A Ride to Remember – Frame The Star Photography Challenge 2022



Frame the Star challenge is back! The unique automotive photography challenge turned on the heat this season. A celebration of the city-car interaction, the challenge aims to give photographers a space to be innovative and showcase their skills using the luxurious cars from Mercedes-Benz as the center of attraction. The third edition of the Frame the Star officially kicked off on 24th May 2022. Helmed by Mercedes-Benz, Better Photography and Overdrive, it invited photographers from across the country to creatively represent automobiles.

Phase 1 or the Online Challenge
In the first phase of the challenge, participants were asked to submit photographs of any four-wheeler of their choice, including public transport. The two themes were… ‘The Car in the Urban Landscape’, and, ‘View from Inside the Car’. Phase one saw thousands of photographers submit their interpretations of the themes. Out of these, four finalists were selected and moved on to the next phase of the challenge – The Face Off.

The deserving finalists were – Purnendu Kodwani, Syed Danish, Mahesh Kumar and Pranav Prabhakar.

Phase 2 or the Face Off
In Phase 2, the finalists were joined by 12 specially invited photographers for an ultimate finale. Planned in two parts, the 16 participants faced off against each other – first in Mumbai (4 – 7 July 2022) and then in Chennai and Puducherry (22-26 July 2022). Their only objective, to creatively capture the unique features of the sleek Mercedes-Benz A-Class Limousine and the sporty Mercedes-Benz GLA 200. It was a race against time for the 16 photographers as they each aimed to bring out their distinct style in their images.

Stormy Showdown in Mumbai

Participants in action at Mumbai

Participants in action at Mumbai

The first leg of the Face-Off challenge was held in Mumbai and it started with a thunderous boom (quite literally!). It saw 8 participants brave the Mumbai streets, chaos, and tumultuous monsoons as they drove around the city to creatively showcase the two cars, Mercedes-Benz A-Class Limousine and Mercedes-Benz GLA. Drenched, stuck in traffic, with limited assistance, and glances from the milling crowds, the eight photographers roamed the unknown lanes of the City of Dreams to weave story of the car and the city. From heritage lanes of South Bombay, and the urban forest of Aarey, to the windy cliffs of Malabar, and the busy piers of Bandra, each photographer brought a fresh perspective to the city-car interactions. While some highlighted the luxurious cars, others focused on how these cars interacted with the busy Mumbai streets.

Romancing Chennai and Pondicherry

Participants Shooting at Chennai & Pondicherry

Participants Shooting at Chennai & Pondicherry

After a rain-soaked first leg of the Frame The Star Challenge Face-off round in Mumbai, the Face Off challenge moved to its second leg in Chennai and Pondicherry. From the changing weather to blocked streets, curious bystanders to deliberate photobombers, the photographers rode through roads, both old and new, to creatively showcase the uniqueness of the Mercedes-Benz A-Class Limousine and Mercedes-Benz GLA and how they fit in various urban terrains. The photographers went through a journey of discovery as they drove through the east coast, remote towns, alongside beaches and lesser known but culturally rich sites. Some drifted, others took to the skies and few even broke stereotypes to frame the luxurious cars as they interacted with the cities of Chennai and Pondicherry.

The Big Reveal
After days of judging, deliberations and discussions, our judges Mr Mukesh Parpiani, photojournalist and head of Piramal Gallery, Krishna Madhvan Pillai, editor of Better Photography and Bertrand Dsouza, editor of Overdrive magazine have chosen the deserving images and photographers who won the challenge. The winner will get a chance to be part of an all-expense paid trip to AMG Winter Drive Experience in Europe and be part of a video assignment by Mercedes-Benz India. Two runner ups will also get a chance to work on a photography/video content assignment for one of the key products of the year for Mercedes-Benz India. Turn the pages to get a glimpse at the winner and runner ups of the  Frame the Star 2022 edition!


Purnendu KodwaniPurnendu Kodwani @purnendu.deo
25 years, Bhopal
Commercial photographer and filmmaker, Purnendu is no stranger to creatively highlighting the most unique aspects of a subject. An artist to the core, he started photography to help provide for and market his band. As a finalist from Phase 1 of the challenge, Purnendu was excited to get creative with his favourite car brand.

“The challenge took me back to my photography roots, had me thinking on my feet and greatly inspired me… Mumbai has the finest architecture and is the hub of sports and luxury cars. I personally feel Mercedes gets along with the vibe of Mumbai’s urbanscape.”


Jerin Joseph GeorgeJerin Joseph George @_born_2_capture
22 years, Alappuzha

Automotive Photographer Jerin was fascinated by cameras from an early age and started photography during eighth grade.He has experience working with various genres of photography and has a strong dedication to his vocation. His fascination for automobiles doubled his excitement for being part of the challenge. For him, Frame the Star is a platform where he could showcase his passion and perspective to a more diverse audience.

“I wanted to bring out the different terrains of Pondicherry and its serenity. It is quite reminiscent of the comfortable silence the Mercedes offers as it glides through the street.”


Manas Godara Manas Godara @manasgodara
23 years, Mumbai
Freelance cinematographer and photographer, Manas started photography while still in college. As a street photographer, he found the challenge to be fresh, exciting and unnerving at the same time. The challenge was an adventure for Manas, who captured unique frames and gave innovative perspectives to the cars.

“The cars from Mercedes-Benz are like beautiful beasts prowling on the city roads. Both the GLA and A-Class fit perfectly with the fancy buildings as well as the urban forest. Through my photographs, I wanted to capture the comfortable adventures they promise.”



Sudden climate changes to roads unknown… these photographers put their creative foot forward to bring out the best of the Mercedes-Benz cars and its urban surrounding. Here’s a glimpse of the images by the remaining challengers at Frame the Star…

“The cars had a sleek design and excellent ground clearance, making them a perfect fit for the narrow city lanes. Their beauty was enhanced when they were set against the culturally rich architecture of Chennai.”
Rishika Brahma, Kolkata.
Wedding and People Photographer.

“The challenge was like a symphonic orchestra that I was in command of. Mumbai is the city of dreams, with fast-paced life and scarcity of space, the A-Class and GLA stand out without looking out of place.”
Rushikesh Ware, 
Software engineer by day, content creator by night.

“I enjoy working with different materials and discovering how they work in diverse environments, so I was keen to showcase the car features and highlight how they worked in different urban landscapes.”
Ashima Raizada, Chandigarh.
Art/Conceptual Photographer and Photo Editor

“I was inspired by every interaction that the Mercedes had with the streets, the people and the city. I wanted to capture how the cars enhanced the feel of culture and beauty of the cityscape. It was like poetry in motion.”
Nilanjan Ray, Kolkata
Banking Professional and Photographer

Disclaimer: All photographs are the personal perspectives of the photographers participating in the Frame The Star Challenge. Mercedes-Benz, Better Photography, OVERDRIVE do not endorse or support any form of violation of traffic laws, littering, or the promotion of any any specific religion, or ethnicity, or of any associated symbols, within these photographs.

Tags: mercedes benz, frame the star, mercedes benz A class, The Mercedes-Benz 'Frame The Star' Challenge is back, FTS2022, frame the star photography challenge, Mercedes-Benz GLA