Cars and Cafe Meet – 2011-02-26

This past weekend was the monthly Orlando Automotive Club’s Cars and Cafe Meet at the Route 46 complex in Sanford, FL. This meet is always interesting because of the caliber of cars that show up. Many exotic and high-end cars are on display and there is always something for everyone there. While this month was a little light on cars, there were still some excellent vehicles on display, including a strong contingent of BMW’s from Brevard County.

Shooting at car shows presents several challenges as opposed to shooting a car in a photo shoot setting. Normally, a car is not in a location by itself. It becomes much more difficult to compose the shot so that it is alone. The areas behind the cars are not normally what you would like them to be. Lighting also becomes a problem. Besides not being able to control where the car is facing, most car shows occur outside of the golden hours of sunlight or on sunny days, producing harsh shadows. Because of these issues, more creative shots are often taken, emphasizing unique features or using unique angles.

This shot was of a very unique car. This Boxster Spyder is a stripped version of the standard Boxster. It looks like a blast to drive. I played with the composition of this shot to get it how it is. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get rid of the pole behind it.

This 911’s tail light looked really cool. I couldn’t find a good angle to snap a shot of the whole car, so I focused on this unique feature. The color of the car was striking.

These Corvettes were posing very nicely for everyone to see. It also provided me a good opportunity to compare the dramatic effect a CPL has on an image.

Without CPL:

With CPL

I really love 911’s, especially 996’s. This 996 was right by a 997 and loved how they were sitting. I couldn’t get far enough back to get them both fully in the shot and the lighting was not helpful for that. Later, I played with some sharpening techniques.

This image uses a regular unsharp mask:

This image uses a layer mask that was duplicated layer, embossed, and changed to a hard light mask. I toned it down a bit. I’m not sure which method I like better:

Here’s some BMW love, even though the lighting is a little harsh on the cars. A fill flash would’ve been a good idea here, but lessons learned.

And one final shot, this of my E46.

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About spngr311

Photography. Cars. Surfing. My life.
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