Maine Central’s Rockland, Maine Roundhouse—August 1980.

I was just a kid with a camera. Luckily, the camera was a Leica 3A.

I’d loaded it with Tri-X and exposed a few views around the Rockland, Maine roundhouse during a visit there with my family in August 1980.

Months later I processed the film in Microdol-X (not the best choice of developers, but it’s what I used at the time) and made a few tiny prints. Then I put the negatives in a paper envelope and mostly forgot about them.

Rockland, Maine in August 1980.

Two years ago, when looking for some other photos, I re-discovered the negatives in a big batch of missing photos, and scanned them at high-resolution with an Epson flatbed scanner.

This photo required a little post processing adjustment to improve tonality and even out contrast, while removing a few dust specs.

Tracking the Light Posts Every Day.

 

Click here to order Brian Solomon’s Railway Guide to Europe.

Lisburn Station on a Sunny Morning.

It was nearly two weeks ago that I exposed these views on a clear cold morning at NI Railway’s Lisburn Station.

There’s nothing like a polarized sky and low sun. The photos almost make themselves.

These were exposed using my Lumix LX7.

Soon afterward I was rolling along toward Portadown.

A clear blue dome; great conditions for photograph.
Lisburn Station is among the best preserved former Great Northern Railway stations.
GNR’s heralds are still in place on the canopy supports.

Tracking the Light Posts Daily.

Belfast-Dublin Enterprise at City Hospital—4 Views.

On two occasions on 27 March 2018, I made sequences of the Belfast-Dublin Enterprisepassing NI Railway’s City Hospital station.

The Enterpriseservice typically consists of a push-pull De Dietrich sets with a General Motors built 201-class diesel at the Belfast end.

These views were exposed using my FujiFilm XT1 with 18-135mm lens.

A southward Enterprise passes an NI Railways CAF set at City Hospital station.
A cab control car normally works the Dublin-end of the Enterprise, as pictured here.
Trailing view looking through the arches under Belfast’s Donegall Road toward the north junction connecting Great Victoria Street Station. (at right). That’s Irish Rail class-201 number 207 shoving at the back of the train. Hmm 207, so this is a continuation of yesterday’s post is it?
Horizontal version at the same location.

Tracking the Light Posts Every Day.

 

Class 201 Retrospective: Irish Rail 207—River Boyne; 7 photos.

One locomotive; Three variations on the Enterprise livery.

In the last 20 years, I’ve crossed paths with old 207 on a number of occasions. Often on the Enterprise,but elsewhere across Irish Rail as well.

When I first saw 207, it looked like this with a rectangular yellow patch at the ends. I exposed this view on a tour of Connolly shed in August 1999. It was made using a Nikon F3T with 24mm Nikkor lens on Fujichrome Sensia II (100 ISO). File adjusted in Lightroom for contrast and colour balance.
Irish Rail 207—River Boyne on the Enterprise at Belfast Central on 19 April 2000.

To my knowledge it was the only Enterprise201 to receive the large bright yellow patch at the ends, similar to the treatment given to orange 201s (201-205 and 210-215) beginning in 2005. [UPDATE: Kieran Marshall has reminded me that 233 was also treated with the large yellow patch at ends.]

Irish Rail 207 in it’s revised Enterprise livery with larger and brighter yellow ends. This view was exposed at Inchicore works on 15 April 2007. Just over 11 years ago.
Lets just say something was amiss with 207 on 10 December 2007, when Irish Rail 171 towed the failed class 201 (#207) across from Connolly to Inchicore. This view was made from my standard location at Islandbridge Junction in Dublin using a Canon EOS3 loaded with  Fujichrome slide film.

Today, it is one of several locomotives painted in the modern Enterprise livery with asymmetrical purple and scarlet swooshes along the sides.

Another view of Irish Rail 207 from the same vantage point, 9 years after the above image. This one was exposed digitally on 6 October 2016.
Same morning: 6 October 2016.
Nocturnal view at Islandbridge Junction of Irish Rail 207 working the Cork-Dublin Mark4 set on 21 January 2018.

Do you have a favorite class 201 locomotive?

Tracking the Light Posts Daily!

 

 

Gotthard Pass 15 April 2016—Two Years Ago Today.

On this day two years ago, my friends and I were exploring SBB’s magnificent crossing of Switzerland’s Gotthard Pass.

This was just a few months before the official opening of the new long base tunnel, which diverted most of the through traffic away from the traditional crossing.

Today, an hourly regional passenger service is the primary way to travel of the old line.

An SBB mixed freight ascends the old Gottard line at Gurtnellen. Behind me within the confines of the mountain is one of several spiral tunnels on the line.
An SBB ICN tilting train crosses the Intschireuss Bridge on the Gotthard Pass.

I made these views using my FujiFilm X-T1.

