Photographing Trucks For The First Time

I’ve been shooting motorized vehicles for nearly 10 years now but I’ve never had the chance yet to shoot semi-trucks… until now! The project was a complex one with photo and video demands all being squished into one day.
As our day began I quickly found out how photogenic these big rigs are, no really, I mean it! The swooping cabs and the huge length of the trucks make for some great leading lines, and in photographic terms, leading lines make for striking images. However, I quickly realized how difficult it is to arrange these truck/trailers. No surprise there.
Working with our amazing drivers on the day of the shoot, we managed to maneuver each of the trucks into the positions we need with only minimal communication. Here are the results:

1979 Porsche 935

Over the Winter I had a rare opportunity, the kind that doesn’t come very often. The car is a 1979 Porsche 935 race car, but it was NOT one that was ever sold to or used by a works racing team. In fact, this customer vehicle is one of only 13 that were sold directly … Read more

Dodge Viper Factory Delivery

Earlier in the month of April, while at a car show, I was catching up with a good friend/client of mine who has an unrivaled obsession with Dodge Vipers. As we spoke, he reminded me that the day was drawing nearer to his big Viper-day in Detroit. See, I had been hearing snippets from him over the past year that something incredible was in the works for him. He had placed an order on a brand new one of one Dodge Viper ACR Extreme. While there were some difficulties finalizing the paint color for Matt, he finally settled on Stryker Purple. Stryker colors come at a cost over the standard paint colors available to the ACRs, but when you’re buying one of the VERY LAST Vipers to ever be produced, why not go for a rarer color? …Good choice, Matt!

So along with Matt, five other local Viper owners had also placed orders for new ACRs as a group. In the last weekend of April, 2017, this whole group of Viper fanatics packed up and headed to Detroit for the big unveil! We arrived at the factory with great excitement and great sadness. Yes, these men and women were all going to pick up new Vipers at the factory and do a tour of the assembly facility, but that also meant that Dodge was 6 steps closer to closing the Chrysler Viper Assembly Plant. Once again, Viper fans everywhere must say goodbye to this beloved niche performance car that changed the world.

I was honored to go along with this wonderful group and to tour the factory where these track legends are made. After we arrived back in Minnesota, I had enough time to reflect on the experience and realized how much of a honor it was. It may seem silly to “non-car people” that we speak of cars with such romance, but knowing that the days are numbered for the Viper is incredibly sad. The people and effort that goes into making a car is monumental, let alone a high performance sports car which over the years has broken dozens of records. On the track and the street, the echoes of the thundering V10 will be remembered for decades to come.

This was our experience:

Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio – Amelia Island

My experience going on the press drive with FCA Alfa Romeo North America in the all new Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio at Amelia Island 2017 did not disappoint. During the Amelia Island Concours D’Elegance there are many events happening at once. Thankfully I was attending as Media this year and got to sign up for the Alfa Romeo press drives which included a short time to photograph the car!
During our 25 mile tour we put the car through every typical task: 0-60, 0-100, braking, etc.

Overall, my thoughts on the Alfa are extremely positive! The driving experience, despite the option of a manual transmission, is very entertaining. Who knew a 2.9 liter V6 could sound as good as this! During up and downshifts the farts and burbles coming out of the quad exhaust tips are intoxicating! Beyond the sublime driving experience, fit and finish of the interior actually shame some of the Giulia’s German rivals. So is Alfa back? Does this lineup offer the same level of ‘Alfa magic’ the longtime fans have come to know? Well I know one thing, I’d buy it.

Thank you to Alfa Romeo North America for this drive and Burj for being my guide.

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2008 Porsche Cayman GTR WIDEBODY

During my visit to the 2017 Amelia Island Concours D’Elegance there was also the Porsche Werks Reunion just one fairway away! Being a Porsche Cayman S owner myself now, it was hard not to keep my eyes peeled for special Cayman builds. One build in particular not only caught my eye, but also my soul! This build comes to us thanks to Road Scholars in Durham, North Carolina. Owner: Danny Omasta. Specs are as follows:

Body

  • Custom mixed BASF paint in “Burgundy” color inspired by our 1949 Porsche 356 Gmund restoration
  • 911 GT3RS front clip conversion
  • Hand fabricated all metal “Wide body” treatment to doors and quarter panels (9-inch total wide body flair)
  • Custom made 1 of 1 rear bumper to fit widened quarter panels
  • Shaved Roof Rails
  • 2016 GT4 wing in carbon fiber
  • GT3RS cup car front lip hand made in carbon fiber
  • Carbon Fiber side mirrors and quarter panel vents
  • Shaved rear hatch
  • CNC machined custom Cayman GTR sill plates and floor panels
  • Color matched front Headlamps with LED update
  • Smoked taillights and marker lenses

Wheels and suspension

  • Custom built 19″ Rotiform HUR wheels wrapped in Nitto Invo Tires
  • Complete Porsche cup-car suspension package
  • Bilstein Coil over struts
  • GT3RS 6 piston brake calipers, and ceramic 2 piece rotors (custom color matched)
  • Airlift front suspension

