Before allowing reporters to photograph the brand new 2015 Corvette Z06 Convertible, General Motors (GM) offered three students—including Mike Finkelstein (B.F.A. Photography, Class of ’14)—access to shoot the car.
Each participant selected their four best photos for the public to judge in an online contest, which ran through April 23. As part of the competition, Finkelstein was flown to GM headquarters in Michigan to speak with the company’s creative team. Then, he was given exclusive time to photograph the Corvette at the 2014 New York International Auto Show. Despite having never photographed a vehicle before, Finkelstein created striking images of the Corvette that are both unconventional and classic in several ways. Finkelstein says his philosophy for photography is to show how the process affects his subjects’ appearance. He references the history of the photographic medium by intentionally creating light leaks and leaving dust on the film.
For the Z06 shoot, Finkelstein used traditional techniques to bring an innovative look to the car, and the resulting images garnered attention. Although Finkelstein did not win the competition, he received kudos from Stephen Gray, creative manager, GM North America Design, for his artistic choices.
“Mike took a risk in shooting on film in today’s world of digital photography, but it paid off,” said Gray. “The result is a unique set of shots that have history to them, just like the Corvette itself. Mike’s shots are highly emotional images where the vehicle looks alive.”