Old 12-03-2008, 06:03 AM   #26
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I still don't understand how these get in. It almost looks like the train is made out of cheap plastic and its the first time its been used.
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Old 12-03-2008, 07:21 AM   #27
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The editors obviously make an exception to their digital manipulation clause. I believe Gary has admitted in the past to cloning light stands out of his photos, and there are a couple that I think may have power lines cloned out as well.

When it comes down to it, its in RP.net's interest to accept Gary's photos, because they generate thousands and thousands of hits, which generates alot of advertising revenue. Its easy to overlook your own rules when the money you make off web traffic funds your railfan trips.
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Old 12-03-2008, 08:50 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mgoldman
As for the car and the blue coat kid - well, let me use an analogy for that. Let's say you have two cakes - Gary's cake has a border decoration that the box brushed up against. I have pictures where there is slight blur or the train is positioned a bit wrong - wrong track, too much foreground - that'd be a cake that is too sweet or too dry. In other words, the "flaws" mentioned do not effect the entire product.
I don't quite grasp your analogy, but I just have to say in this case, the flaws DO affect the entire product...in my eyes. Yes, it's a very nice photo, but I just find the random person walking through the scene distracting, and I have a feeling Gary cringed when he first saw the result. Sure, he can't reproduce it and has to just accept what he was given, but the blue coat and car in the frame keep this shot from being outstanding, IMO. I probably would have dropped an f-bomb or two on that kid myself.
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Old 12-03-2008, 08:58 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by WKUrailfan
When it comes down to it, its in RP.net's interest to accept Gary's photos, because they generate thousands and thousands of hits, which generates alot of advertising revenue. Its easy to overlook your own rules when the money you make off web traffic funds your railfan trips.
I would figure that philosophy stands true yet in my personal opinion, this shot would have generated a decent number of views and it was rejected. The day prior there was a photo of a gentleman reading the paper as seen from the outside through the window. I don't get it. It's an aspect of railroading... C'est la vie.

/Mitch
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Old 12-03-2008, 09:05 AM   #30
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Mitch, what the hell is that face in the background? Thanks alot...I'm about to hit the sack and now I'm going to have nightmares!
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Old 12-03-2008, 10:17 AM   #31
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Mitch:

I'm with Jim. I didn't notice that face (not the dog) before. Dab a little red in the eyes, and you truly have nightmare material.
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Old 12-03-2008, 10:30 AM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mgoldman
As for his photography - who here claims to have perfected their technique?

/Mitch
Until Gary can get the most important aspect of the photograph looking right, the trains, I do not think he has even come close to perfecting his technique. He does great work behind the camera, but he does extremely questionable work behind the computer. Even some of his daytime stuff has the same plastic look so you can't blame it on the night lighting, it's his PP work; no doubt in my mind.

Put me on the list of wanting to see the originals. I don't think it would be as dramatic as some people expect, but interesting nonetheless.
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Old 12-03-2008, 10:37 AM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike B.

Put me on the list of wanting to see the originals. I don't think it would be as dramatic as some people expect, but interesting nonetheless.
You can put me on the list to wanting to see what he started with, But some one likes them, POTW
I ran it in PS and tried to make it more normal looking. The color temp is what gave me the most normal looking photo and a bit less Saturation too. Wasn't all that pumped up.
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Old 12-03-2008, 03:29 PM   #34
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When it comes down to it, its in RP.net's interest to accept Gary's photos, because they generate thousands and thousands of hits, which generates alot of advertising revenue. Its easy to overlook your own rules when the money you make off web traffic funds your railfan trips.
And the nail has been squarely hit on the head yet again. I made the same argument year(s?) ago about the shots of the new UP heritage units covered in tarps. Newsworthy shots like those, whether held up to the same technical standards of your "every day" type shots or not, draw people to the site. The more people who visit, the more ads that get run, and the more revenue is generated. People tend to forget that RP is also a business. It makes sense to bend the rules in these cases.

