He & Me Goes Cross Continental for Volkswagen
Every year to celebrate the European soccer championships Volkswagen creates a series of Allstar Special Edition cars for consumers who love to show off their passions. They take their classic models and make unique rims and other details for hardcore soccer fans. It’s a huge range of cars, more than a dozen, and this year they asked photography duo He & Me to shoot both the campaign and brochures for the cars. For Tom Mennemann and Yona Heckl, it was a massive undertaking and an honor. “The project was huge. And for us it’s always great for us to do that because it’s the biggest campaign Volkswagen puts on the market,” says Tom. “It’s connected to the European soccer championships 2016 in France, and that’s why the location is Paris.”
Since they couldn’t bring all the cars into the heart of Paris and photograph them in a reasonable timeline (and without revealing the cars early), they broke the shoot into two different sections: creating the backgrounds in Paris and shooting the cars in Spain. In order to execute such a huge undertaking, Tom and Yona spent about six weeks shooting in Paris and Spain, photographing the 14 different cars and bringing everything together in postproduction. When every final image is composited from two photographs taken weeks and thousands of miles apart, there’s a lot of technical balancing that has to be brought into consideration. “It was a huge preparation in front of the whole shoot before going to Paris,” explains Tom. “You have to know what you do and you have to know where the light comes from. I think this is how we separate ourselves from the other guys because not everybody would be able to do it that way.” It’s a balance of organizing angles over an extended schedule, while staying agile for what looks good in the moment.