LOADING ...
People
19/06/2017

How to shoot the Prancing Horses

The F1 photographer Vladimir Rys explains why going for the risk is always the best option

The Official Ferrari Magazine: When did the photography bug bite?

Vladimir Rys: I started taking a real interest when I was 12, 13 years old. My grandfather used to be a professional photographer, but I never actually met him because he passed away when I was barely a year old. I started playing around with his old cameras. Then, when I was student, I got a job offer working for a sports newspaper, mostly covering football, but also figure skating, tennis, swimming, golf, any kind of sports. And then after a few years I was approached by an agency based in Germany, where they asked me if I wanted to try Formula One, because they thought my style of shooting images would be a good fit.

Sebastian Vettel in action at Monaco  Photo: Vladimir Rys

TOFM: Were you much of an F1 fan?

VR: I have to be honest, I didn’t have any great interest in motorsports, I hadn’t done any F1 work before, but I really think that probably helped me in a way. I was looking at it from an outsider’s view, it was all new to me, everything was there to be discovered. My first race was Australia in 2005, when I would have been 27.

 

TOFM: Did you start to really appreciate the sport once you started working on the F1 circuit?

VR: It sucked me in straight away. The sounds and the smell, the power and the noise of the engines. As a subject for photography, it was very challenging. I liked it. Every time you go back to a track, you improve as a photographer, because you know the place better, you know the corners, you know the best places to get the shot you want.

 

TOFM: You mentioned about your style suiting F1. How would you describe it?

VR: I tend to focus on the graphic elements of the image, the light and the colours, I like darker pictures. Nowadays in such a visual age, where you have Instagram and social media and everything, you have to be somebody who stands out a little bit, you really have to take a different approach to everyone else. Always go for the risk, sometimes you get a great pic, sometimes you get nothing, but it’s all part of the game.

 

TOFM: Were you always aware of Ferrari?

VR: Yes, of course. I always remember working with them for a Shell campaign. Jean Todt was in charge of the F1 team at the time, I was almost too scared to walk into the garage. The atmosphere in there was so intense, they were just so focused on winning. I was worried that I was going to stumble over a cable or something stupid like that.

King Juan Carlos of Spain greets Michael Schumacher  Photo: Vladimir Rys

TOFM: Do you have a particular favourite Ferrari photograph?

VR: I have a photograph of Michael Schumacher in 2006. It was at Barcelona on the starting grid. He was sitting there in the car, waiting to head off on the warm-up lap and I was trying to get a shot through the mirror, to get a reflection of his helmet and suddenly I see a hand coming into the frame. I didn’t realise until later that it was actually King Juan Carlos of Spain, reaching out to shake his hand. 



People
The American photographer tells us how he went from racehorses to Prancing Horses Read more 
10/04/2017
People
Photographer Paul-Henri Cahier chooses his favourite F1 shots Read more 
03/05/2017