Auto-city report: Super GT Roadshow 2009.


Once again I would like to thank Andy for the invite as an OP for this event, had a blast! Sorry I couldn’t make it for the last day (Sunday) as I was too tired from Friday and Saturday. I would also like to thank CC for the taking on the job as a translator/interpreter between us.


The crowd was enormous that Friday night during the official launching.


There was a lot of ground to cover and the heat (36 Celsius) did not make it any easier. On the plus side at least sky was clear and clean unlike KL.


Yes, it definite that the crowd was only waiting for one thing, the Super GT ambassadors Yuuki Sana and Nana Shibata!


That weekend, we had a horrible battle of white balances due to the endless changes of stage light color which made getting the right color from each shot right off the camera setting a very difficult task. At one point I really which I had packed my Fujifilm s5 pro instead, would have had a much easier time instead of guessing. Tip here, there are another ways to combat such situation but it relies on making some sacrifices,

1. Shoot Raw
so the white balance won’t be an issue at all since you can adjust in post. This is the safest bet if you don’t know how to deal with white balance and the Auto balance is unable to handle white balance at the time the shot was taken properly. The drawback of this method is that you’ll be wasting enormous amount of memory space and spending considerable amount of time in post.

2. Time the lights
In this method, you set your white balance to one specific light color and then take shots only when the color light you want comes on (this is only effective for ever changing stage lights). Drawback of this technique is that you may missed some important shots. Do not use this technique, I’m just listing it here. Instead just use the shoot raw method instead.

3. Use flash
This is the preferred method of event shooting especially if you’re working a night base event like I did. Set your white balance to flash and then use a flash but make sure your flash power is set correctly or else your shots will be overexposed or underexposed. Drawback of this method is that you need to be able to gauge the correct power level for your flash and no, ttl (Through The Lens) mode is only correct 40% of the time.

The final alternative is to shoot a high speed ISO film (not bloody likely) rated at say 1600. You can use ISO 800 but I wouldn’t recommend it, it might not be fast enough.


Anyway moving on here we have Sana and Nana (tapi mana Sini?)

The performance by the girls were great and after that there was lots of speeches by the bigshots (ZZZZzzzzzz -_-)

Soon it was time for the girls to make their rounds and promote each stall that night. Fuminari, Ckvin and I were tasked with following them along with the walk.
We had to keep ahead of them and we also had to keep the other photographers (non-OP) from blocking our way.
Damn it was hard as the girls were a fast bunch and carrying out all our gear was severely slowing us down.
Anyway the girls were headed to the nearest Pizza hut for a short break (@_@, we needed it as well). At this point Andy’s group was covering the stage event. Here are some shots of the girls

Yeah we seriously always need a shot like this ^_^

An interesting observation I noted was that Japanese don’t like Mushroom soup, I was informed of this by CC when the girls told him they find it a rather weird dish and avoided it. Although they did like the pizza hahahahaah XD.

After that light break , it was time for the SOHO club >_<

The club was packed and the music was heavy! The girls gave another performance there, Fumi and I went to the top of the stage to get high angle shots while Ckvin went to stage front, you can see him right there in front. You can see the swarm of GWCs there as well.
Another thing I would like to bring up, ISO 64,000 and above is over rated. That clucb was pretty dark save for a few neon lights but even at ISO64,000 on my D700, all of my shots were still underexposed!
Anyway, after that it was time to swap duty. So now we were assign to cover some of the activities there namely covering the SOHO fashion show.

It was a pretty good event with lots of great shots.


And that’s how the first night ended. The next day we were task with covering the go cart race (yawn~~~~ -o-). It was rather boring.

The girls would only be coming at 4pm but man, when the girls arrive, they bring life to the crowd!
Also if you were there that weekend and were one of the many photographers trying to get a shot of the girls, please take note that OP needs to get the shot first as its our job, after that you can take the shot.
Don’t try and block us like one guy did and wouldn’t leave till someone had to removed him. (Personally I think we should have more security personal helping us here).
We also had people impersonating OP trying to get pass bouncers ¬_¬ bub, don’t even try that. Another funny incident was when they kept sneaking back stage, oh hell even we didn’t have permission to go backstage to where the girls (local ones) were changing outfits.
We had to keep ejecting these jerk balls, g3k reported that he had to remove the same guy over 8 times! who kept sneaking in! Had it been I, I would have had the guy escorted off the damn premisses!

It was more or less the same thing that day as well. So I passed along my wide angle lens to Ckvin who needed to cover a lot of wide shots while I switched to my 70-200mm f/2.8 lens for some overdue close up shots.

I really like how this shot turned out it really captured the mood for me.

They did a number of more performance and called it a night. Although there were other shows like the miss GT queen competition as well as the manhunt contest as well.


The girls instead decided to stick around and enjoy the show as part of the audience.

The rest of the night involved taking photos of the GT queen and manhunt competition. I’ll post those some other times. Here is a shot of the miss autocity of 2008! Enjoy!
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