Photos Of The Year 2011>> The Look Of The Irish Pt.3

Nissan Silvia S15, EDC, Modified Live, Cadwell Park, United Kingdom
1/30th, f/9, ISO100, 50mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Sigma 50 F1.4

This is looking like one of my last posts of 2011, so apologies if I come over all emotional and reminiscent. It has been another incredible year where I’ve had the opportunity to shoot some amazing events, meet great people and continue to live my dream. However, it can be a pretty demanding job at times. It might look easy from the outside – at least I thought it did before I started – but once you immerse yourself into the Speedhunter’s lifestyle, you quickly become aware of just how demanding the job is.

Ford Escort MKII, Ford Fair, Silverstone, United Kingdom
1/10th, f/16, ISO50, 50mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Sigma 50 F1.4

In saying this, there’s absolutely no other job I’d rather be in. We get to experience such a vast variety of automotive culture that it boggles the mind.

The McLaren Hall, Donington GP Collection, Donington Park, United Kingdom
1/160th, f/4, ISO2000, 23mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Canon 17-40 F4 L

I’ve often found that I’ve become so excited about a story that I become too giddy to write about it accurately. I know, how ever so professional of me but I often can’t supress the excitement the job brings me.

Volkswagen Golf, Edition38, Overstone Park, Northampton, United Kingdom
1/1000th, f/1.4, ISO200, 35mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Canon 35 F1.4 L

I remember some years ago when I was still in college, working part-time in a local Blockbuster, I would look forward every day to going home to check out a small blog called ‘J-Style’ by one Dino Dalle Carbonare. I could only dream of a day where I could make a living from photographing cars.

Buick, Trax, Silverstone, United Kingdom
1/4000th, f/2, ISO100, 135mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Canon 135 F2 L

I never gave up on that dream. I spent my years in college being convinced by my lecturers that I was never going to make it, and that I should have more realistic ambitions. If it wasn’t for the constant support of my family, friends and mentors, I probably would have resigned to that.

Track Culture AE86, Track Culture HQ, Birmingham, United Kingdom
1/2000th, f/1.4, ISO800, 35mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Canon 35 F1.4 L

I guess what I’m trying to get at is, if I can make my own dreams come true, then so can anybody else. If you want something bad enough, you can get it.

Phil Morrison’s V10 E46 M3, Driftworks, Birmingham, United Kingdom
1/320th, f/2, ISO1600, 50mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Sigma 50 F1.4

From my own experiences, the best advice I can give is to never give up and always be looking to reinvent yourself and how you approach any task at hand. Take pride in your work.

SR20 Corolla, Prodrift Finale, Mondello Park, Kildare, Ireland
1/30th, f/14, ISO50, 35mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Canon 35 F1.4 L

There aren’t a whole lot of technical skills that one needs to be a competent automotive photographer. It’s more about how you see things than anything else.

LBD PS13 versus D-Mac ’86, Prodrift Finale, Mondello Park, Kildare, Ireland
1/100th, f/2.8, ISO200, 300mm, Canon EOS 1D MKII N & Canon 300 F2.8 L IS

Don’t follow the pack when it comes to shooting positions, always try and set yourself up somewhere different and move about as much as you can. Variety is king.

SR20 Toyota Altezza, Naas, Kildare, Ireland
1/250th, f/1.4, ISO3200, 35mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Canon 35 F1.4 L

Take lots of images, and nevere delete anything on the camera. You’d be amazed how many shots that look boring on camera, turn out to be usable when brought up on the big screen.

Ford Rod, Goodwood Revival, Goodwood, United Kingdom
1/160th, f/1.8, ISO50, 35mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Canon 35 F1.4 L

Don’t be afraid to bend the rules – Usually, I find technically correct photographs to be boring as hell.

Hellaflush UK, Wembley, London, United Kingdom
1/800th, f/1.4, ISO50, 35mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Canon 35 F1.4 L

‘Developing’ your images is just as important as taking a good photograph. Make lots of small changes rather than fewer big ones.

Drift Allstars Finale, Wembley, London, United Kingdom
1/40th, f/11, ISO50, 35mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Canon 35 F1.4 L

I often shoot with two bodies, one with a short lens and the other with a long lens. It’s incredible how different a scene can appear looking through each lens.

Players Show, Essex, United Kingdom
1/8000th, f/2.8, ISO500, 35mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Canon 35 F1.4 L

Patience is a virtue at static shows – waiting for the crowd to clear can drive you crazy, but just take a breath and wait.

Ford Heritage Collection, Secret Location near Dagenham, United Kingdom
1/640th, f/1.8, ISO1600, 35mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Canon 35 F1.4 L

Follow your gut. I had the entire photo set from the Ford Heritage Collection processed and uploaded when I decided to redo everything.

VADxRWB Number One, Northampton, United Kingdom
1/100th, f/14, ISO400, 50mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Sigma 50 F1.4

I still can’t believe that the year is pretty much over.

VADxRWB Number One, Northampton, United Kingdom
1/8000th, f/2.5, ISO200, 35mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Canon 35 F1.4 L

It won’t be long before the hype machine kicks into overdrive and we’ll be previewing the 2012 season.

Dodge Charger, New York City, USA
1/1600th, f/2, ISO1000, 135mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Canon 135 F2 L

Before I wrap things up (and return to the Christmas day activities) I just want to say something to you …

1/18 Ford Escort Diecast, PMCGStudios, Waterford, Ireland
1/60th, f/5.6, ISO800, 50mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Sigma 50 F1.4

… thank you.

3SDM 0.01 Wheel Shoot, near Magherafelt, Northern Ireland
1/20th, f/8, ISO400, 17mm, Canon EOS 5D MKII & Canon 17-40 F4 L

Speedhunters would be nothing without you. It’s your opinions, reactions, applause and criticisms that makes Speedhunters what it is today. Every single member of staff here always strives to bring you the most honest representation of any of a plethora of automotive happenings from around the world. Speaking for myself, I never want to get to a stage where this becomes just a job. I promise that I will always give it everything I can, just so you can share my dream.

They say that if you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life.

Thank you for reading, have a happy holidays and an even better 2012.

Paddy McGrath

Photos of the Year 2011

The Look of the Irish




Great cars and mean engines! And especially, great shots!