Last year, for the October issue of Wine magazine I was commissioned to shoot winemakers and their cars. 6 winemakers were selected and I was sent to shoot each. This was exciting, as it left me with some creative license, some brief in terms of layout and then two of my most enjoyable subjects: winemakers and cars. Perfect marriage? Possibly.
Andrew Gunn - Iona Wines: this is his first car he ever owned. A Porche. I decided on tracking. Getting to his farm near Elgin is a bit of a bundu bash, so I'm not sure the car gets a lot of road time out there! I was also not keen on missing out on the beauty of the surrounds. Unfortunately Wine mag decided on a posed image of them at his house. This was my favorite, though. I left with a fabulous bottle of Sauvignon Blanc that was enjoyed some months later with Rudi's Jagermeister or Blue Cheese Boerewors. Magic.
Gyles Webb - Thelema: the Mini Cooper S just shone like a jewel the moment we put lights on it, so we ended up with this baby. Initially I tried on-car tracking, but the point was missed, so we opted for the more styled approach. The winery in the back with the mountains full of ominous clouds also worked in my composition. Afterwards he entertained us to some coffee, talk on gardening, eco-farming and his golf handicap. (If memory serves me correct, he used to play from a scratch handicap.) I left with a Sauvignon Blanc and Shiraz. Magic.
Pierre Wahl - Rijks: for this shot I had to head out Tulbach way, with the ever present threat of rain following me there, but once there, Pierre and I quickly found a spot that showcases the farm and gave the image a proper English country estate feel. Oh, he drives a Z3 for fun. He bought it with his dad. Normally he travels by bakkie, like most winefarmers! I left with a Sauvignon blanc among other really killer wines.
Ken Forrester - Ken Forrester: Mr. Chenin himself was caught slightly unawares, as the car we were supposed to photograph, his 1976 Jag, was in for a serious panel job, but no worries, a 1950's BMW motorcycle was handy. I much preferred this anyways. Although he was dreadfully busy, he gave us such a nice time, and afterwards sat us down for a tasting of some incredible French Sauvignon Blanc (R400 per bottle ex Cellar) and entertained us with knowledge on viniculture, the fallacy of green Sauvignon Blanc's, stressing vines and traveling.
Pieter Ferreira - Graham Beck: I feel like Pieter is somehow embedded in my camera, so many times have I photographed him. Anyways, little did I know he owned a seriously old Citroen, he imported from France. One of those typical 1970's foreign film cars. Anyways, we met in Franschhoek and drove to Robertson for the sum-total of 30 minutes to do the shoot and then come back. Again, good fun. I don't recall leaving with Sauvignon Blanc.
Boela Gerber - Groot Constantia: Boela's little Morris Minor is a beauty, and would've been even more impressive had it been able to start and drive itself to the location. It had recently been flooded in the garage and left the engine with much damage. However, on a farm there is always a tractor handy and we were able to pull it to where it needed to be. Then there was the case of the baboons always lurking nearby being rather threatening. All in all, we had good fun and left with some really awesome Sauvignon Blanc, and a dessert wine.
Art directors. Please. Send me more assignments like these!