December 3, 2023

In early 2018, Tim McGovern, sophomore entrepreneurship and marketing double major, leaned out the window of his friend’s 2005 Toyota Camry with his camera on the freeway just outside of San Francisco.

On what otherwise seemed to be a normal day for commuters, a Lamborghini Aventador, Mercedes AMG GT-R, Viper and Corvette whisked ahead of them. Meanwhile, McGovern snapped pictures of the cars racing by at high speeds.

This event, known to automobile enthusiasts as a “freeway takeover,” occurred before the monthly “Cars and Coffee” meet-up at the parking lot of the local mall.

This was just a typical weekend for McGovern, who often attends hot rod, muscle car and vintage car meet-ups and is sometimes paid to create professional videos and photos for events.

“I’ve been doing photography and film pretty much as long as I can remember. One of the clearest memories I have is when I was 12 years old, running around shooting little action movies with one of my buddies in my yard,” McGovern said.

McGovern is mostly self-taught in a variety of creative fields and said he is often influenced by content on YouTube.

“I took a couple of classes for film and photography along the way, but most of what I learned was through tutorials online and going out and trying different techniques to see how it worked,” McGovern said.

Michael Eaton, professor of film studies and film production, has taught McGovern in several of his classes.

“His work is always well-shot and interesting to look at. He has always incorporated drone shots and competent camera movement into all the video that I’ve seen him do,” Eaton said.

McGovern said he looks toward creative outlets because his “hands hate sitting still.”

“I like everything computers, cameras and cars. I enjoy building things, taking things apart and putting them back together. I really like to just mess around with all sorts of things,” McGovern said of his interests.

McGovern warns, however, that photography and videography are not for everyone, as it can be a big financial investment to get started.

“Camera gear is really expensive; I’d say (it is) actually one of the most expensive industries (to break into). Lenses, bigger cameras, rentals and drones make it so easy to spend tens of thousands of dollars on equipment,” McGovern said.

Kevin You, junior business administration major, met McGovern in a microeconomics class and the pair later became friends after he tagged along with McGovern to car meets. He said he highly recommends working with McGovern.

“Working with Tim creatively is an awesome opportunity. Tim made this promotional video for our car club here on campus and it looked like it was shot and edited by a pro,” You said.

McGovern was instantly captivated by car meet-ups the first time he went to an event. 

“I was just so in awe of all the creativity, expression and the amount of fun everyone was having.”

You said that what makes McGovern stand out is his authentic passion  and care for both cars and film.

“What makes Tim so different is the fact that he genuinely cares about the things he shoots,” You said.

McGovern said he loves to combine his passion for cars and his passion for filmmaking and creative content.

“Cars and photo and video collided almost immediately for me. At the second car event I ever went to I grabbed my camera and said, “Hey, let me film whatever catches my eye,’” McGovern said.

This semester, McGovern continues to work on several different creative projects.

“I’m currently working on a documentary called ‘Lifestyle’ about being a part of the car community. Otherwise, I’m doing shoots here and there and working on improving my own project car,” McGovern said.

Check out more of McGovern’s work at or on YouTube and Instagram @timsperspective.

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