Old 04-27-2006, 03:09 AM   #1
SD70MAC
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Default How to Photograph Railroads

Heres a link to a nicely done site I found on techniques and what not on Railroad Photography.

http://homepage.mac.com/allegheny/guide/rp/index.html
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Old 04-27-2006, 03:33 AM   #2
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I pretty much disagree with everything on that website.

He is promoting Digital photography, which i hate. And he addresses the camera gear issue.

Many like to say that crappy gear can be just as good as nice gear because of this stupid statement.

"its not the gear its vision inside the photographer"

Yes, it takes about 80% of the photographer, but crappy gear means that your overall quality of work will not repoduce as well as it could. The easiest way to tell is in an enlargment.

The camera body doesnt make a whole lot of differeance. It is more of a personal preferance as to what functions and style of body is most convient and knowledgeable for the photographer to use.

The film is very important. It is what decides what colors and amount of detail to caputure. For instance slides give better image quality verse prints. And slides are more sharp then prints.

The lens is where everything happens. The glass is the most crucial point. The better the glass, the better the image reporduction onto the film you will get.

Many disagree, but they are the ones that havent actually used a top of the line lens. Once they do, they will see the differance. Good glass+ excellent film+ photographer inspiration= excellent photo.

Photography rule- there are none, why should we obey rules. Tne only rule is that there are no rules.

That is what i would replace with that guys website, insted of him trying to sell me bull crap about digitral photography.
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Old 04-27-2006, 03:35 AM   #3
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He hearts Apple computers! NICE!
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Old 04-27-2006, 03:56 AM   #4
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I still prefer Railway Photography by Brian Solomon and John Gruber. Pat, you'd like it because he still reccomends film over digital. It offers everything from the very basics(types of cameras) to advice on choosing a photo system, as well as techinique, composition, scouting out locations, and getting your shots published.
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Old 04-27-2006, 04:07 AM   #5
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I've never heard of that book but sounds like something I wouldn't mind picking up.
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Old 04-27-2006, 05:11 AM   #6
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[quote=Pat Lorenz]I pretty much disagree with everything on that website.

He is promoting Digital photography, which i hate. And he addresses the camera gear issue.QUOTE]

Once I went digital, I never looked back. Camera already paid for itself twice over... important to me since I have a disability with very limited income. Quality is superior, no gas $$$ running all over, processing in Photoshop is fun and no poor film processing or waiting. Good riddance!! (and I used to swear by slides for years. Used a Canon F-1)

I don't agree with much on that site either! 'Specially the computer section.

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Old 04-27-2006, 01:42 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slopes09
Pat, you'd like it because he still reccomends film over digital.
Many still recommend LPs over CDs too!!!


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Old 04-27-2006, 01:48 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pat Lorenz
Good glass+ excellent film+ photographer inspiration= excellent photo.
I don't see framing and composition or even a fair amount of luck in your equation.


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Old 04-27-2006, 02:14 PM   #9
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Calm down people...

Disclaimer

A 17 year old that bought his own mac powerbook, a copy of photoshop and a digicam? Hmmm.. must be nice...
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Old 04-27-2006, 06:41 PM   #10
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Well what ever you think about digital photography or his advice... he sure has a future in pictures or web design!
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Old 04-27-2006, 11:13 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pat Lorenz
The film is very important. It is what decides what colors and amount of detail to caputure.
I'm simply going to disagree with the debate over film vs digital. The sensors of Digital SLR's are as sensitive if not more so than the grain of any film I've EVER shot with, including PROVIA ISO 100. That goes for DSLR's with sub 35mm sensors as well, NIKON & CANON 6MP DSLR's both meet or exceed the color vividness and sharpness of a film print at 4000 dpi.

One of the factors to consider is that in order to present an image digitally on the web, it takes your first generation image (lens to film) and the a 2nd generation image (film to slide) and 3rd generation (slide to scanner). There will invariably be some image quality degredation with each step in the process, now with digital, the lens is where the photo starts and finishes to the digital sensor, therefore you get a 1st generation photo from the release of the shutter.

