Dan Wang has photographed everything from puppies to motorcycle gangs. But he had never photographed a vehicle before.
The fourth-year advertising photography student and Houston native’s first attempt at putting his commercial photography skills to work was at the Corvette Z06 Student Showcase Challenge held by Chevrolet to help introduce the new supercar. Wang won with 56 percent of the votes from the Facebook contest and was awarded $5,000.
The contest gave three New-York based college students the opportunity to shoot the 2015 Corvette before its public unveiling at the 2014 New York State Auto Show, which was held April 18–27. Their work was displayed at the show and posted online for voters to see.
Both a professor at RIT and a representative from General Motors approached Wang asking him to be involved in the contest.
He was given one day to create four dramatic images of the car. His goal was to make the Z06 photos aesthetically lifelike to portray what the vehicle would look like on the road or in an owner’s garage.
“Everything that I’ve been learning in the past four years at RIT culminated in what the challenge demanded,” said Wang. “In pre-production we had to plan on lighting with just a scale model and a few drawings of the car, and with only one day to shoot it was a bit frightening.”
Wang credits the help of his crew in making the images such a success. Two were former RIT students who are now working in New York City.
He plans to use the prize money to help fund some personal projects, including documenting an annual hot rod festival in upstate New York.
“I’m already ecstatic to have been part of the entire experience and be included in competition with two other amazing photographers from School of Visual Arts and Pratt Institute,” said Wang. “Winning for me is sort of like a cherry on top of an awesome learning experience, getting to work with the amazing folks from GM Creative Digital Imaging and a beautiful car.”