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-   -   Probably high sun, but just to be sure... (http://www.railpictures.net/forums/showthread.php?t=17728)

spacetrain1983 06-07-2016 04:06 AM

Probably high sun, but just to be sure...
 
Attachment 9199
Attachment 9200
Hey everyone. I got these two shots last weekend of a parked UP intermodal train. The sun was really beating down that day. Is the sun at too high of an angle? With the anticlimber shadow on the front plow, I think it might just be.
What do you think? Where exactly is the boundary between good light and high sun?
Thanks in advance, ST1983.

CSX1702 06-07-2016 04:10 AM

Yeah, it's high sun but you can probably sneak that first one in. The boundary between good light and high sun is when there are not distracting shadows. The rule of thumb I think most of us use is if there is light on the trucks or not.

Also, with the top picture, you are improving. Framed nicely and the train is cut off naturally (not by the edge of the picture). Exposed properly and it's level. Good job!

Freericks 06-07-2016 04:14 AM

Those are high sun - not terrible - but not good enough for posting.

Here are two rules to go by that help me.

1) Is your shadow shorter than you, your size, or taller than you? If your shadow is shorter than you, you are in high sun.

2) Where is the railhead shadow on the rail side. If the shadow is halfway or more down the rail, it is high sun.

Now all photography rules are fluid. There are things you can do when the sun is against you (when it is marginally against you that is). You can shoot a tele-mash. You can shoot down from a bridge. You can play with the shadow/highlight tool. But - and this is a big but - if it is 1PM on June 21 and you are out shooting, there's probably nothing you can do. The sun angle will just be too ugly.

If tele-mashing or shooting down from a bridge, I look at the shadow from the rail head and see if I can still see it. If I find a position or a focal length that covers it, then I know I'm at the right angle for that time of day.

As to the shadow/highlights tool - it's only going to work saving a shot that is just over the line. If you try to save a really bad high sun shot you will get a water color painting.

miningcamper1 06-07-2016 07:47 AM

Both are soft and dark. Fixed, maybe you catch a screener in a good mood.

Suggestion: download IrfanView for free and use the auto-adjust feature.

[I would have turned the headlights on, just a personal preference.]

JRMDC 06-07-2016 12:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by miningcamper1 (Post 188604)
[I would have turned the headlights on, just a personal preference.]

You are in the habit of boarding engines of parked trains and making adjustments to their appearance, camper? :) :)

ShortlinesUSA 06-07-2016 12:31 PM

And if a screener is a fair to bad mood, obviously parked trains (no headlight, no crew) are often rejected, even in the best of light...

miningcamper1 06-07-2016 01:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by JRMDC (Post 188605)
You are in the habit of boarding engines of parked trains and making adjustments to their appearance, camper? :) :)

Mandrake gestured hypnotically: "Let there be light!" :twisted:

Mberry 06-07-2016 03:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ShortlinesUSA (Post 188606)
And if a screener is a fair to bad mood, obviously parked trains (no headlight, no crew) are often rejected, even in the best of light...

Really? What reason given?

I have at least one photo with a parked train, I even mentioned that in the caption (not that I imagine those get read much while screening).

[photoid=558623]

wds 06-07-2016 05:42 PM

1 Attachment(s)
First shot: 30 second makeover in Photoshop Elements (really worth the investment, it's probably like 50 bucks or so at Costco). Played with levels (NOT auto-level adjust, that made it look all greenish-yellow and ugly), added saturation, reduced noise and sharpened a bit. Not saying that it would get in even then as the shadow above the coupler is nasty, but selecting and lightening that shadow more just looks too artificial. Still, the added "pop" of the brightening and especially saturation might put it over the bar:

Attachment 9201

Thought about cropping as there's an abundance of featureless sky and foreground but reducing either or both would make you have to cut off the road on the left and I think that, while not necessary to the image, it adds interest. Others may have a different opinion.

The second shot IMO would have a better chance if you had included just enough of the road embankment on the left to use as a cut-off for the train instead of the frame (again as mentioned previously). Looks like you did a crop of the first shot there, just cropped a bit too much.

JRMDC 06-07-2016 08:15 PM

Nice effort, WDS. The shot is in a 4:3 format and with that blank sky and dull foreground, I would also crop some amount of both to get to a 3:2 format. Since the image is 976 pixels wide, or that is what Windows is telling me, I would crop the vertical down from 732 to 650. That should improve things further.

ShortlinesUSA 06-08-2016 12:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mberry (Post 188608)
Really? What reason given?

I have at least one photo with a parked train, I even mentioned that in the caption (not that I imagine those get read much while screening).

[photoid=558623]

Mike, my recollection is there is (or was) a rejection code for a parked train, unless I have lost my mind. That, or it is within the "Cloudy day, common power" explanation or somewhere similar. It seems to be one of those which is at the discretion of the screener, because we know there are plenty of images of parked trains on the site. It seems to be a matter of whether the subject is newsworthy/interesting.

I definitely recall people flipping out over a train where the engineer forgot to turn on the headlight because "Railpictures won't accept it if the light isn't on." I haven't heard that in awhile, but I used to.

miningcamper1 06-08-2016 02:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ShortlinesUSA (Post 188612)

I definitely recall people flipping out over a train where the engineer forgot to turn on the headlight because "Railpictures won't accept it if the light isn't on." I haven't heard that in awhile, but I used to.

Reason enough for a little "magic". :evil:

ShortlinesUSA 06-08-2016 05:40 PM

Yep, I was hearing stuff like that said back in the days before Photoshop became a verb...


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