaped this “virus”, especially not when it’s so much fun burning petrol…

However, it wasn’t until the “Essen Motor Show” in ’09 and ’10 that I discovered the possibility of photographing new automobiles or even „monstrous Machines“. This was the first time ever I realized that I might have the guts and the ideas to be able to shoot like a real Photographer would for, say, a Motor Sports Magazine. All I needed now was time, endurance, my equipment and a fitting idea for a shooting.

This was indeed the hardest part on the road to my Audi A1 Picture series. I had the equipment, maybe not the best and fastest lenses on the market but enough to eventually make it work, I had the time (I am still in school so I didn’t care about this too much), I had the endurance but literally no Idea how to present it. I started looking around for a perfect car to start with back when we announced our “Motor Sports Challenge” back in April. The initial Idea I then had was to shoot the newly introduced Audi A1 for the Challenge, making this set up the perfect one for my needs. But some things don’t go out as they were planned to be, meaning that I just didn’t had the time nor the guts to make some Phone Calls or write some E-Mails to get me the job. I decided to let the Idea slip out of my Schedule for some time so as I was again busy writing my exams…

Almost a month passed until I saw the beauty in our local Audi Dealer parking space. I walked around it, sat in it, played a bit with the controls… I had no doubt: this car was the perfect entry for me into this field. Not too big, not too small, elegant and most of all: not too pricey. It seemed that everything fitted within my needs.

The first thing that I did was to sit down in front of my computer to get some already shot footage for some inspiration and to get to know all the different details. Second step was to create a folder with all my project files in it, so that I could save all my locations, angles and other stuff in on folder in it (I tend to organize my stuff pretty well, so that wasn’t a problem at all). The next big step for me was the locations scouting, even though I had no word from Audi at that time. I was quite aware that they wanted to see where I would like to shoot their car, at what angles and at what day times so that step was crucial. Also, as a bonus, it’s easy to locate at what time the most people are around and at what daytimes / nighttimes the light was the best for my shots. This step took almost two weeks, and even in that time I didn’t had all the stuff in my folder that I wanted to present them. One thing I did that I am sure that I will never ever do again was to photoshop a car into a scene to show them what this might look like afterwards. A bad idea as I would find out later on the day of shooting there.

A couple of days later I finally received the call that should change everything but more on that next week!

- Moritz Schwertner

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