I will not disagree with your comments on camera bodies and lenses, suffice to say that the better the glass the better you can take advantage of your camera body's capabilities.

Cheap glass will get you lower quality images, for the majority of people, including many of those here on RP.net that is an acceptable tradeoff. As it's the interest in trains, and in most cases it's the hobby factor that outweighs the professional factor.

If film is still so great? Why is it that the professional photographic community hasn't pressed the camera manufacturers harder to continue upgrading their technology in the film department?

The fact of the matter is, Digital is replacing film, everyday, I talk to people who have happily made the hop from film to digital. I'm sick and tired of countless hours spent in a darkroom, I'm also tired of waiting for some film processing lab out in East Bumblf&&& to take 7 to 10 days to process my film, screw it up, and then have to take 7 to 10 more days to send it back. As with many things in our society, we've become a rather impatient lot.

In film's defense, I will say that the digital world has yet to come up with a reliable way to preserve digital imagery over the longer term. You cannot yet argue against a slide/negative lasting far longer than the bytes encased on your typical DVD-ROM.

With each passing day, there are fewer and fewer film holdouts. And many of the staunchest filmers I know still have a DSLR strung around their neck next to a K1000.

It's only a matter of time.

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Old 04-28-2006, 01:06 AM   #12
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Quote:
Many still recommend LPs over CDs too!!!
Yeah, but no one makes them (LP's) anymore! Have fun rarely playing your vinyl as you try to preserve that sound that you adore.

Same thing with film. Time marches on, and you won't be able to find it anywhere either. Digital is the future whether you like it or not. Sorry!


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The only rule is that there are no rules.
Tell that to this site!!
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Old 04-28-2006, 02:30 AM   #13
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Dont be sorry, i will always be there in films defense. Because nobody else on this website uses it. Digital is runing photography, and i realize that. Its too bad to see that happening.

Many professionals havent urged companies to make film upgrades because i my opinion its as upgraded as you can get. There are only so many functions that one can put into a camera body. The Nikon F6 is the most adavance and the greatest film body ever produced in the world but nobody is buying it because it is almost the same camera as the F100 and F5. which are about half the price.

I will say that processing is all wrong, it seems to me that alot of people are sending there slides out, which i cannot understand. I work closley with my local photofinisher down the street. They cator to slides, prints and specailtiys and i have always loved there services.

I think many are disaponted with film because we live in an on demand world. Nobody likes to wait, look at the divorce rates, many cant wait to get married and then find they should have waited.

Film photography takes time, it takes work to get it somewhat right. You just cant pick up the camera and nail it, you have to screw up a couple dozen rollls before you can get a feel for the camera.

I feel like digital has taken this 'art' out of it. I guess for some people in simple pursuit of the hobby its ok for them.

What ever your opinion, i will always listen to it, that doesnt mean i will hear it.

As far as time goes, there are many out there who still use it, and there will always be some company to cator to those needs. As far as film equipment goes, thats it, film is over with production. And i agree with that. I am happy with my gear.

Just like shooting sports goes, some people need ammo that has lost production (specialty bullets). There are few companies out there that make these for people, your paying out the behind but thats not the point.
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Old 04-28-2006, 02:37 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pat Lorenz
Photography rule- there are none, why should we obey rules. Tne only rule is that there are no rules.
No rules? I think you're forgetting the almighty "rule of thirds" that so many folks seem to swear by.
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Old 04-28-2006, 03:01 AM   #15
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I work closley with my local photofinisher down the street.
And there's your problem. Not every place has a photofinisher or even a real camera shop. Grand Forks is the 3rd largest city in this state, and it doesn't have one camera shop (no, that 'Ritz' camera with 1 hour development in the mall doesn't count).

Quote:
Film photography takes time, it takes work to get it somewhat right. You just cant pick up the camera and nail it, you have to screw up a couple dozen rollls before you can get a feel for the camera.
That just doesn't make sense to me. Compose and expose. Film or digital, the principles are the exact same.

