First Gold Award for Automotive Photography


For the last two years I have entered the Guild of Photographers Image of the Month (IOM) competition that runs from January to October.


During this time (despite not exclusively concentrating on automotive images in the first year) I have been awarded 19 Bronze & 3 Silvers Awards for my automotive photography, but the highly sought-after Gold Award eluded me until September 2021, whilst I was holidaying in Scotland.


The 25th of the month is results day (for images entered the previous month), and whilst eating at The Seafood Shack in Ullapool, I eventually remembered to log on and check my results and was amazed to see that my aerial image of the stunning Audi R8 V10 Plus car, parked in an empty car park had been judged good enough to receive a Gold Award!

One of only 6 awarded for August out of over 1200+ images!

Aerial Photograph of a Blue Audi R8 parked in an empty car park

The idea for this image came to me one evening whilst lying in bed, trying to get to sleep.


I knew that if I was able to find a car park that was relatively new, that the car park surface would be really dark and that this would complement the stunning Sepang Blue Audi R8.


I located a suitable car park, and it was then a case of waiting for the right time and weather conditions. That time came early one particularly sunny Sunday morning whilst most people were still fast asleep.


The car was put into position and then the relevant photographs taken with a DJI Mavic 2 Pro Drone.


There was then minimal post work carried out on the image in Lightroom and Photoshop.


Car Photography is certainly a passion of mine with 2021 being a standout year for me, personally.

I certainly intend to continue my development over the coming months and years.

To me an automotive photographer should always aspire to be original and think outside the box to create outstanding automotive images.

The good news keeps on coming!

In December 2021 I found out that this same image (above) had been shortlisted as an Image of the Year Finalist 2021 in the ‘Urban Category’!

The Annual awards evening for the Guild of Photographers is in February this year, so I’ll find out then if this image will win any further awards.

Carl Simpson-Smith - Image of the year finalist