Photographing Cars at Indoor Shows

With the 2013 SEMA show in my rear view mirror I thought I would share some of my favorite images from previous shows. Automobiles come in all kinds of sizes, colors, and shapes making them ideal photographic subjects and on almost any weekend day±when thew weather is good—you’ll find a car show in your area.

Museums, indoor shows, and private collections are available whatever the weather but produce their own set of unique challenges, including color balance but more often than not exposure. Jay Leno’s jet powered Cadillac (below) was photographed with a Canon EOS 5D with anEF28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM lens (at 28mm.)

Jay Leno's Cadillac

1/160 sec at f/8.0 and ISO 800

Kirkham roadster

1/50 sec at f/6.3 and ISO 800

The Kirkham Motorsports 427 KMS/SC ( right) is different than most Cobra replicas because its body is made from aluminum instead of fiberglass. It was displayed with no paint, just its polished aluminum skin and if you look close enough you’ll see that a racing stripe has been etched into the metal—all of which only made getting the exposure a little trickier than normal.

I shot the image of the Kirkham Motorsports roadster using a Canon EOS 50D bracketing in one-third stop increments. The best shot (at least the one you see here) was one-third stop less than a “normal” exposure.

Author: Joe Farace

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