Sometimes I put the Bimmers away and shoot incredibly rare cars. In this case, it was a Jaguar XJR-15 going up for auction with Sotheby’s (the car eventually sold for 1.9 million!). What was it like shooting this thing? Not a lot of fun…I’ll explain.
The Jaguar XJR-15
Just 53 were made for use, and it’s the first road car (we use that term loosely here) to be made entirely from carbon fiber. Designed by Peter Stevens, he’d later go on to design the McLaren F1. It also bears a resemblance to Nissan’s R390, as the Nissan was aerodynamically-based on the Jaguar XJR-15 and they share the same carbon fiber tub.
The car was eventually replaced with Jaguar’s XJ220, which was simply a road-going super car (hence no R in the name, for racing). Inside, the car was so loud that you had to wear a headset to communicate with your passengers.
Shooting the Jaguar XJR-15: Location
As you might expect, this car couldn’t move from its spot, which happened to be in an underground garage. While not ideal for showing off its “life of luxury” price tag, we work with what he have. It was dark and tight. That meant light painting.
It’s likely the person bidding on this car knows their stuff. That means it’s important to capture all the details to show off the overall condition of the car. Center lock wheels, special toggle switches and the carbon fiber all had to be displayed.
Some mechanical compartments had not been detailed yet, so we skipped that part.
Making it special
Shooting a car like this in a dingy garage, as special as it is, means I needed to add some WOW factor myself. For that, I chose photographer’s haze, which I’ve mentioned here before.
This was done at the end of the shoot, so the haze wouldn’t linger around every shot. The result is a shot that hopefully catches your eye, and makes you want to click through the car’s images.
Jaguar XJR-15 Mega Gallery
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