Monday, November 23, 2015

Racing Wooden Boats

These two wooden boats were photographed while running side by side and very close to each other on the St. Clair Flats in Michigan.  The boat on the right is a 1936 Gar Wood runabout and the other is a 1930 Hackercraft runabout.  The drivers of the wooden boats maintained a constant speed and course while the chase boat driver moved around them to offer different angles.  This procedure works very well provided there is no other boat traffic.  We like this quartering angle because it gives us a sense of just how close the boats are to each other while also letting us see some of the sides with the nice, varnished mahogany.  100-400 lens at 260mm, 1/1600 second at f/5.6, ISO 400.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Boat Marketing Videos

We are producing marketing videos for those who are in the business of selling boats.  These short (2 1/2 minute) movies are custom produced for each boat and include both still and video action photography.  The photography is done from our chase boat on Lake St. Clair, Michigan.  We need 2 to 3 hours of time on the water and a driver for the boat being photographed.  These films can be uploaded to a seller's website or YouTube channel where potential buyers can view them.  Aerial video footage from a quadcopter drone is available as an option.
A sample film can be seen here:

Sample Marketing Video for a Boat

Friday, October 9, 2015

Speeding Away-Two Wooden Speedboats

Here is an interesting photo of two antique, wood speedboats that was shot from behind as the boats were speeding away.  The styling and curves of the boats are more noticeable when seen from the rear.  The camera lens was only a few inches above the water and from that low angle the horizon is mostly hidden.  Some of the detail of the decks and cockpits is not visible but we like the drama that the low angle give us.  Both boats are triple-cockpit runabouts; one is 28 feet and the other is 30 feet.
100-400 zoom lens at 321mm, 1/1250 second at f/5.6, ISO 250.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Wood Speedboats Running Together

These two antique, wood speedboats were recently photographed running together on Lake St. Clair.  This photo shoot was planned for the early morning both for the low sun angle and for the lack of other boat traffic.  The low sun shows helps show the rich, mahogany wood of these old boats.

The drivers crossed in front of the camera while turning slightly.  This allowed part of the decks to be visible.  The camera lens was just a few inches above the water so it would have been difficult to see the decks if the boats were running perfectly level.  The location was chosen both for the uncluttered background and for the relatively shallow water.  100-400 lens at 100mm, f5.6 at 1/1250 second, ISO 400.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Wood Boat and Sunrise

We woke early in the morning to photograph an antique, wooden speedboat at sunrise.  The boat is a 28 foot, Gar Wood triple-cockpit runabout.  The long deck, the spray and the wake help lead the eye to the distant horizon and the rising sun.  Its difficult to decide on the best exposure for a photograph like this.  Getting detail in the boat means the sun and sky will be overexposed.  We decided to underexpose slightly and make some adjustments later when processing the raw image:  The sky was darkened slightly and the boat and spray were lightened.  The original exposure was 1/100 second at f10.0, ISO 100.  24-70 lens at 24mm.

Thursday, August 13, 2015


This is a cool photo of a man wakesurfing on a large boat wake.  We timed the photo to capture the tow rope in the air as the surfer tosses it back to the boat.  He no longer needs to hold the rope as the wake allows him to surf on his own.  Several other attempts to capture the rope in the air were not as successful because the handle either partially obscured the surfer or was only partially in the frame.  This one worked well.
24-70mm lens at 24mm, 1/1000 second at f 5.0, ISO 100.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Wood Boats and Drone

Two antique, wood speedboats running side by side on Lake St. Clair and followed by a quadcopter drone.  We recently directed a photo shoot that included still photographs along with video footage taken by the camera on the drone.  In this photograph the quadcopter is visible above the boat on the right side.  The drone pilot got some exciting video by flying in front of the moving boats as well as the overhead and following views.  The wooden runabouts are a HackerCraft on the left and a Gar Wood on the right.  A chase boat was used as a platform for both the still photos and the quadcopter pilot.
Here is a short movie trailer that features a small amount of this video footage.  We'll be producing a longer film later this year.