Car Photographer Stuck At Home Due To Coronavirus Pandemic Does A Stunning Photoshoot With A Toy Car


A lot of people have had to cancel or postpone experiences they were looking forward to for what seems like ages due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. While some chose to mope about it in despair, others are dedicated to making their quarantine as wholesome and fulfilling as possible.

India-based automotive photographer Kunal Kelkar is certainly one of the latter. He had been in talks with Lamborghini about a photoshoot since the beginning of the year, but the coronavirus lockdown mixed up his plans. To not feel so blue, he decided to try to replicate the photoshoot at home with a toy car and a treadmill and the results are surprisingly realistic!

More info: The Autofocus

India-based automotive photographer Kunal Kelkar had been in talks with Lamborghini about a possible photoshoot since the beginning of the year

Image credits: theautofocus

India-based automotive photographer Kunal Kelkar can certainly feel towards the people who missed a huge opportunity due to the coronavirus lockdown. He was in the talks with Lamborghini about a possible photoshoot since the beginning of the year and was ready to pack his bags for Europe when the coronavirus struck first Italy and then the rest of Europe and the whole world as well.

He and his partner were supposed to go to Spain for a project in April and then travel to Italy to do the Lamborghini project

Image credits: theautofocus

Even though he had the opportunity with such brands as Mercedes-Benz, Volvo, Rimac, Zenvo, Lexus, Jaguar, Land Rover, MG, and others, he was beyond excited about the Lamborghini project. “Lamborghini has to be my favorite supercar manufacturer, and I was looking forward to this opportunity,” Kunal said.

Since Lamborghini is Kunal’s favorite supercar manufacturer, he was really excited for the trip

Image credits: theautofocus

“With a total lockdown issued, shooting cars out on the streets was completely off the table. My mind was constantly going on and on about the fact that I would have been photographing a Lamborghini in Tuscany, and I think that’s what inspired me to try and do something creative with the 1:18-scale Lamborghini Huracán replica,” he continued.

Unfortunately, Italy was extremely affected by coronavirus and, soon after, India went under lockdown too

Image credits: theautofocus

Since not only shooting cars in streets was of the table during the lockdown but going to the gym as well, the treadmill he had at home was put to use. “During a cool down, it dawned on me that the treadmill belt below looked very similar to a road in motion something that every automotive photographer would be familiar with from hanging out from the back of a car to take rolling shots.

While in lockdown, Kunal didn’t let himself mope around and got inspired to do something creative with a toy replica of a Lamborghini Huracan

Image credits: theautofocus

“It was a eureka moment and I thought, technically it is just like a rolling road, so it should give me similar results to if I were photographing tracking or rig shots of a real car. I tried it out immediately, and it was exactly as I had imagined,” Kunal explained.

He noticed that the treadmill belt looked similar to the road in motion

Image credits: theautofocus

But it wasn’t really that easy to get a realistic shot. “[It] was hard was trying to make the car, which is just a simple model, look like the real thing. The panel gaps, the paint, and the proportions are far from the real car, and I was really aiming to make it look like I had shot a real Lambo,” said Kunal.

Kunal then immediately proceeded to try out his theory and it worked!

Image credits: theautofocus

When talking about the challenges of the shoot, he says it was difficult to get the whole scene in place. “The biggest challenge was getting the whole scene in focus. A model car behaves very differently from a real one. Even though the car was attached to the base of the treadmill with a string to hold it in place, it still moved quite a bit, either left or right, or was bouncing over the texture of the treadmill belt.”

Kunal said it was a challenge to make the toy look like a real car: “The panel gaps, the paint, and the proportions are far from the real car,” he said

Image credits: theautofocus

“I think another challenge was not wanting to spray too much water on the car because that led to large water droplets forming on the surface and it looked completely unrealistic,” Kunal said. He used a spray bottle to create the rain and water on the treadmill and also used a ping pong table net to make the track fencing in order to create a realistic-looking scene.

“The biggest challenge was getting the whole scene in focus,” he said

Image credits: theautofocus

It took the photographer two hours to complete his set and figure out the lights and the speed. “The first shot took the longest, probably about two hours. There was a lot of experimentation with the lights and the speed of the treadmill. Once it was all locked in, I think the other shots were done in the third hour.”

“A model car behaves very differently from a real one”

Image credits: theautofocus

He deemed fitting to name the striking set of images “The Art of Racing in the Rain”. “Yes, yes, I know it’s a title of a book and a movie, but it happened to be [a fitting] title for the series of model Lamborghini Huracán images I shot on a treadmill during the COVID-19 lockdown in India.”

“Another challenge was not wanting to spray too much water on the car because that led to large water droplets forming on the surface and it looked completely unrealistic”

Image credits: theautofocus

He said the first shot took about two hours before he figured out everything with the speed and the light, but we say the results were sure worth the hassle!

You can see some little snippets from backstage here:

People loved the results




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