Alistair AroomugamFujifilm South AfricaTake TenX-CommunityX-H2X-T30X-UserXF10-24mm F4XF16-55mm F2.8XF35mm F1.4

TAKE TEN: Alistair Aroonmugam

Ever wanted to learn a bit more about automotive photography? Durban-based photographer Alistair Aroomugam believes it’s one the easiest genres to get into. We caught up with him to chat about all things cars, lenses and what’s on his wish list.

Alistair Aroonmugam

How did you get into automobile photography?

I always liked the idea of taking photos, back then using a cellphone, while also having a love for cars and speed (I purchased Speed and Sound magazines religiously). Fast forward to 2017 and my brother had purchased a DSLR camera. Me being the inquisitive small brother, I decided to take this camera to a local car show, and from there the bug bit. I wanted to know more, learn more, trying to better myself each time I got the chance to take photos.

What do you believe makes for a good automobile photograph?

It should captivate and make you feel involved, like you are there at the shoot or in that specific scene. Apart from that, colours are important to me. A well-balanced grade will always capture my attention. Finally, the right composition is important, automotive photography demands the photographer move around, giving different perspectives and allowing the surroundings to compliment the car/bike.

How does one get started in the field?

Honestly, automotive photography has got to be the easiest genre to tap into. I say this because there’s always automotive events (in Durban and other cities too), be it small or large. The hosts are always happy for photographers to capture content.

What’s the one thing that immediately improved your photography?

Good glass! For me this was a good 50mm. Eventually, I also discovered the benefits of a CPL (circular polarizer/linear) filter.

When and why did you switch to Fujifilm?

I took notice of Sherwin Pather’s images back in 2021. Everything about his work was just perfect, the colours were on point and the sharpness was mind boggling at the time. I kept asking questions about the brand and the different models, and in July 2022, I was ready to buy the X-T30.

However, Sherwin arranged with Photo Freedom Durban North to loan me the X-T3. Over the weekend I fell in love with the brand, the workmanship and the colours! There was no way I was leaving Photo Freedom without my own one when I was due to return theirs.

What camera and lens do you use most often?

I now own a Fujifilm X-H2, my go to Lens would be the XF35mmF1.4 R. The 35mm is that one lens that does miracles, signs and wonders. It’s the most versatile lens I have come across and its sharpness is amazing! In a nutshell – the 35mm doesn’t miss!

As for the X-H2, it’s a workhorse with so many features packed into this unit, from having 40.2 megapixels on tap to the very fact that when you hold the X-H2 in your hand, it just feels right.

You also do lifestyle and portrait work. What do you like about this?

I love lifestyle photography, more so events and weddings. I love the fact that I’m able to freeze time and capture those moments for people to relive at a later stage. It’s almost like having a superpower.

What’s on your Fujifilm wish list?

Three things:

  • A second camera body – either an X-T3 or another X-H2
  • The XF16-55mm F2.8
  • The XF10-24mmF4.

Choose one car to capture in one location.

Definitely a white 1995-1998 Toyota Supra 2JZ GTE (a fully modded one, of course) for a sunset/night shoot in the streets of Yokohama, Japan.

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