Humor: Photographs of Cars with Their Namesakes

Art director Jim Lasser and his friend, photographer Ray Gordon, have a humorous ongoing photo project titled Namesake Motors. They observed that car makes and models often have names inspired by (or similar to) famous people or people groups, so they decided to shoot a series of images that play on words by pairing the cars with their namesakes (using the term very loosely).

The photograph above is titled, “Homer’s Odyssey.”

Adam Carolla’s Corolla

Alice Cooper’s Mini Cooper

Queen Victoria’s Crown Victoria

Lincoln’s Lincoln

Pontiac’s Pontiac

The Lone Ranger’s Ranger

The project got started after Lasser, who works in the advertising industry, spent a number of years working with the car companies Dodge and Chrysler on advertising campaigns. He tells Jalopnik:

I have always been interested in history, and began to wonder about the origins of some of the names of the cars. It raised a lot of questions for me: who was Chief Pontiac? Would Lincoln drive a Lincoln? What would Queen Victoria think of all these cops driving a car named for her?

I had the idea of staging these characters in classic (or un-classic) cars of their names. A photographer friend of mine in Portland, Ray Gordon, was someone I immediately thought of to capture this kind of thing. He loves cars and loves weirdo ideas like this. When I pitched him on it he loved it, but told me he didn’t want to just “talk about it”, he wanted to do it…so we did.

The two guys ended up gathering a number of other people to help with creating the characters (doing the hair, makeup, costumes, etc.).

A single person modeled for all of the photographs in the series: Lasser himself.

Lasser actually shaved himself bare for the Pontiac photo, and stood for an hour in public dressed as Queen Victoria.

He tells us that they’re going to create at least 5 more photos for the series in order to turn the images into a calendar. They’re open to ideas for the last five cars/characters. If you have any, leave a comment to let Lasser know!

Namesake Motors (via Jalopnik and TOP)

Image credits: Photographs by Jim Lasser/Ray Gordon and used with permission

  • Tommy Sar

    I feel sorry for the poor sap who had to pose for the atrocity that is the Aztek.

  • e_d_sanders

    Gotta go w/ a Gremlin/Gremlin

  • e_d_sanders


  • e_d_sanders

    Pilot/Pilate ;-)

  • e_d_sanders

    Edsel/ Edsel ( for real)

  • Burnin Biomass

    Cant wait to see an escort with an Escort.

  • Gary C

    Nice concept, horrible execution.

  • Dayne

    Beatle + VW Beetle

  • Dayne

    Cougar + Mercury Cougar

  • foggodyssey

    1) Fresh Prince of Bel-Air – Ford Bel Air
    2) Road Runner – Plymouth Road Runner
    3) President Gerald Ford – any Ford
    4) Audie Murphy – Audi
    5) The Beetles – VW Beetle
    6) Michael Cera – Oldsmobile Cutlass Ciera
    7) Santa Claus’s reindeer “Dasher” – Volkswagen Dasher
    8) Michael J. Fox or Jamie Foxx – Volkswagen Fox
    9) Highlander – Toyota Highlander
    10) Jane Fonda – Honda
    11) Magnum P.I. – Dodge Magnum
    12) Tony Montana – Pontiac Montana
    13) Rocky – Daihatsu Rocky
    14) X Men “Storm” – GM Geo Storm
    15) Taylor Swift – Suzuki Swift

  • Emil Chalhoub

    Shameful job; even though the idea itself was ingenious.

  • Trevor Coultart

    Skoda Yeti.

  • Persio Pucci

    Got to go with the Pinto! LOL

  • Rachel Kate

    Nice and original idea, but if you’re going to go through all that trouble at least learn how to take photographs. The lighting in this series is just absolutely horrible. What a waste.

  • Justin

    Ford Explorer = Dora the Explorer.

  • brob

    this could have been so much better

  • Nathaniel Young

    I hardly ever comment on anything here. But I felt the need to respond to your incredibly pretentious and assuming comment.

    Ray Gordon has shot for Nike, Powerade, Chrysler, Google, Sony BMG, Henry Weinhardt’s, Playboy, VANS, Drug Free America, Dodge, Bonfire Clothing, Wieden+Kennedy, Ad Age, Wilson Basketball, Capitol Records, Old Spice, Red Bull, Oregon Tourism, Qualcomm, Comune Clothing, EA Sports, Bolle’ Sunglasses, Warner Brothers, Toyota Yaris, FHM, Vagrant Records, Skull Candy, Solomon Shoes, Big Brother Magazine, Coca Cola, Blender Magazine, Miller Beer, Nixon Watches, NYLON Magazine, Publicis, and Sprint Mobile.

    All these folks seem to disagree with you.

  • Cynical

    Well it seems he assistants must be doing all the good lighting on those jobs then.

  • Richard Ford

    There’s 20 seconds I won’t get back. At least I will forget them quickly.

  • Andres Trujillo

    That may be the case, it doesn’t take away from the fact that the lighting on this pictures is pretty bad

  • Rachel Kate

    Yes, I’ve seen his portfolio and the list of clients he has shot for. The question is, why is this series so badly executed compared to what he’s shot for clients? The lighting and post are terrible. The look like they were taken with a reflector and a point and shoot.

  • mandyoliverio

    ok, hear me out the swedish chef (a stupid baker) with a studebaker

  • mandyoliverio

    or harrison ford with any ford

  • mandyoliverio

    or a football player from the rams with a dodge ram

  • mandyoliverio

    the red baron with a chrystler lebaron

  • mandyoliverio

    a transvestite with a trans am

  • mandyoliverio

    the marquis de sade with a grand marquis

  • mandyoliverio

    danny noonan from caddyshack with a caddy

  • mandyoliverio

    a winnebago with a winnebago

  • Nathaniel Young

    In all honesty I don’t think the lighting is that bad. Look at all his other work. In my opinion it fits his quirky and fun style and it appeals to me. Not to mention that we are all squabbling over a personal project in which it doesn’t matter what we think about the lighting or the project in general. He’s shooting what he wants. I applaud him for that.