Old 11-07-2008, 01:35 AM   #1
SCFrankie
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Default What is a "Wedgie"?

I've heard this tons of times here on the forum and elsewhere but never knew exactly what it was, is it just a term for a boring angle?
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Old 11-07-2008, 01:48 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCFrankie
I've heard this tons of times here on the forum and elsewhere but never knew exactly what it was, is it just a term for a boring angle?
Um...yeah.
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Old 11-07-2008, 01:51 AM   #3
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Boring angle, yes.

I would define it like this. A three-quarter shot of a train, neither a nose-on shot nor a direct side view, but about halfway in between, where the train is the dominant or sole element of the shot.

The perspective lines formed by the top of the train and the rail come together in the infinite distance, creating a wedge. For me a wedgie also means that the area around the train is dull and formless, or maybe that just means it is a bad or boring wedgie. The more there is trackside to offer something of interest other than the boring wedgie view of the train, the less the shot is a wedgie, in my book.

Does anyone know the reason why the term "three-quarter" is used? What are the first, second, and fourth quarters?
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Old 11-07-2008, 01:56 AM   #4
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I don't know if boring really does it justice. Call it traditional.
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Old 11-07-2008, 02:06 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JRMDC
Boring angle, yes.

I would define it like this. A three-quarter shot of a train, neither a nose-on shot nor a direct side view, but about halfway in between, where the train is the dominant or sole element of the shot.

The perspective lines formed by the top of the train and the rail come together in the infinite distance, creating a wedge. For me a wedgie also means that the area around the train is dull and formless, or maybe that just means it is a bad or boring wedgie. The more there is trackside to offer something of interest other than the boring wedgie view of the train, the less the shot is a wedgie, in my book.

Does anyone know the reason why the term "three-quarter" is used? What are the first, second, and fourth quarters?

So is it only a wedgie is the train and track blend together in background? I've often wondered what most people consider a wedgie. Most of my shots have the power on one side the shot with the cars trailing off on the other. I've always thought of a wedgie as a 3/4 shot with nothing other than the train to look at.

Look through what I've got on RP on tell me which ones you think are wedgies. I'd be curious to find out what we agree and disagree on. http://www.railpictures.net/showphotos.php?userid=18181
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Old 11-07-2008, 02:09 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike B.
I've always thought of a wedgie as a 3/4 shot with nothing other than the train to look at.
Simple and direct!
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Old 11-07-2008, 02:15 AM   #7
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I have no idea why it is called a 3/4 view, but the term seems to come from the art world. One definition was "A view halfway between a front view and a side view." You would think that would make it a 1/4 shot!

A "wedgie" is a term of derision or contempt, as is often the case with words employing the diminutive "ie" ending. For some it's any 3/4 view shot, for others it's reserved only for repetitive grade crossing type shots where there is only the train and nothing else interesting in the photo.

Back in steam days, with the plume of smoke trailing back, this type of shot was considered interesting and many still feel it's the traditional way to shoot a train.

Whether it's a "wedgie" or a 3/4 shot or a "traditional" shot is up to you, the viewer. I must admit to having taken my share of 3/4 view photos and some of them were no doubt "wedgies."

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Old 11-07-2008, 02:45 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JRMDC
Simple and direct!
So...that is what a wedgie is?
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Old 11-07-2008, 03:13 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike B.
So...that is what a wedgie is?
Sure! You seem surprised. What you said is pretty much the basics of what I said, in fewer words.
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Old 11-07-2008, 04:20 AM   #10
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Changed my mind... shouldn't have made this post... apologies.

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Old 11-07-2008, 05:14 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JRMDC
Sure! You seem surprised. What you said is pretty much the basics of what I said, in fewer words.
I guess I am surprised to a certain degree since most of the time everyone disagrees with me here, but I was more confused about the actual meaning of your post more than anything.
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Old 11-07-2008, 06:01 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCFrankie
I've heard this tons of times here on the forum and elsewhere but never knew exactly what it was, is it just a term for a boring angle?
Well "SC", I believe a picture is worth 1000 words....or 1000 of mine anyway

THIS....is a wedgie:

Image © Kevin Madore
PhotoID: 258794
Photograph © Kevin Madore


Observe the distinguishing characteristics as defined by the other guys:
  1. Shooting angle...somewhere between head-on and broadside
  2. Train going in a straight line
  3. Shot dominated by the train
  4. Dull, relatively uninteresting scenery
  5. Acceptable composition, lighting, sharpness....minimum RP standards.
  6. Dismal view count

Normally, I don't bother shooting scenes like this. I shot this one because the line's only steam engine was scheduled to sit in the yard for hours and that was about as interesting as watching paint dry! I posted it because I thought it was at least colorful....and the loco passed my test for diesel eligibility....it was older than me!
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Old 11-07-2008, 06:23 PM   #13
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I do actually want to point out that there are some of us (generally those who are as interested in the trains themselves as they are the photography) who enjoy the wedgie shots. While the term is certainly derogatory, and there is no question the shot has been overused, and this site has very much become one for expanding one's focus beyond this rather easy-to-shoot angle... if you enjoy shooting and/or looking at these shots, there's no reason not to continue to do so.

