Photographing AMA Pro Superbike Racers
Huntley Nash: Feature #2
Getting up before dawn has never been a strong virtue of mine, yet any time I have a shoot, I’m up and out the door with coffee in hand.
Such was the morning I wanted to photograph AMA Pro Rider, Huntley Nash, of LTD Racing at Road Atlanta in Braselton, GA. for a iconic environmental portrait at sunrise. Armed with a couple Think Tank Photo cases full of cameras, lenses, lights, umbrellas, softboxes, and lots of backup equipment, I drove with a couple of friends to the track to meet Huntley with his custom Ducati 1199 Panigale.
We ran the gear onto the track and I quickly set to work extending stands, lights, connecting the strobe to the generator, and opening up my Paul C. Buff 86″ parabolic umbrella. That last part didn’t go so well as the big umbrella caught the first small gust of wind and turned inside out, making the silver umbrella completely useless. Bummer. Of course I had brought a couple backups, and grabbed my usual #1 go-to softbox: the Westcott 43 inch Apollo Orb Speedlite. Brilliant. Quickly set up a second light to the side with my Westcott Micro Apollo 2200, and let the sunrise be the back light.
An efficient set up with a few quick light tests took about 5 minutes and we were ready for Huntley to stand in the shot. We only had a few minutes on track and we captured a selective variety of poses with just a couple moments at the end to have Jon Schiereck, the Ducati’s builder and master tech, stand in for a portrait as well.
Quick gear note for my fellow photographers: I used my Think Tank Photo Airport AirStream™ Rolling Camera Bag and BlackRapid Kick Women’s Sling Camera Strap RS2SW1S (Grey) for this shoot.
My post-processing is all done in Lightroom 4 using my own custom recipes made with Totally Rad!’s Lightroom Presets, Totally Rad!’s Replichrome I: Icons, with a final polish in Photoshop CS5 using more custom special sauce with Totally Rad!’s Pro Retouch + TR Action Mix 1 + TR Action Mix 2: The Revenge.
MY CAMERA GEAR FOR THIS SHOOT:
Think Tank Photo Retrospective® 7 (Blue Slate) iPad and Shoulder Bag