Drivetrain

  • X-51 911 engine swap
  • Clear interior engine house for aesthetic purposes
  • Upgraded performance axles by Driveshaft
  • Custom Header and exhaust
  • CAE Ultra Short Shifter
  • Upgraded Performance clutch 

Interior

  • “Napa brown” and “Natural beige” custom upholstery with burgundy stitching throughout
  • Custom fabricated flat bottom steering wheel with matching upholstery
  • Red gauge cluster with matching upholstery
  • Body Color seat buckets with a matte finish
  • Custom trim around clear engine house
  • Striped headliner in body color matched leather
  • Unique “hot stamped” textured leather accents throughout

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http://www.roadscholars.com/

Porsche Gallery – Dynamic Photowerks

I gathered a selection of my favorite photos from most of my specific Porsche photo shoots going back to the beginning of my shooting career. I am very grateful for already having the opportunities to photograph such a diverse number of cars from one of my all-time favorite brands. Amazingly, all of these Porsche shoots have been done IN Minnesota! Wha? All of this goodness in one state? 2017 Goal: Shoot a commissioned gig with a Porsche out of state.

Please enjoy this set of my favorite Porsche photographs to date:

Lake Superior – Fall Drive

Being asked to photograph multi-day driving events in the peak of the Fall colors up the coast of Lake Superior with a group of super cars never gets boring. This was the Auto Vault’s second annual fall drive with several more planned for next year alone!
I never get bored of being a Minnesota car photographer with jobs like this, especially when we end up in Grand Marais with a Lamborghini Huracan, Audi R8 V10, McLaren 650S, Audi RS7 sedan, Porsche Cayman GT4, and Bentley Continental GT V8 S.
We got into town with only an hour to go before sunset and instantly attracted a crowd. Being a car photographer, naturally I started scoping out a great angle to photograph the car at with the Minnesota sunset in the background. I lined up the Lamborghini and added in the Audi R8 shortly after for some great shots.
Enjoy:

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The Climb – Mount Rainier National Park

This story starts in 1977 with my mom, Donna Hway. In that year, she herself summited Mount Rainier with Lou Whittaker of RMI Guides, a bit of a Rainier Legend himself with over 250 summits. Setting foot on the top of Mount Rainier isn’t easy even with today’s gear and technology, let alone nearly 40 years ago.

RMI Guides Rainier Summit

About six months ago, my brother and I finally decided to begin preparations for a climb of our own. And while there are many great peaks in the Rocky Mountains and Canada, we could think of no other mountain but the one that would be the beginning of a family tradition!

 

We started by taking a slight detour into the backwoods of Oregon.

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Breaking down our gear to make sure everything was accounted for.

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Being avid campers mixed with our extreme thriftiness, we camped for free five of our six nights out there. The views were better anyway…

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Training day. We hiked up a few thousand feet to the snow fields and got a rundown on mountaineering tricks of the trade.

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We tacked on some additional hiking that evening to try and score some views of the Mountain for the drone. …yes, I brought the drone.

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D Day.

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We had a surprise visit from the Blue Angels during some of their training maneuvers.

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The beginning of the snow field as we continue up to Camp Muir.

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Mount Adams to the south.

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Mount Adams left. Mount St. Helens right.

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Our overnight accommodations at 10,188ft. Camp Muir.

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Getting the low-down on our summit hike for the next morning at 12AM.

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Unfortunately, our guides insisted that I keep my Nikon in my pack during the summit hike in order for me to focus on safety and footwork. I was allowed to snap pictures during our three breaks on the way up, but we had so many other things to do during those breaks that I never had a chance to focus on photography. At each of our three scheduled breaks we had to: throw our parkas on to conserve heat, drink water, eat at least 300 calories, and do gear checks. All within about 10 minutes. There simply was no time to fumble around with a my 8 pounds of self-inflicted weight until we made it to the top.
Our summit hike consisted of 50-75mph wind gusts, total darkness, nearly half of our total crew turning back, rocks falling above us, traversing ladders over bottomless crevasses, and beauty I have never experienced before. I am heartbroken I could not capture more along the way, but I would rather be heartbroken than have my neck broken.
Jump to the summit below. While seven of nine people in our crew made it to the summit crest, that is not the true summit of Mount Rainier. The true summit is called Columbia Crest on the NW edge of the crater. Of our 7 summiters, three of us and two guides walked the additional 1.5 mile trek and 240 feet in gain and loss to truly reach the top. 14,411.

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Photo of our mom from 38 years prior.

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Lots of fallen rock on this, the Cowlitz Glacier. When crossing these glaciers, the guides ask us to get the lead out and move quickly as it is a very unstable place to be especially when in rock fall zones.

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Good bro time was had.

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Wheels Of Italy

Wheels of Italy is a long running Italian car/bike show on the shores of beautiful Lake Calhoun in Minneapolis. While the official car show is a blast for participants and spectators, the WOI evening in St. Paul Minnesota is equally fun! Its a night of good food, music, and beautiful cars/bikes hosted by Pazzaluna Italian Restaurant. Check out the photos from this summer’s event below.

And don’t forget to come out to the official WOI car show on September 18th 10am-4pm at Calhoun Square.

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