When this shoot began with my friend and photographic Padawan Michael—with his alluring chariot, the Audi S5—we put a great deal of effort into setting up for the sunset. We decided that was when we'd get our shot, and so we turned up early to get a feel for the location beforehand. The results weren't terrible, but they lacked the magic that it was possible to convey when that easy visual interest provided by a sunset is snatched from us. After that we were forced to get a little more creative.
This shot was set up thusly: Camera on a tripod, remote released with a long enough exposure for me to manually pop the flash three times in three different places; once behind the car and overhead, once from just in front of Michael to light him, and once to strike the front of the car. It was an image I could be proud of right out of the camera. All it needed in order to be ready for other eyes was a quick removal of some distracting background elements and a subtle boost of the shadows/recovery of the highlights on the car.
My big takeaway from the shoot: if you're going to have someone as a part of the scene, don't just let them stand anywhere; have them pose in a way that adds to the image and allows the viewer to connect with them. Images with Michael standing straight with his back against the car looking off into the distance looked boring and unnatural, but when I got him seated in a more interesting position, feeling and looking comfortable, things improved dramatically. I'll never underestimate model direction again!