After a successful test shooting I conducted another session at the old Continental factory premises in Hanover-Limmer. The protagonist of that shoot were Maike and her BMW R1200GS Adventure.
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It was a little rainy that day and the sand was wet. Not soggy, but a little wet so that the sand was not loose. Maike made a few rounds on the sand to familiarize herself with the terrain. In the meantime I set up my equipment.

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I used two flashes with an umbrella on a tripod. The flashes were triggered using my Yongnuo wireless triggers. The third tripod you see in the middle holds a GoPro, which was used to document the session. In the past I had problems with the umbrellas. They act like a sail and tend to trip over when a slight wind blows. That is why I brought two cloth bags, two plastic bags and a small shovel I borrowed from my children’s sandbox.

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I put the plastic bag into the cloth bag to protect the cloth from the moist sand and started shovelling. These improvised sandbags then acted as a weight for the lighting tripods.20160524-Offroad-Making-of-001
The idea was that Maike should drive in circles and each time she passed by my “flash trap” I could take an image. But at first we started with some “bike and biker” portraits. I used both the 70-200mm f2.8 as well as the 14-24 mm f2.8 lens for different image styles.

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20160524-Offroad-BMW-R1200GS-Adventure-001After completing the portraits I asked Maike to drive in circles and pass my “flash trap” for photos on the move. She did as instructed and I took multiple shots.

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There were some patches of loose sand and Maike had a small mishap as the bike topped to the left. But luckily the GS Adventure is outfitted with crash bars and protective shields for the boxer engine cylinders. Long story short – the bike is kind of armored and falling to the soft ground is not an issue.

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Lifting it up again somehow IS an issue. It weighs 260 kg fully fuelled, and the empty cases add a few more kilograms to it. But with the combined effort of Maike and me we managed and no harm was done.

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I worked both with the 70-200 and the 14-24 mm lens. A good perspective for the wide angle shots is from below, as close to the ground as possible.

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Timing is crucial. The bike passes only a narrow passage lit by the flashes, so you have to press the shutter button in the correct moment.

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