Quote:
I feel like digital has taken this 'art' out of it. I guess for some people in simple pursuit of the hobby its ok for them.
I've been doing this for almost 2.5 years, and there is almost no science in it. It's all art and feel. If anything, there's more art in digital because you can have two people standing next to each other, using the same equipment shooting the same thing, and you can (and probably will) get two different photos based on how the images are processed. And that's the true art: post-processing, because like I said, composing and exposing a shot is the same, whether it's film or digital...
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Old 04-28-2006, 03:07 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pat Lorenz
Digital is runing photography, and i realize that. Its too bad to see that happening
Digital IS NOT ruining photography, it is revolutionizing it. It is only ruining it for sentimental folks like yourself who have what is commonly known as "The fear of change."


Quote:
Originally Posted by Pat Lorenz
Many professionals havent urged companies to make film upgrades because i my opinion its as upgraded as you can get.
The next upgrade is already here, it's called DIGITAL. You've just described the reason for film's demise, it has had a long and venerable history, but there is no place left for film to go. It is time for it to make way for the next chapter in the photographic sciences.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pat Lorenz
I will say that processing is all wrong, it seems to me that alot of people are sending there slides out, which i cannot understand. I work closley with my local photofinisher down the street. They cator to slides, prints and specailtiys and i have always loved there services.
As I'm sure you've noticed, there isn't a "local photofinisher" next to every 7-11. The camera store nearest to me has gone strictly to supporting digital photography, although HE WILL happily send your film off for processing, developing, and scanning for a "small fee". But I must question his definition of "small", LOL!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pat Lorenz
Film photography takes time, it takes work to get it somewhat right. You just cant pick up the camera and nail it, you have to screw up a couple dozen rollls before you can get a feel for the camera.
Shoot digital RAW photos sometime, you'll see striking similarities with processing film. It's as easy to screw up a digital photo as easy as it is to screw up a film photo, you can just do it faster with a digital.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pat Lorenz
I feel like digital has taken this 'art' out of it. I guess for some people in simple pursuit of the hobby its ok for them.
Technology is no substitution for creativity, creativity is something that is inherent in all artists regardless of the medium they use to display/capture it. The "art" you refer to is tedious, time consuming and fitting of the people that do it as a hobby to pass the time. While you're toiling in the dark room 'enjoying' yourself, I'll be out where I want to be; trackside, or at the bar 'enjoying' myself.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pat Lorenz
As far as time goes, there are many out there who still use it, and there will always be some company to cator to those needs. As far as film equipment goes, thats it, film is over with production. And i agree with that. I am happy with my gear. Just like shooting sports goes, some people need ammo that has lost production (specialty bullets). There are few companies out there that make these for people, your paying out the behind but thats not the point.
Opinion noted, it is yours to have. But as you suggest, there maybe a handful of companies out there that will cater to your needs as a film guy. But as the digital revolution takes stronger roots, those businesses have an increasing overhead, with a decreasing customer base. It will eventually become so expensive to use film that only hobbyists with plenty of disposable finances will be able to do so.

Forwarded for your consideration,
Sean
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Old 04-28-2006, 03:35 AM   #17
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Well, Nikon is going out of the film business. That should tell you something!

Local photofinisher here in East Bumblef**k, Pa.?
What, Wally World who put everyone out of business? That's about all there is, except running 20 miles one way to the mall, have to prepay special order, run 20 mi. back to pick it up, and do the same thing over again to get processing done. That's 80 miles. That's gas $$$ + film $$$ + waiting + third world quality processing. And I have NO disposible finances.

Digital is the best thing that ever happened to me. I have shot more in the last year and gotten out on the railroad much more often due to the $$$ savings of digital. Per my previous post, the camera paid for itself twice over.

So, for financial and aggravation reasons alone, film was ruining my photography! So there! (raspberry)

For me, digital has put the art into it, big time. You better be good at post processing, and for me I have a blast doing it. (rather than deal with expensive toxic chemicals which I would never let into the house anyway, not to mention an expensive darkroom. Wouldn't even try)

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Old 04-28-2006, 03:43 AM   #18
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I am glad to see such courage out of you digital folk. I think all of our opinions have been noted and each one of us has taken the oppositions advice with a canaster of salt. Whether or not we each use digital or film photography is our choice and by all means we should do what we feel is confortable.