And Gary's work fits into that mold. He's a cover story on TRAINS magazine, he's a known name, and his stuff is exclusively (?) featured on RP. And, unfortunately, even though some of his stuff looks overprocessed (his NIK software abilities...fail), people are drawn to it like moths to a flame. They're willing to overlook the finished product, sometimes it seems even unconsciously, and stand in awe of the effort put into getting the shot...
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Old 12-03-2008, 03:43 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mgoldman
He should do this, he never does this, I'd like to see the real unprocessed pics, fake oversaturated... wow. I can't believe what I'm reading.
Numbers don't mean everything, but with the volume of responses including some from very good photographers, you should open your mind to the possibility that a valid point is being made.

Quote:
I, for one, or for at least 60 and counting, really like this image. The amount of effort and skill that went into it is outstanding.
Personally I don't care about effort or skill, I care about outcome. I respect the effort and acknowledge the skill and know that without them one does not get a superior image, but I am interested only in the image. But then, I'm not a fan of biographies; I read Shakespeare but not about Shakespeare.

Quote:
You'll find him to be one of kindest and friendliest of photographers you may ever meet. If ever I was to surround myself with a small group of photographers, I'd no doubt have Gary in that circle.
Probably true, irrelevant to the issue of the quality of one of his shots.

Quote:
As for his photography - who here claims to have perfected their technique?
And so what? And for that matter, a health discussion is good for improving technique. Too bad Gary is not here to participate in a discussion.

Quote:
...
Good points made, a welcome part of the discussion. No need to defend Gary or to object to this discussion occurring to make these points.


Quote:
I'm not saying we should have or express opinions. I'm glad we can and do. But remember, it's not Gary's images that are lacking, rather some preferences in styles and techniques that differ.
I presonally think it is more than preferences, it is a shortcoming in technique. I may be wrong in that opinion, but that is something we can and are discussing. So the discussion is good. And the point that many of us have that the processing is bad is a reasonable view, with which you disagree. But why do you want to shut down the discussion?
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Old 12-03-2008, 04:48 PM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ween
And the nail has been squarely hit on the head yet again. I made the same argument year(s?) ago about the shots of the new UP heritage units covered in tarps. Newsworthy shots like those, whether held up to the same technical standards of your "every day" type shots or not, draw people to the site. The more people who visit, the more ads that get run, and the more revenue is generated. People tend to forget that RP is also a business. It makes sense to bend the rules in these cases.

And Gary's work fits into that mold. He's a cover story on TRAINS magazine, he's a known name, and his stuff is exclusively (?) featured on RP. And, unfortunately, even though some of his stuff looks overprocessed (his NIK software abilities...fail), people are drawn to it like moths to a flame. They're willing to overlook the finished product, sometimes it seems even unconsciously, and stand in awe of the effort put into getting the shot...
I remember a short time back he had that one image that was pretty bad that he fixed and resubmitted. I remember one of the Chris's saying that they talked to him and he was going to resubmit in the next week or so. I think anyone else's image would have just been pulled untill fixed or it would have never even made it that far.
This is more reason to get your name out there and get famous! How much does a player that is the MVP of the Super Bowl make every year? $$$$$$ He is the one getting a free Caddy. Thats how it works. The guys that bring in the money get the money.
To get my name out there, I am going to do sky diving railroad photography (video would be better). I just pick a bridge over the tracks and there you have it, something different.

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Old 12-03-2008, 04:52 PM   #37
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Sean Hoyden has two photos on RP that he has taken with Knapps lighting. Thought they may interesting for you guys to compare.

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Old 12-03-2008, 05:05 PM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WKUrailfan
The editors obviously make an exception to their digital manipulation clause. I believe Gary has admitted in the past to cloning light stands out of his photos, and there are a couple that I think may have power lines cloned out as well.

When it comes down to it, its in RP.net's interest to accept Gary's photos, because they generate thousands and thousands of hits, which generates alot of advertising revenue. Its easy to overlook your own rules when the money you make off web traffic funds your railfan trips.
This may well be the RP "Post of the Decade". Is it possible to frame it and/or post it for all members to read upon uploading pictures here? Maybe people would think twice about this site with that in mind.

