5 Instagrammers Worth Following: December 29th Edition
Do anything for enough time and you’ll start to get a bit jaded; the process of habituation can be a slow crawl towards boredom or a quick realization that you were never that interested in the first place. And in the case of vintage cars, one might guess the “freshness” would have run out long ago—after all, they aren’t making new ones right? The stories have been told, the races have been run, markets have more or less matured, and if you think about it like this what else would you call it all but stale?
Obviously, we don’t subscribe to this idea. Cars—good ones—are timeless. Not necessarily in their engineering, and not always in their design either. It rests instead in their capacities to light up the parts of our brain that dump serotonin at the sound of cold-starting Colombo V12, grainy videos of Group B, or the first time you saw a 917 in the fiberglass. And when we aren’t experiencing these things in person, we have the Internet to share in the moments of the lucky ducks who are. I’ve heard a photo is worth quite a few words, so I’ll shut up and get to it: here is our final Instagram roundup of 2017.
Tom Wheatley is a freelancer, but he frequently works with Porsche to create scenes tugged straight out of our fantasies. Putting aside the incredible subject matter though, his commercial photography is just plain slick. There’s clearly a lot of time spent in post, but you can’t fake good composition, and whatever is touched up after the fact is only a supplement to the off-the-camera captures, not a transformation. His Instagram page also gives some behind the scenes peaks too, which I always enjoy as a way to break up the ultra-gloss magazine cover shots.
Juan Martinez has given his page a fitting name: “ishootclassic.” Right to the point, no nonsense. His photography follows suit, but I would never call it plain. It’s crisp, it’s true to life, it’s refreshing and it reminds me of a well-shot documentary—there are no tricks, but everything is presented with juuust enough of a kick to it to separate what you’re seeing through his camera from reality. The depth of field, the positioning under natural light, the touch of sharpening, it all comes together to form some intriguing imagery of some already-gorgeous machines.
It seems like a lot of people judge how talented a photographer is based, at least in some part, on how consistent their body of work is. Not necessarily in terms of what’s in front of the camera, but how they make it all look in the end. It doesn’t really make sense though, because one would assume if you’re skilled in general, you could ape plenty of “looks.” Michael Haegele is definitely one of the versatile ones, able to render neon nights and sunny poolside lounges in addition to pretty much any other style you could ask for. His account has plenty of cars in it, but in keeping with the diversity there’s all kinds of other scenes mixed in here too.
Willy Franklin Weston has a cool name, does cool things, and drives a cool car. He also happens to have a great eye for automotive photography, so it’s no surprise his Instagram profile is worth a look-through. In between the shots of the pretty patina of his orange ’02, he makes quite a few trips out to the Salt Flats in Bonneville to capture the people and the wild contraptions they’ve built in the pursuit of pace. There’s also a smattering of modded Japanese scooters, if you’re into that kind of thing. I certainly am, and even if you aren’t of the moped persuasion, the photos stand on their aesthetic merits alone, and add to the eclectic mix of content featured on his page.
Oliver Hirtenfelder is our “fifth spot” photographer this week, and while he does shoot some cars from time to time, I think its his travel photography that’s the most compelling. There’s a moodiness in his coloring, a slight sense of cozy loneliness in the way he frames things, and a great selection of black and white graininess that isn’t so much street photography as it is light and shadow shooting. I’m not sure if that makes sense—what kind of photo isn’t a mixture of light and shadow?—but take a look and tell me what you think.
Looking for a little of everything? Like vintage, period photos of Vespas in the rain but also want to see what a modern camera can do to a Ferrari 250 in the snow? Pop into the Petrolicious Instagram page from time to time to see what we’re up to and where we’d aim our time machine.