Photographing Vintage Auto Americana, with Bill Fortney

Join outdoor photographer and author Bill Fortney for an immersive trip through vintage auto Americana as he explores over 6 miles of trails filled with old cars, trucks, and the many other things that can be found at Old Car City, located about 45 minutes outside Atlanta, GA. There are classic treasures at every turn and Bill walks you through his gear, philosophy, and techniques for shooting on this kind of special self-assignment. From wide environmental portraits of a rusting DeSoto to up-close and personal gritty macros of decaying hood ornaments, Bill digs deep and shares from his wealth of tips and tricks to inspire you to get out to your nearest junkyard and have your own photographic adventure.

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Course Lessons:

Lesson 1: Introduction (Duration 04:44)

Bill Fortney is joined by Dean Lewis, the owner of Old Car City, and they share a bit about what makes this place such a great destination for photographers.

Lesson 2: Gear Talk (Duration 05:51)

Bill shares his thoughts on his gear choices, from camera bodies to lenses, for this type of self assignment.

Lesson 3: Old Car City Office Shoot (Duration 09:40)

The first stop on the journey is the old office for Old Car City. It is a target rich area, and Bill uses it to describe his way of getting started working on location.

Lesson 4: Zoom in on Detail (Duration 08:46)

In an environment like Old Car City there is ample opportunity to get in close on various details and graphic elements.

Lesson 5: Extremely Shallow DOF (Duration 04:20)

Shooting close up with a wide open lens can create a really shallow depth of field for making subjects pop out of the out of focus background.

Lesson 6: 1937 DeSoto (Duration 07:31)

Coming across a classic DeSoto provides a number of different shooting opportunities.

Lesson 7: Ford Super DeLuxe (Duration 04:39)

Tucked away in the woods this Ford Super DeLuxe is full of character, and Bill shows how he shoots a wider environmental portrait before zooming into a tight shoot on the grille.

Lesson 8: Think in Themes (Duration 06:18)

There are so many different types of things to shoot in a location like this that it can really help you focus if you come up with a theme for what kind of shots you want to get.

Lesson 9: Image Processing (Duration 13:03)

After the shooting is done Bill walks through some of the images he's captured and discusses his post-processing techniques.

Meet Your Instructor: Bill Fortney

Bill is one of America's premier photographer's specializing in Landscape, close-up, nature, Americana, and travel. In his 44 year career, Bill has been a High School teacher and football coach,…


  1. Bill, thank you for yet another awesome class. You never cease to amaze me with the wealth of knowledge you possess. For the short time I have been following you/your work I have learned a great deal. Thank you once again and keep them coming!!!

  2. Wonderful course. Bill has the gift of connecting with his audience with his personality and his approach to capturing very interesting photos. He makes learning plain fun.

  3. Terrific job Bill!! I always enjoy your instruction. You have such a good way of teaching and I always enjoy watching you capture some amazing images and how it's done. Keep doing the videos! I love them!!

  4. Bill Fortney delivers an information packed training session in a most enjoyable environment. The autos in Bill's training session are remarkably different than the cars Scott Kelby has been shooting ;-) The location, the gear, the advice and the photographic result make this a very enjoyable and information training session. Thank you Bill for the training session!

  5. Bill's class was outstanding, I love classic cars having recently photographed the Woodward Cruise here in Michigan. Bill has a unique style and during his presentation I kept thinking "great idea" and "why didn't I think of that". Thanks Bill!

  6. That was great! Really informative, I'd love to go to that place now that I know it exists. I'm going to a junk yard next week and your tips will really come in handy

  7. Very good! Thank you, Bill. I would like to go there. The format of this seemed to work better. A good balance of demonstration and discussion. I especially liked the processing section at the end. I"m starting the like the very saturated pseudo-HDR look more.

  8. Thanks, Bill! I had attempted to photograph a few old cars in the past without much success. I think now that I will go back and try again!!

  9. First the Olympic Forest and now old cars. The tips are amazing (as well as the photography). Thank you for taking the time to share your knowledge as good teachers and photographers always do. I look forward to visiting Old Car City and discovering the many photographic surprises that await me. Please continue to make the training videos for Kelby One so that we all benefit from your wonderful teaching style.

  10. Bill, how about a video on shooting all kinds of vintage mechanicals? Motorcycles and tractors are big at least here in the MIdwest...oh and by the way take me to Old Car City...beg, beg, throw money and grovel. :)

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