Maybe Gary has a pic without the 'blue coated obstruction' in his collection. Perhaps THAT'S the one he saves for real publication where he gets paid. 'Course, he probably gets paid by RP anyway. Wouldn't YOU want to get paid for all of the revenue you generate for this site?
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Old 12-03-2008, 05:05 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mgoldman
He should do this, he never does this, I'd like to see the real unprocessed pics, fake oversaturated... wow. I can't believe what I'm reading. /Mitch
Mike B says:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike B.
Until Gary can get the most important aspect of the photograph looking right, the trains, I do not think he has even come close to perfecting his technique. He does great work behind the camera, but he does extremely questionable work behind the computer. Even some of his daytime stuff has the same plastic look so you can't blame it on the night lighting, it's his PP work; no doubt in my mind.

Put me on the list of wanting to see the originals. I don't think it would be as dramatic as some people expect, but interesting nonetheless.
Mitch-Take a look at this photo and tell me the colors, contrast and shadow noise processing blurs don't look wonky to you?

Image © Gary Knapp
PhotoID: 246101
Photograph © Gary Knapp



Again this is not about the talent that goes into setup, composition, etc, rather it is about post-processing. As the person who has done the post processing, and Photoshop work on the last three issues Trains Special Issue series "Locomotive" and have handled thousands of images for publication, I can tell you- this simply does not appear natural. If that is the intended effect fine, but natural no. The sky and cloud colors alone are certainly off with the rest of the scene.

Obviously post-processing is a matter of taste, there is nothing "fake" about Gary's work, rather how it is presented changes how it is perceived. While I like the night shots themselves, for me the result after post-processing winds up looking less like a photo, and as others have mentioned more like a post card, or really a form of art, which I am not opposed to, per-se. They just come across less and less as journalistic type photos, and have the appearance of a more like theater, stage-like productions. Again, this is a style, and nothing wrong with this, and obviously there is plenty of room in the world of photography for both styles. When it comes to post-processing, this is where my personal taste diverge. I am more of a fan of the Galen Rowell nature photography style, and prefer natural looking images. Often over-saturation and contrast come at the expense of tonality. But hey I do a lot of work in B&W

I am glad Gary is producing these images however, as they are indeed interesting to look at, and show what is now possible with digital, and how they can be formed to the photographers taste.
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Old 12-03-2008, 05:09 PM   #40
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Maybe people would think twice about this site knowing that there are FREE alternatives out there.
What's to think twice about? That they bend their own rules? All one has to do is sit down and realize the decision behind the 'double standard' and it makes sense. You'd do the same thing if it helped your business.

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THAT'S the one he saves for real publication where he gets paid. 'Course, he probably gets paid by RP anyway.
That's a pretty heavy and baseless claim to put out there...
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Old 12-03-2008, 05:19 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by rustyrail
Maybe Gary has a pic without the 'blue coated obstruction' in his collection. Perhaps THAT'S the one he saves for real publication where he gets paid. 'Course, he probably gets paid by RP anyway. Wouldn't YOU want to get paid for all of the revenue you generate for this site?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ween
That's a pretty heavy and baseless claim to put out there...

Sorry- but the grand conspiracy that RP.net is paying Gary to bring in add revenue I find about as probable as 9/11 being an inside job, and my wife was abducted by aliens last night. If RP.net wanted to bring in real cash and ad revenue it would not be with night train photos, it would be with hot chicks on locomotives in compromising positions.... If you want to become a noted photographer here or anywhere, the old fashioned way works best: submit great, interesting and different photos. Gary has done that.

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Old 12-03-2008, 05:35 PM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ween
What's to think twice about? That they bend their own rules? All one has to do is sit down and realize the decision behind the 'double standard' and it makes sense. You'd do the same thing if it helped your business.



That's a pretty heavy and baseless claim to put out there...
Ah, but you didn't really answer my question:

"Wouldn't YOU want to get paid for all of the revenue you generate for this site?" Or at least take a share in some of the revenue? That would be a fair business practice, correct? Why should someone simply donate their hard work for someone else's profit? What, to hopefully get enough exposure to make $50 selling a print or an image to a magazine once in a blue moon?

If I display artwork at a gallery in hopes of making a sale, the gallery *may* take a commission, but they don't take ALL of it.
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Old 12-03-2008, 05:35 PM   #43
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I don't see a problem with him cloning out his lighting equipment. That's stuff he puts there and if he wants to go through that trouble instead of hiding the lights, so be it. I have more of a problem when folks clone out power lines and poles, stuff that if I go to that location, I will see.

