ASTON PARROTT, MEET THE EVO STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER WHO GETS TO TRAVEL THE WORLD SHOOTING THE THING HE LOVES
(singer vehicle design 911 shot in South Wales)
Staff photographer for Evo Magazine, one of the biggest automotive publications around is pretty cool! We want know what someone needs to do to grab a job like that, talk us through from first camera to shooting some of the world’s most beautiful cars all across the globe?
At the age of thirteen I began working at my local camera shop on the weekends this is also where I purchased my first camera. It was a Canon Eos 300v 35mm film SLR with a Canon EF 28-105mm f/4-5.6 USM lens. It was a very basic camera but perfect for learning how to create photographs and from that moment onwards I was hooked.
Throughout secondary school my fascination with Photography grew, it became the only thing I was interested in” Later came a 6x6 medium format camera and finally the move into the world of digital photography. I went on to study Photographic art at university, which after experimenting with various projects I realised that I would pursue a career that combined my two passions: Photography and Cars!
EVO magazine is recognised as being one of the finest magazines in the world for its quality of photography. EVO staff photographers photograph the most exciting performance cars on the most thrilling roads in the world so when the opportunity arose to apply for the job I did not think twice. I guess the answer to your question is that it takes dedication to improving your craft, an eye for detail and a huge passion for cars.
(Porsche spyder shot on Gavin pass)
You've done some pretty awesome shoots, across winding Italian roads, how do you capture such incredibly still shots of the cars whilst they're driving? There must be some special effects going on.
All of the car-to-car tracking shots you see within EVO Magazine are done by correctly organising the photograph. It is about choosing the appropriate stretch of road, communicating with the drivers and then it is down to the photographer’s technical ability to capture the shot. No special effects and no virtual rig software needed.
(lamborghini aventador sv in Island of man)
You've just come back from a shoot out in LA - what's it like flying all over the world for shoots - is it as glamorous as it seems?
Getting the opportunity to travel the world is one of the greatest parts of my job although the reality can be far from glamorous. We work incredibly hard to produce the highest quality content possible. Last Tuesday I was up at 5am for a 10-hour flight to Los Angelis, sadly I only managed to grab four hours sleep and once landed I spent the hole day photographing and didn’t eat until I’d got the last important shot. Extremely early starts, late nights and when possible eating breakfast, lunch and dinner from roadside service stations. Saying that occasionally if it’s a manufacturers lunch then yes it is all business class and champagne. When it’s all over and I’ve caught up with my sleep I always realise how brilliant it is, I’m very lucky.
(Alfa Giulia Quadrifoglio, BMW M4, Mercedes-AMG C63 S and Lexus RC F shot on St Bernard Pass)
Has car photography always been your thing?
Yes I have always loved to photograph cars. I remember one of my first shoots when I was fifteen was photographing my dads 1930s Aston Martin Ulster recreation, its was a brilliant day and all shot on my 35mm film camera. Every photo shoot gives me a new opportunity to challenge myself, refine techniques and capture something new. On a cold winters morning in Wales sat on the corner of the road and hearing the sound of an inline 4-cylinder 2 litre Alfaholics GTA-R 270 screaming towards you before taking the corner, well no other subject can put a smile on your face.
(pagani huayra bc shot in Italy)
Is there anything you love to shoot just for yourself?
I like to travel across the UK visiting new places with nothing but a film camera. There is still something special and nostalgic about a fully mechanical camera. I love to photograph landscapes using black and white 120mm film it is a relaxing and enjoyable process for me.
(nissan gtr track edition shot at millbrook proving ground)
If you could shoot anywhere with any car, where would it be and which car would you pick?
This kind of question gets out of control very quickly in a photographers mind! Let me think, how about a three-car GT racing celebration photo shoot including the Porsche 911 GT1, Mercedes-Benzes CLK GTR and McLaren F1 GTR ‘Long tail’. Location would be the world famous Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca and why not throw a helicopter to photograph from as well. Why have I chosen these cars and this location well that’s easy it would be epic.
(EVO Car of the year 2015 shot in Scotland)