This last Saturday I finally got the chance to go to the Cars and Coffee meet on Treasure Island in San Francisco. Cars and Coffee San Francisco is a monthly (weather permitting) Car meet with the types of cars their ranging from high end exotics (Such as McLarens, Ferraris, Lamborghinis, Porches, and many more), to tricked out Ice Cream Truck style cars, to cheaper cars that people, who care as much about their cars as I do my camera, put every spare penny into and are proud to show, despite the fact that they aren't showing up in a high end car. They charge $10 a car to park in the event, and all of the profits go to the Gum Moon Women's Residence and Asian Women's Resource Center. If you get their early enough there is usually enough room to park on the street. It's really a cool environment with a ton of cars and even more people. I saw people ranging everywhere from babies who couldn't walk, to elderly people enjoying the car filled morning. It truly is a family event. They had a few food trucks as well as, of course, coffee. CHP also has a booth with a car and motorcycle on display and helps with traffic and guiding people to the show. They also help keep the event under control since their are several of them, along with the San Francisco Police Department, walking around the whole event. It's an extremely well organized event and an awesome trip to make many times if anyone in your family is even just slightly interested in cars.
My car adventure started around 4 a.m. as I had to make the venture from Antioch to Cal Maritime (Vallejo) to pick up my friend Alex. We had a goal to be on treasure Island by 6:15-6:30 as the event started at 7 a.m. and we wanted to get shots of the cars we liked driving down the road into the event (like the Lotus shot) and luckily, a Dodge Challenger was parked on the side of the road long enough for me to get one of my favorite shots of the event. We got their early enough to get the closest street spot to the event, their was maybe five or six exotics getting set up, they were just getting their coffee booth up, and CHP was setting up their booth.
Alex and I started walking down the Avenue Of Palms to get sup up in the positions we wanted. I had never taken car photos before, and Alex has been to many car shows and track days, so he gave me several pointers and I dialed in fairly quick. I had never panned (the type of shot the lotus is, it involves a really slow shutter speed and following the car so you get a sense of movement in the photo) so it took me a little while to actually get use to it, but it paid off! I still have a lot of improving to do, which means I'll definitely be back to more shows, and maybe even make it to a track day or two!
After spending the first half hour to forty-five minutes of capturing these pan shots, we decided to head into the show. There were still lots of cars arriving but the event was also filling up pretty quickly which meant getting cool shots of the cars was going to be exceedingly difficult. Alex pointed out that this would be a really good chance to get nice detail shots of the cars. While Alex's came out awesome, I was a little disappointed with mine. I was out of my comfort zone and to be one hundred percent honest, I had no idea how to capture detail shots of the car that truly captured the beauty of them. I tried my best and will have to get to another show to practice some more! Alex had definitely done this more then I had.
After the show was over, Alex and I had the opportunity to head over with some of the Exotic cars and get some photos outside of the car show environment. They parked them with the Eastern Span Of The Bay Bridge in the background. There were lots of photographers that came and it was really nice to not have to deal with people in the background and having to worry about people with cell phones trying to get pictures. The only sad part about the photoshoot is the fact that it was at noon, which meant harsh sunlight, and made pictures hard to get since we were shooting into the sun. Luckily for me, the cars snuck off as if they were going to get loaded back onto the semi for transport back to their garage, although they were really headed to the back of the warehouse to get some more serious pictures.
There were only about 20 serious photographers at this new warehouse location, so it made shooting these cars way more enjoyable. We spent about an hour, maybe a little longer in total, shooting these gorgeous cars. Almost all of my favorite shots were from this time, and it was really cool comparing all the different shots everyone got, even though we were shooting the exact same car in the exact same position. Once the cars started to disappear, Alex and I decided to head off to get some food. We went to a little pizza place in Oakland called The Leaning Tower Of Pizza, which is awesome! If you're ever in that area of the bay you should check it out! The pizza was super delicious and you could tell it was fresh and hand made! It is definitely a must try spot! Overall, My Saturday was a totally awesome experience that I needed, and I totally can't wait to go back!