Spend $157, Get Over $5,500 in Photography Products Now

Contest Entry: Thomas And Grant Shoot A Corvette

The bar has officially been raised. Thomas Woodson and Grant Lankford just submitted an amazing BTSV for the contest. This video has it all; it is fun to watch, it is informative, and it has fantastic final images. The most exciting part to me though is that they did all of this with just 1 strobe and a bed sheet!

These guys are both in College (Thomas looks like he may be in 5th grade) with minimum gear and yet they managed to created one of the most compelling BTSVs I have seen in a very long time. Feel free to ask them questions below and check out Thomas' detailed forum post about car photography here.

Behind The Scenes Corvette Photo Shoot from Grant Lankford on Vimeo.

Log in or register to post comments


Lee Morris's picture

Now if I can just teach you guys how to manually set WB, Lock your exposure, use a tripod, and use a mic system for audio... ;)

Seriously though, this contest is not about cinematography, it is about helpful videos and you guys delivered!

Thomas Woodson's picture

Hahah well we weren't the ones shooting the HDSLR video but the truck harness video was shot on the iPhone 4 so that explains the wild colors. Thanks for the front page, I think this will be big.

Grant Lankford's picture

Wow! thanks for the kind words guys! This is really our first time working with video, so the quality isn't at the highest. We tried to do voiceovers over the clips with bad audio because I have a really nice condenser mic. I need some wireless lapel mics. Some of the video was shot on an iPhone, which was going crazy with the WB. At least we know what to improve on for our next one!

Anyways, thanks again. We would have not even considered a BTS video if it weren't for your site. It's an inspiration in itself!

Sean Armenta's picture

they both look like they're about 12 years old. no, wait, they look like lee and patrick when they were 12 years old.

seriously, seeing this kind of talent at such a young age is really inspirational. i'm pulling an all-nighter editing my entry and after seeing this and other great entries, i feel like just calling it a night.

really great stuff on here, lee and patrick, thank you for this website.

Tom Parker's picture

Nice work guys, I have watched many of the entries to the contest and personally think this was the most interesting and helpful. Good luck!

Grant Lankford's picture

Thanks, glad you found it informative. We found that there's not very much information out there on automotive photography. We wanted to try to fill that gap a bit, or at least encourage others to try it.

Ashur Conrad's picture

Nice work guys. You're on our news site.



Dabe's picture

Really liked this BTS video, really inspiring and I'm gonna use some of the techniques and tips for when I'm next shooting a car!

Thanks for sharing!

James's picture

Great video thanks for sharing.

And sweet truck!

Grant Lankford's picture

Thanks guys, glad you liked it (and my truck lol). Ashur, thanks for the post on your site. I've tweeted for everyone to check it out!

Paul's picture

Thomas and Grant the BTS video is awesome I really enjoyed it and got inspire to get out and shoot my civic SI and accord. But I am having a little problem in CS4 layer all of the images. I am not an expert in cs4 but just want to know how to stack all of the images together. I usually do beauty retourch in cs4 haven't done anything outside of that. I will really appreciate the help. Also that F150 is freakin awesome with those lights. Are they factory install or after market lights?


ron sullivan's picture

Guys excellent work - one flash amazing - keep it up !!!

Grant Lankford's picture

Paul let's see if I can't help you out (Thomas is the Photoshop expert)

Basically you want to set your camera up on a tripod for the different shots and make sure it doesn't move. You can move the image around in ps if the camera gets bumped, but if the camera moves a lot, the images get hard to line up. The best way to avoid this is use a remote shutter button.

After you think you've taken enough images to light the car, open up one of the images in ps. Let's call it the base image. It doesn't really matter which one. Next, you need to import the rest of your images into that document in separate layers. You can just copy and paste or use file> place.

Your base image needs to have the blend mode set to 'normal.' Each layer above that needs to have its blend mode set to 'lighten.' What this does is add the lighter spots in each image to your base image, but doesn't affect the darker areas.

You can control where your light goes by either erasing parts of your lighten layers or use layer masks. I recommend using masks because it's non-destructive, and you can go back if you don't like it.

I hope all that made sense. I'm going to try to make a video of the Photoshop technique. I'll post a link to it when we get it done. Wish we could have included the editing in the video, but it was getting too long, and we didn't want to put people to sleep :)

I've had a few people comment on the truck lol. I installed all of the lights, they're not factory. They came in handy to deal with the traffic as we were doing our chase shots!

Jerrit Pruyn's picture

how to college kids get cars like this??? My parents hate me. Very nice, love the muli pic move and edit in PS.

Grant Lankford's picture

I don't know if anyone will see this now since our article is off the front page, but I made a video explaining how we do our lighting composites in photoshop. You can see it here: http://glank.net/composite-tutorial

AlexNewaro's picture

Today was the day I first saw your site and it was so strong impression, so in one hour I was already at parking with my car.
I hope my first XP in car photoshooting not so bad.
Will be glad to hear some comments.
Thank you!
From Russia with respect!


Grant Lankford's picture

Alex: You've got a good start here! I like the angle you have. I would probably add some more light near the wheel, as it is a little dark. Also, turn your wheel the opposite direction. You want to be able to see the front wheel, not the tire. It also helps to light the ground a little. If the ground is too dark the car looks like it's floating. It looks like you have the hang of it though. Next I would try shooting in some different locations. Try to shoot outside at night. Night shots can come out really cool sometimes. Best of luck and keep up the good work. I'm still learning myself. I shoot way more bad shots than good ones, but it helps me improve my technique!