I have always thought this rule:

Digital is for reporters and film is for everyone else.

It seems that we have come to an era to where a new medium has risen and the ones making the switch seem to toot there horn on how much better it is, but i am a rebel, i will stick up for the other side when nobody else is.

It seems to me that i am the only film photographer on this website that still hasnt made switch. So i guess its me against railpictures website. I will take my chances.
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Old 04-28-2006, 03:47 AM   #19
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i will stick up for the other side when nobody else is.
Yeah, unfortunately the guy that stuck up for BetaMax is now homeless and penniless. The VHS guy is pretty much down and out too. And the DVD guy's days are numbered.

Get on the train (pun intended?) or get left behind...
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Old 04-28-2006, 03:53 AM   #20
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Well i wont exactly get left behind. You digital guys will be buying new cameras next year anyway because they will realese something new and better. When the time is right, i am sure i will make the switch. I will probably give it another good 5 years before i try this new medium. The problem with me going to digital is that i am not very good with post process editing in photoshop. You know croping and file saving. Thats mainly why film is so appealing to me is because i dont have to do any file transfers.

The only transfers i do is for this website, but i dont take it to seriously.

You will win eventually, but i am gonna drag it out forever.
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Old 04-28-2006, 04:22 AM   #21
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You will win eventually, but i am gonna drag it out forever.
Pat, there's no sense in beating a dead horse.
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Old 04-28-2006, 04:38 AM   #22
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Cant i have a little bit of fun? Film is NOT dead! Disco is NOT dead!
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Old 04-28-2006, 11:17 AM   #23
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My comment about some people still recommending LPs over CDs was actually meant as a joke, but in a way, it relates to digital v. film. Keep in mind that I shoot only digital right now. When I bought the 300D, I kept the Elan 7 as a back up thinking I would still shoot slides now and then. But that didn't happen and I loaned out the Elan to my sister in law.

I don't miss shooting slides, but I have no doubt that people will shoot slides for many years and they will get some amazing stuff out of it. And naturally there will always be the photogs who shoot print film and run down to Wal Mart, Wolf Camera or Eckerds and get the one hour processing done. (That used to be me.)

I shoot digital for a couple of reasons and in no order --

1.) It puts me in control of everything from the original exposure to the final product. If something is screwwed up, I know who to go to and yell at.

2.) After you buy the camera, it's cheaper. No film to buy, no processing, no mailers. It's great for tax refunds. For me personally, I get to do a lot of fanning before and after work on the way back and forth, so gas isn't that expensive until I decide to head out of the area. That's when I have to sit down and do the budget.

3.) The fact that I can shoot a few frames and then look at the result has helped me get better in my photography. I try new things, different angles that I wasn't prepared to try as much when shooting film. When I go back and look at the slides I shot that are on this site, I usually cringe. I don't think 9/10s of them would be accepted today.

It doesn't bother me when someone praises film over dgital. When does get on my last nerve is when someone says that people who shoot digital are not photographers and do everyting in post processing. This thread has thankfully stayed away from that.


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Old 04-28-2006, 01:15 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pat Lorenz
Cant i have a little bit of fun? Film is NOT dead! Disco is NOT dead!
Nice, let's put it like this, film will be dead. Disco should have never been born!

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Old 04-28-2006, 02:00 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe the Photog
My comment about some people still recommending LPs over CDs was actually meant as a joke.
Joke taken and understood.


To me, a newcomer to photography and one that is not familar with "serious" film cameras, I can say that every comparison I've heard and read between the two formats from amateurs to professionals, hands down favor digital over film. The sheer freedom and flexibility of digital alone is enough to kill film.

Pat, I know what you're saying, but the change is inevitable. Just ask the N&W when they tried to hold on to their steamers into the '60's longer than anyone else.
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