(Don't fall into the trap of just shooting them... especially of just shooting them from the same location... if you are looking to call yourself a photographer, however.)
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Old 11-07-2008, 09:41 PM   #14
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^That photo looks pretty good to me. I was asking because I shoot a specific way, mainly with a semi head-on shot with the train curved usually to the Left or Right (I attached an example, photo not taken by me, but this is my style of shooting). I assumed it would be called a "wedgie" and haven't quite decided if I should scan my older stuff and post.. Now that I know what it is exactly, I can safely say I understand why wedgies of Class I's would be boring..
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Old 11-07-2008, 10:17 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCFrankie
I was asking because I shoot a specific way, mainly with a semi head-on shot with the train curved usually to the Left or Right (I attached an example, photo not take by me, but this is my style of shooting). I assumed it would be called a "wedgie" and haven't quite decided if I should scan my older stuff and post.. Now that I know what it is exactly, I can safely say I understand why wedgies of Class I's would be boring..
To my knowledge, there are no rules about "wedgies". I see tons of new ones come in every day. I guess I wouldn't call the shot you attached in your post a true "wedgie" , because the photographer did get the train doing something besides traveling in a straight line and there are some other elements in the composition that could be construed (depending on the viewer) as interesting. Also, this looks like a "legacy shot"....meaning older. I think the standards on RP are a little more lenient for those.

I'd say post away. As long as the Screeners give them the thumbs-up, you're good to go. Obviously, pick your best stuff. I think we all try to do that.
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Old 11-08-2008, 12:48 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Freericks
I do actually want to point out that there are some of us (generally those who are as interested in the trains themselves as they are the photography) who enjoy the wedgie shots. While the term is certainly derogatory, and there is no question the shot has been overused, and this site has very much become one for expanding one's focus beyond this rather easy-to-shoot angle... if you enjoy shooting and/or looking at these shots, there's no reason not to continue to do so.

(Don't fall into the trap of just shooting them... especially of just shooting them from the same location... if you are looking to call yourself a photographer, however.)

Wedgies vs. scenery vs. outta the box...beer vs. wine.

As Freericks stated, each style serves its own purpose, and RPN shows the best of all of them.

As far as I'm concerned, I don't care if you were standing on your head when you shot your 'older stuff' pending how old it is. If you're talking vintage old, I'll stand on my head to look at it. I love the Donald Haskle, John Dziobko, etc. vintage photos.
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Old 11-08-2008, 06:50 AM   #17
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-the following is my personal opinion-

I always considered a 'wedgie' to be a tight 3/4 angle (by which I mean more toward the side but also showing the front) of a locomotive or a group of locomotives leading a train. If you get the whole train receding into the distance, or cut off by a framing element (tree trunk, building, etc.), I never considered it a wedgie, just a traditional 3/4 train shot. If you get a tight 3/4 view of a locomotive by itself, I would consider it a roster shot. To me, a perfect roster shot must meet certain criteria (no poles or trees rising alone above the locomotive, more toward the side but showing enough of the nose to see all of it, no obstructing foreground objects or shadows falling on the loco). 'Perfect' roster shots are difficult to achieve if you follow these criteria.

My personal style seems to lean toward creatively framed 3/4 train shots (this includes 3/4 train shots taken from interesting vantage points, such as bridges or high bluffs) and broadsides. I also pride myself on my few 'perfect' roster shots that I have.

Here are some of my own shots to illustrate my points:

'wedgies' by my definition:

Image © John Higginson
PhotoID: 68822
Photograph © John Higginson


Image © John Higginson
PhotoID: 61242
Photograph © John Higginson


3/4 train shots (different, to me, from 'wedgies,' since they show the rest of the train):

Image © John Higginson
PhotoID: 132480
Photograph © John Higginson


Image © John Higginson
PhotoID: 172035
Photograph © John Higginson


Image © John Higginson
PhotoID: 127543
Photograph © John Higginson


roster shots:

Image © John Higginson
PhotoID: 84823
Photograph © John Higginson


Image © John Higginson
PhotoID: 126613
Photograph © John Higginson


Image © John Higginson
PhotoID: 225684
Photograph © John Higginson


Image © John Higginson
PhotoID: 110745
Photograph © John Higginson

Last edited by Flowing; 11-08-2008 at 07:07 AM.
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Old 11-08-2008, 07:20 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flowing
Here are some of my own shots to illustrate my points:

'wedgies' by my definition:

Image © John Higginson
PhotoID: 68822
Photograph © John Higginson


Image © John Higginson
PhotoID: 61242
Photograph © John Higginson
I wouldn't qualify those are wedgie shots, but as roster shots of the trains motive power which I find completely pointless. 99% of the time that type of shot sucks.
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Old 11-08-2008, 03:26 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flowing

3/4 train shots (different, to me, from 'wedgies,' since they show the rest of the train):

Image © John Higginson
PhotoID: 132480
Photograph © John Higginson


Image © John Higginson
PhotoID: 172035
Photograph © John Higginson


Image © John Higginson
PhotoID: 127543
Photograph © John Higginson
Since those photos illustrate the classic shape of a wedge, I'd definitely consider them wedgies.
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Old 11-08-2008, 03:40 PM   #20
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This is a wedgie for what I am concerned.
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Old 11-09-2008, 01:31 AM   #21
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Is that your new profile photo?
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Old 11-09-2008, 01:38 AM   #22
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Quote:
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Is that your new profile photo?
I would but someone would probably turn me into the kiddy police.
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Old 11-09-2008, 02:26 PM   #23
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I am surprised that it took that long for someone to post an actual wedgie.
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Old 11-09-2008, 04:57 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by travsirocz
I would but someone would probably turn me into the kiddy police.
Done and done
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Old 11-09-2008, 08:59 PM   #25
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This member decided to share his pictures here:

Quote:
'wedgies' by my definition:

Image © John Higginson
PhotoID: 68822
Photograph © John Higginson


Image © John Higginson
PhotoID: 61242
Photograph © John Higginson
And this guy replies thus:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike B.
I wouldn't qualify those are wedgie shots, but as roster shots of the trains motive power which I find completely pointless. 99% of the time that type of shot sucks.
Dude, you are a complete and utter DICK. Must be lonely at the top.
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