Phase One Camera and Light Painting Workshop at the duPont REGISTRY

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For three consecutive decades, the name duPont REGISTRY has been synonymous with exclusive automotive buying and selling opportunities. We have successfully marketed and sold billions of dollars worth of high end vehicles, and as the premier luxury, exotic and classic automobile marketplace media source for 30 years, there are a few certainties we’ve come to learn.

There are key elements that equate to the successful sale of a fine automobile. Undoubtedly, the car itself is key, but its presentation relies very heavily on the quality of photography. To properly display a fine car in an eye catching fashion, the photographer must know the best techniques to use, angles to shoot from and aspects of the car to focus on.

One talented photographer we have had the pleasure of working with is Christopher “Flash” Garrison, a master of the aforementioned techniques and angles. A world-renowned commercial photographer, Chris has mastered the art of “light painting,” an in-depth and time-intensive process that produces absolutely stunning results. In January of 2014, he came by our headquarters in St. Petersburg, Florida, to use this technique on a Ferrari California, and the result, the photo below, does not disappoint.


Of course, just as important as a photographer who knows what they’re doing is equipment that can fully accommodate the photographer’s imagination and creativity. With this understanding, we began working toward raising the bar.

In January, after months of collaboration between Chris Garrison and Phase One Cameras, we extended the invitation to automotive photographers from across the country. We asked them to join us at our headquarters in St. Petersburg, Florida, and enjoy some time with three very special guests; the first, an impossibly amazing camera system. The second, a world-renowned photographer. The third, incredible horsepower wearing the lime green skin of a Mclaren 650S provided by our friends at Dimmitt Automotive’s McLaren of Tampa Bay.


From Michigan, to New York, to Naples, Florida, photographers from all over came together and spent a day learning from these guests and each other. It started with a cool but packed Cars and Coffee gathering, where each of the photographers stretched their legs and shutters to warm up for the day. Once the crowds had cleared out and the lots emptied, it was time for the first introductions.

The IQ250 Camera System from Phase One is, quite possibly, the single finest camera available for high quality photography. It features the widest usable ISO range of any high-end camera system, ranging from 100 ISO to 6,400, and anywhere in between. A unique CMOS sensor sized at 44×33 mm provides the capture engine, and can produce photos of up to 50 megapixels of resolution. Set the exposure anywhere from 1/4000 of a second to 60 minutes, then use Phase One’s Capture Pilot software to wirelessly transfer all of your photos directly to your iPad, iPhone or computer as they are being captured.


Essentially, the IQ250 is one of the finest cameras in existence, priced at $35,000-$40,000. The backs are crafted from 100 percent aircraft grade aluminum, while all ports and connectors are protected by rubber covers, making this camera tough and resistant to even some of the worst shooting environments. And if you don’t have a device to connect it to, you can still preview all your pictures on the 3.2″ touchscreen, which offers a stunning 1.16 megapixel resolution and 170 degree viewing angle.

But, of course, what use is a fantastic camera without a beautiful photo subject or the know-how to use it?

After receiving a quick introduction from Colin King of Phase One, it was time for a quick field trip to Dimmitt Automotive Group to find the perfect subject. Upon arrival, the group was granted access to the McLaren showroom, where three separate P1s were well lit and ready for their closeup. With personal cameras and IQ250s in hand, the showroom turned into a studio for a half hour, until it was time to borrow a lime green 2015 McLaren 650S for the remainder of the day. With a 3.8-liter twin-turbocharged V8 under the hood and the sporty aggressive styling of McLaren Automotive, this $329,889 vehicle was the perfect subject.


After the quick trip back to duPont REGISTRY HQ and a stop through Starbucks, it was time for a more in-depth tutorial about the IQ250’s abilities and a new technique. Action photographer Christopher “Flash” Garrison set everyone in a circle around the 650S, shut off the lights, grabbed his light wand and showed everyone how to paint. As he walked around the 650S with his Westcott Ice Light, long exposure shots were being taken, with each walk through highlighting a separate section of the vehicle.

To complete a light painting portrait, just as much time, if not more, needs to be spent in Photoshop as taking the photographs. The images are layered over each other until each combines their lit corner to create a fully illuminated, and brilliantly vibrant, final picture.


After a full explanation and demonstration of how to master this light-painting technique, which Chris Garrison has performed more than once in our showroom, it was time to get to work. Participants of the workshop were broken up and given their own IQ250 to experiment with, as well as a choice of cars to photograph. From official NASCAR racecars, to exotics wearing the name Ferrari, McLaren and more, the available selection was nothing short of what you could expect from the duPont REGISTRY.

On Monday, April 20, we will be unveiling the final pictures from the participating photographers. After a few weeks of intensive work, these are not simply photos – they truly are an art form, and each reflects the personality and individuality of the person behind the camera. Stay with us to see these stunning images that you will not want to miss, but in the meantime, browse through the gallery of behind-the-scenes photos below, and get a feel for what our next workshop will hold.