Old 09-13-2008, 12:50 AM   #26
mark woody
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JRMDC
It does have an odd look to it but as far as I can tell everything is OK. The line dividing light and darker can be non-level if what is forming the line is not perpendicular to the line of sight of the camera, and to my eye that is the case here. The left end of the line is on land considerably closer to the camera than the right end. The top of the mountain ridge is, broadly speaking (because is isn't a flat ridge), horizontal. The lead engine looks vertical, as do the vertical droppings on the inside of the left rail.

Overall, to me it looks like an optical illusion that is actually properly leveled. But it certainly has a strong feel of tilt to it!
I agreee with you both it looks tilted but the fence posts on left and right and a white xing sign just behind the engines look ok.
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Old 09-13-2008, 02:08 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by J Douglas Moore
I am not a true railfan, I just like trains.
If you like trains, you're a railfan. You may not be as knowledgable about trains as some people, but that doesn't mean you're not a "true" railfan.
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Old 09-13-2008, 05:58 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ccaranna
Wait, I'm confused; was the shot in this quote resubmitted after leveling? It looks OK to me, and I will be the first one to agree that the number of accepted unlevel shots here can be a bit puzzling. Here's one that still has me scratching my head:

Image © John Ryan
PhotoID: 250037
Photograph © John Ryan


I can't quite make it out; is the light brown grassy part of the landscape actually sloped like that? The trees and other objects on that part of the horizon appear "off". As for the distant mountains, the train, and the sky, they look "right", but the tracks in the foreground and everything else look really tilted. I realize that the tracks may be superelevated, but I'm not convinced they really were. It's a nice shot, but there's something about it that doesn't sit well with me.

As far as the point of this thread: The best advice I ever heard on the internet about train photography was "Just shoot what you want." I'll add, "Stop trying to be someone else, and who cares what others think". You can't please everyone. While its nice to get positive feedback from your peers, praise and fame shouldn't be the sole reason for doing anything, especially when it comes to something that is personal and creative.
I did a little work with this in photo-shop and found this rotation and crop way more pleasing.
My eye sees the horizontal line of the dry grass plane as the level indicator in this scene.

UPDATE
Your right John, I see after you pointed it out, the ties are the judgement for horizontal.
Thanks, Art
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Last edited by Everywhere West; 09-13-2008 at 06:29 PM. Reason: UPDATE:
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Old 09-13-2008, 03:42 PM   #29
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My photo taken in the Canyon Ferry Lake Valley is level. The valley does slope like that; after all, it wouldn't be "Out West" if there weren't any mountains. If I wanted flat pictures, I would have stayed put in Illinois last week. When leveling photos, I usually go by what my inner ear tells me. If you need proof, look at the ties. They are flat, horizontal, level, whatever.
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Old 09-13-2008, 06:16 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Blaszczyk (2)
Here are some thoughts about the few little discussions going one here:

1.) Locations are not overshot...angles are. One thing I pride myself on (as well as other photogs such as Mike W.) is being able to go to a location that has been shot by countless others and coming away with something that makes people go.."really, that was *insert location*?!" Sometimes thats all thats there; a little break in the trees or a small opening on a hillside, but that doesn't mean that shooting with "sweet light" on the scene is the only option. Make it your own. Do a night shot. Go on a cloudy day and shoot on the opposite side. Go at dawn or dusk and get the first/last glow.


2.) I agree with Richard about getting up and out early to get back into the game. Sometimes all you need to get into it again is different light or just a different set of trains. I know many places (including NJ) get predictable from talking to the local railfans so go out and get what the late sleepers or ones who pack it in early miss. Also, make that LIST of shots you want to get and BE SPECIFIC! There is nothing worse than having a train get caught at a red signal and being able to get ahead but having no idea where to go. Scout, scout, scout! Everyone always asks me how I get lucky to include boats, fisherman and other real props in my shots and I guess my only answer (other than luck) is knowing where to look! I can't believe I'm saying this but be Mike B. for a day and be picky...shoot the power you want even if it means going out and away from your normal shooting area to get it. If you don't like the endless parade of widecabs, shoot a branch or secondary or a shortline.
Thanks for the plug/compliment Andrew! And Andrew's right, scouting is generally very important. I tend to use satellite maps and such to attempt to scout areas. This is a win/lose type of thing. Sometimes, you get screwed over by wayward trees you couldn't see from space, but other times, it rewards you bountifully. Still other times, it's just an accident, and you happened to be alert enough to see the angle. One other thing I should add is that photo lines are a big no-no. Stay away from the photo line unless absolutely necessary. These too result in many results of the same angle.

Anyways, back on topic. I tend to be very picky with what I open. I get bored quickly with wedgies, and even telemashes (unless done very well). I tend toward things that are different than the rest, things that haven't been done before, and the like. I'll also click on very artistic shots, and I'll click on some of my friends' shots usually as well.
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Old 09-13-2008, 06:24 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slopes09
Thanks for the plug/compliment Andrew! And Andrew's right, scouting is generally very important. I tend to use satellite maps and such to attempt to scout areas. This is a win/lose type of thing. Sometimes, you get screwed over by wayward trees you couldn't see from space, but other times, it rewards you bountifully. Still other times, it's just an accident, and you happened to be alert enough to see the angle. One other thing I should add is that photo lines are a big no-no. Stay away from the photo line unless absolutely necessary. These too result in many results of the same angle.

Anyways, back on topic. I tend to be very picky with what I open. I get bored quickly with wedgies, and even telemashes (unless done very well). I tend toward things that are different than the rest, things that haven't been done before, and the like. I'll also click on very artistic shots, and I'll click on some of my friends' shots usually as well.
My last entry came out pretty good I think and I owe it all to scouting the area and having a mental "notebook" as to where to set up. I had about 4 minutes to park, climb down the bank, and set up. Had I not scouted this angle, it never would have happened.
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Old 09-13-2008, 11:42 PM   #32
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duplicate--delete

Last edited by Noct Foamer; 09-13-2008 at 11:45 PM. Reason: duplicate
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Old 09-13-2008, 11:43 PM   #33
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I've taken so many photos over the past 25 years (mostly landscape, wildlife, and fine art) that I only bother to take photos where the light is absolutely superb. From my POV, it is the light that is 90% of the shot. Maybe 95% even. Learning how to recognize and use light to its best advantage may add that extra something you are looking for.

It's easy to take the same kind of shot time after time, but after awhile you will find yourself in a rut. I quickly get bored taking the same shots and am constantly looking for new challenges. I learned how to shoot 4x5 and became proficient with that, for example. For the past year I haven't been taking all that many photos of trains in the daytime at all. I've accumulated about $3,500 worth of high powered lights & triggers and mostly shoot them at night. I like the challenge; it keeps me fresh. I am..............the Noct Foamer.


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