Bright sunny autumn day, a McLaren GT and one of the world’s most iconic mountains to put together in my viewfinder: what could be better?
Since February of 2021, I’ve been on board with McLaren Japan, shooting various of the company’s iconic supercars in various locations throughout the country.
Typically the work is used solely for the McLaren Japan social networks. But we’re also creating imagery that gets used in a wider way for the various PR requirements McLaren has globally.
The 5 P’s (6 if you include ‘prayer’)
Prior Preparation Prevents Piss-poor Performance: it’s an old adage but it really does pay to do as much prep before these shoots as possible. Wth Fuji, obviously, the one random variable is weather. The area around the mountain has something of a micro-climate. Weather is very changeable throughout the day, too. Thus far (touch wood) I’ve been lucky with automotive shoots around the Fuji Five Lakes area. That might be down down to the sixth ‘P’ in my repertoire when it comes to photographing Mount Fuji: prayer. I’m not a religious guy but there’s no harm in a quick trip to the shrine to ask for luck, fair wind and clear skies. And I try to do it before every shoot which features the old lady. Cos, yes, Mount Fuji is a she.
Location, location, location….
With 23years of experience in Japan, more when you combine that with the years spent here by others in the team, together we know some great spots. Locations that don’t require permissions and others which do. But, we’ve got a ton of experience dealing with the local councils, police, businesses and land owners. So, there’s usually nowhere we can’t sort out. Ground clearance of something like a supercar limits you a little. But the GT has variable ride height, which helps a lot in these cases. Whatever the creative theme of our shoot, we’ll always find great spots to put the car. One great example of this is the Iyashi-no-Sato traditional village, near Lake Saiko, and with glorious uninterrupted views of Fuji. The guy who runs the place is a contact. Plus, he’s the local councillor. On top of that he’s super friendly. always up for a challenge and loves cars. Yay!
What you get when you ask us to shoot for you…
Japanorama provides full-service photo shooting. We’ll help you devise creative ideas for the shoot, find talent, organise permissions, do all the location-hunting and provide you with interactive mapping of location ideas, local amenities and routes. On the day we can take care of stills and video, behind-the scenes (BTS) documentary, cinemagraphs. Whatever you need, we can take care of it in-house or within our trusted group of experience professionals.