David Martin uses a wheelchair. He is a mechanic and a business owner.

Mechanic in Wheelchair Cover Shot

This is the type of assignment I love. Plenty of time, a budget, an art director (Rick at R Squared), willing models and a primo location.

David Martin runs Martin’s Auto Repair in Phoenix. He’s one big dude who makes his wheelchair look incredibly small. Somewhat eerily, the art director and myself both know David and both were thinking he’d be ideal for this project.

We scouted his shop and all agreed to meet on a Saturday morning. He explained that the bays might be empty or have a car on Saturday. Because we had plenty of time I didnt fret what we’d get for cars and open space on Saturday knowing we could return if we came up short.

On arrival we had one car up on the rack and in the corner one dusty old red Midget. I knew immediately what I wanted to shoot first. The little red sportster made David look even larger than he is plus it offered a perfect color contrast with his shirt and the flag emblem. The stars were lining up.

This shot is probably one of the first ten we created. We dabbled a bit with the background ambient light and with his props. I worried the blue lift would be a distraction so we raised the primary beauty dish and pointed it almsot straight down. In post, I did reduce the background light some on the lift but raised it on the walls and shelves. The only real photoshopping was to enhance the Midget. I gave the paint considerable shine and removed imperfections. Using a mask, I played with numerous Topaz filters. The before and after of the headlight are pretty remarkable.

We shots all morning. Probably 5 setups and near 700 images. Hard work but in the end it was a success.
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