I'm guessing if I go there I will not see Knapp's lighting set up, but if I do, I'm not telling anyone!



Gary could probably make a lot of money letting people tag along for a little money or setting up shoots somewhere. Then it would be interesting to see what other folks come up with.


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Old 12-03-2008, 05:39 PM   #44
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Originally Posted by rustyrail
Wouldn't YOU want to get paid for all of the revenue you generate for this site?"

I have to admitt that I hate to think about all the expensive cars that must line the Chris' mulitple garages in their MTV-like cribs. And when I heard they bought a share of Google, I really knew they should be sharing the revenue with us guys.



Yeah, damn them!


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Old 12-03-2008, 05:45 PM   #45
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Ah, but you didn't really answer my question:

"Wouldn't YOU want to get paid for all of the revenue you generate for this site?" Or at least take a share in some of the revenue? That would be a fair business practice, correct? Why should someone simply donate their hard work for someone else's profit? What, to hopefully get enough exposure to make $50 selling a print or an image to a magazine once in a blue moon?

If I display artwork at a gallery in hopes of making a sale, the gallery *may* take a commission, but they don't take ALL of it.

I think this is another discussion far away from the intent of this thread. I suspect the business model of RP.net in no way supports compensation of contributors, unless a subscription for viewers could be charged, and would therefore be self-defeating. The ad revenue, although I have zero idea of what it is, I suspect covers the cost of servers, equipment, software, connections, etc, and possibly some of the owners time for putting this all together so we can enjoy it: for free. Again, no one is putting a gun to our head saying "Submit to RP.net or else!". If you want to make what little money there is to be made in railroad photography, there are other venues. I personally know of several well known railroad photographers who don't submit for that same reason; they can make money elsewhere. I don't think the founding of this site was for the intent of contributors making money. It would be nice, but I believe it is a place for us to share work at no cost.

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Old 12-03-2008, 06:09 PM   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe the Photog

I have to admitt that I hate to think about all the expensive cars that must line the Chris' mulitple garages in their MTV-like cribs. And when I heard they bought a share of Google, I really knew they should be sharing the revenue with us guys.



Yeah, damn them!


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Old 12-03-2008, 06:10 PM   #47
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Wait! You guys arent getting your monthly check in the mail from Chris? Hmmm
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Old 12-03-2008, 06:43 PM   #48
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Wait! You guys arent getting your monthly check in the mail from Chris? Hmmm
Check? For every 10 views I get a penny in my PayPal account. Why is the system different for you?
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Old 12-03-2008, 06:59 PM   #49
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Walter - we promised not to tell anyone about our checks!!

Ross /Janusz - Yes, that one specific photo was very much oversaturated. I was mystified when I saw it and even more so when I saw it on RP. As for discussing the image(s), I tried to explain, I do not oppose alternate points of views nor discussion, only the direction it sometimes went. It was starting to sound like the threads regarding Reading and Northern's blue steam engine. I've always stated I'd prefer it to be painted black but never stated it looked dumb in blue and it never should've been painted that way. Looking back it was only a few comments that seemed a bit over the top suggesting the image may be fake, or admitted through the back door.

Jim - that guy in the background in the picture with the dog that scared ya - that was the kid in John Dziobko's Strasburg picture all grown up!

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And again, I think that pic would've generated plenty of views so that somewhat defeats the drive of admin to let in anything that increases traffic. Note any animal pic on RP.

/Mitch

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Old 12-03-2008, 07:11 PM   #50
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"Wouldn't YOU want to get paid for all of the revenue you generate for this site?" Or at least take a share in some of the revenue? That would be a fair business practice, correct?
I'd like to get paid for everything I do, but that isn't reality. Wouldn't it be nice if Pepsi gave me a check everytime I told someone they should drink Pepsi? But fairness really isn't at play with regards to RP paying its contributors...at no level do they force you to submit your stuff or hint at any type of compensation.

The "payment" they do offer is a place to display your work with the "best" and perhaps gain some name recognition. It's smart business to pay nothing for something but make money off of it in return. It's the ideal business scenario, actually. Nothing wrong with that if you can pull it off...
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