How to Photograph Car Interiors By Tim Wallace

1 hr 50 min

Have you ever wondered how to light the inside of a car when you hardly have any room to move? Wonder no more and learn from the best in the business! Join Tim Wallace and Scott Kelby as they show you step-by step how to light and shoot a car’s interior using a Porsche Panamera as the subject. The key to lighting is all about the angles, and once you get the lighting right it frees you up to just focus on nailing the best composition. You’ll get to see every step in the process through Tim’s eyes as he shares his secrets for setting up the lights, highlighting the important details, and finding the right camera angle to make each automobile look its very best.

Video transcripts available with a subscription.

Join Tim in the Kelby Training offices as he introduces the class and goes over what this class is all about.
There are many considerations to take into account in this type of shoot. Tim goes over the equipment he is using and why, and introduces Scott Kelby who will join him on the shoot.
Choosing your camera position is the first, and possibly most important, decision you will make. All other decisions fall out from there.
The placement of this light will provide the foundation to start building up the lighting for the shoot.
You want to evaluate your lighting by taking test shots and adjusting accordingly. Tim and Scott discuss the differences between shooting tethered or just using the LCD on the back of the camera. Once you have placed the light you can relax and focus on composition.
The goal of this second light is to add a bit of fill light to the main light inside the car.
The third light is just to add in a little more light in a few problem areas.
Commercially, the engine is included as part of shooting the interior. Photographing the engine brings a new set of challenges, which will vary widely based on the engine you are photographing.
Tim and Scott sit down with all of the photos from the shoot and discuss what works and what doesn't.
Tim and Scott finish reviewing the shots and wrap up the class with some stories for how to move forward.
You don't need a traditional photographic studio to shoot car interiors if you have the right approach.
Profile photo of Tim Wallace

Meet your instructor

Tim Wallace


Photographer Tim Wallace is the driving force and creative thinking behind Ambient Life. An award winning photographer his work is often described as both conceptual and dramatic. Tim works internationally with many high end brands and clients such as Aston Martin, Land Rover Jaguar and Morgan in the UK to Kenwood and Audi in the US. ...

Tim's Courses


Join the Discussion
  1. Profile photo of sonicedenstudios sonicedenstudios

    I was just wondering about white balance. The light from the strips on the outside of the car is coming directly from the front surface to the car. The light inside with the barn doors is bounced from a colored interior roof. Do you do a custom white balance after you have all the lights in place? If you shoot a similar car with a dark material roof would you consider fastening a white panel to it to get the light to bounce forward. Thanks in advance.

  2. Profile photo of

    Great instructor!

  3. Profile photo of dzman89000 dzman89000

    Is there any reason why the cars’ lights were left off? Seems it would look better with the gages backlit

  4. Profile photo of brianw brianw


    I’d stumbled upon Tim’s work when looking at some Aston Martin images and it lead me to sign up with Kelby Training to learn how the images were created.

    Tim’s instruction is so easy to understand and just by watching this course so many questions in my mind were answered.

    Money well spent. —- Yes, please post my feedback

  5. Profile photo of BSHOVELSR BSHOVELSR

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, when you watch and learn from Tim, you’re learning from the Master. His creativeness, knowledge and passion inspires me to continue my journey in achieving the highest level with my photography. Thank you TIm Wallace and Kelby Media for us. —- Yes, please post my feedback

  6. Profile photo of ludo bausmans ludo bausmans

    one of the best stuff here like it thanks kelby —- Yes, please post my feedback

  7. Profile photo of Jason Cox Jason Cox

    Awesome course!

    Never will I ogle beautiful cars the same after seeing this! And the cool thing is that most of us can at the very least try out some of these techniques on our own cars to see what we can do.

    Awesome! —- Yes, please post my feedback

  8. Profile photo of Ray Warren Ray Warren

    Brilliant! Very inspiring and I think the inclusion of Scott Kelby as the student was a stroke of genius. We all know Scott is no slouch when it comes to photography, but seeing how much more Tim knows about his craft put everything in perspective. I actually want to try shooting cars now and I didn’t before. Thanks guys. —- Yes, please post my feedback

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