Patrick Hill Associate Editor
July 6, 2007

Horse Sense: For more on the Foose Mustangs, check out

So, you want to shoot your woman for Babe of the Month. Rock on! Sincethe first flathead Ford was stuffed into a car it was never meant for,hot women and hot cars have gone together like hot dogs and mustard,beer and baseball. Well, beer pretty much goes with anything (exceptdriving), but that's another story.

With the Babe of the Month contest becoming more popular with everyissue, the crew at 5.0&SF thought it was time to do a story with somehints and tips so you could shoot your girl with your car. As 5.0&SF'sresident photographer, helping the citizens of 5.0 Nation take betterBOTM pics was given to me. More often than not, potentially winningphotos end up in the BOTM reject drawer in Editor Turner's office (notto be confused with the black hole of the universe, Assoc. EditorJohnson's cubicle) because of some serious technical flaw. Sometimes,the pic is out of focus, underexposed, overexposed, or the girl justdoesn't look right. Many times we've looked at photos and thought, Ifonly the person had done this when shooting...

Thanks to (from left to right) Kara, Jenn, and Rachel for helping uswith our Babe of the Month shoot. These three ladies could make arusted-out Fairmont cover material!

With my mission clear, I went in search of appropriate subject matterfor this story. Enter the extremely beautiful and talented Jen, Kara,and Rachel. We met Jen and Kara at 5.0's favorite local eatingestablishment, the Winghouse in Brandon, Florida, where Jen and Karaserve wings, beer, and good cheer to the masses. Rachel is a formerWinghouse girl who now models and keeps busy with other things.

Now that I had the subjects, I needed a car to shoot them with. As luckwould have it, the two Chip Foose Mustangs built through UniquePerformance were at our offices after the Barrett-Jackson West Palmauction for evaluation. Hot women and hot Mustangs--do you notice thegeneral theme?

So, in the studio we went. Now, I know what you guys are grumblingabout--you don't have a studio and can't afford one. Well, don't sweatit. These techniques and tips apply to indoor and outdoor photography.And we're going to talk about outdoor shooting and things you shouldkeep in mind.

First, when taking a photo, try to fill the viewfinder with as much ofthe car/babe as possible. This makes the main subjects of the photovisible so they don't get lost in the background. Second, watch forcamera shake. When taking your pictures, try to keep the camera assteady as possible.

If you're using a film camera, have the negatives scanned at the highestresolution possible. If shooting with a digital camera, set the cameraat its maximum resolution. This makes the photos look a ton better andhelps on our end in case we have to tweak anything in the computer.

Outdoor Shooting

First thing on outdoor shooting--never shoot into the sun! This not onlycreates unsightly shadows that make your babe and car look bad, but itcan also wreak havoc with the camera's exposure of the picture. As arule of thumb, you always want the sun at your back, preferably at a45-degree angle to the car.

Try not to shoot between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. During the middle part ofthe day, the angle of the sun is high and directly overhead. This makesthe light on the car and girl flat. It also creates problems with "hotspots" on the car. These are places where the sun causes brightreflections on chrome bumpers, trim, polished wheels, and paint. At thistime of day, the sun creates lighting problems that can confuse thecamera and result in an overexposed/underexposed problem, and the sky is flat and uninteresting.

If you can only shoot during this "forbidden time," look for a placewith even shade. This helps reduce the problem with hotspots and canmake the lighting more desirable.

Also avoid shooting too early or too late in the day. If you don't haveenough light for a good exposure, the photo won't look good, especiallyif you have a dark-colored car. A good rule of thumb is, if the sun's lowenough you can't see it, it's too early or too late to take the photo.