The Gotthard route is one of many scenic journeys profiled in my new book on European railways published by Kalmbach Publishing this Spring.

Click here to order Brian Solomon’s Railway Guide to Europe.

Tracking the Light Posts Every Day

Blue and Silver Train on a Gray Day.

I’d arrived at Adelaide Station in Belfast on this NI Railways 4000-series CAF railcar from Portadown.

Although it was windy, spitting rain and dull, and I had made photos at Adelaide at various times in recent months, I exposed this view anyway.

You never know when the common will seem fascinating. Someday something in this scene will be gone, and then the picture may take on new significance.

Lumix LX7 photo at Adelaide in Belfast.

Tracking the Light has posted daily for nearly five years.

Class 201 Retrospective: Irish Rail 206, the first of the Enterprise 201s.

As part of my 20 years in Ireland/201 numerical retrospective, this is my opportunity to present  a few views of Irish Rail 206.

When I first arrived in Ireland in 1998, 201-class locomotives numbers 206 to 209 (as they were then identified) were painted for the cross-border Belfast-Dublin Enterprisepassenger service.

On 4 March 2000 Irish Rail 206 works the Enterprise at Donabate. Exposed on Fujichrome Sensia II (ISO100) using a Nikon F3T.
On 11 May 2005, Irish Rail 2005 was ‘ex works’ following overhaul after its fire, making one of many trips on a Liner (point to point freight). It passes Islandbridge Junction, one of my often used locations. Exposed on Fujichrome using a Contax G2 rangefinder.
Same location, same train on 17 May 2005. Here I’m using a 135mm telephoto lens on my Nikon F3T to bring in the Wellington Testimonial (obelisk).
And almost the same angle on 16 December 2010, this time captured digitally using a Canon EOS 7D. So while these are three photos of the same locomotive on similar trains at essentially the same location, each features a different treatment as result of changes in lighting, season, type of camera, lens focal length, and the angle of composition.

It is my understanding that these four numbers were chosen for the Enterprise201s to pay historical tribute to steam locomotives of the same numbers that had worked the service in an earlier era.

In my time these were painted specifically for the re-equipped Enterprise using De Dietrich carriages (derived from the original French TGV single-level carriages)

Of the four, 206 River Liffey has been my favorite, but until relatively recently it is also one of the more elusive 201s in passenger service (in regards to my photography).

Around 2002, it suffered a fire and was out of traffic for about three years. When it returned, it spent months working freights.

Only recently, have I again found it regularly working as intended. It now wears the latest Enterprise livery, which is laterally asymmetrical and features a giant purple swoop across the side of the locomotive.

I made this digital photo of 206 at Belfast Central Station on 26 March 2018, working as intended. Lumix LX7 photo. The high angle allows for good detail of the roof, which is not often seen from ground level.

Tracking the Light Posts Daily!

 

 

 

Wisconsin & Southern at Reedsburg, Wisconsin.

In July 2016, John Gruber and I photographed Wisconsin & Southern’s Reedsburg job on its run from Madison to Reedsburg.

Although, I made many digital photographs that day, I also exposed a few photos on Ilford Pan F using a vintage Leica IIIA fitted with a Nikkor f3.5 35mm lens.

Notice how the tonality and texture of the image draws your eye in a variety of directions. The effects of  tire tracks in the gravel and the pole shadows are enhanced through use of a monochromatic image making medium.

Reedsburg, Wisconsin in July 2016.

 

Brian Solomon’s Tracking the Light Posts Daily and sometimes twice.

Western Rail Corridor Train Arriving Limerick

On Saturday, 7 April 2018, I made these photos of an Irish Rail 2800-series railcar working a Western Rail Corridor service from Galway arriving at Limerick’s Colbert Station.

I used my Lumix LX7, then working with the RAW files in Lightroom, made nominal adjustments to colour temperature, contrast and highlight density.

Lumix LX7 photo at Limerick.
Lumix LX7 photo.

Tracking the Light Posts has posted Daily for almost five years.

 

 

Irish Rail 074 at Limerick; A study in contrast—Four New Photos.

Under the train shed at Limerick’s Colbert Station is dark and gloomy.

Outside it had been raining.

Then the clouds drew back and brilliant midday sun blasted across the city.

Bright sun and inky shadows.

I made these views using my Lumix LX7 on Saturday, 7 April 2018.

Irish Rail 074 catches a wink of light under the train shed at Limerick Colbert Station.
Contrast of light and dark makes for a study in silhouette and vivid daylight. (File adjusted in post processing).
Irish Rail 074 up close and personal.
How many years has it been since Irish Rail last used the gantry for revenue freight at Limerick?

Tracking the Light Posts Daily. 

Tracking the Light Extra: Interviewed in Bristol.

Today I flew from Dublin to Bristol (UK) to be interviewed by Michael Cove of Australia’s WildBear TV.

My conversations included history of railways in the UK, Ireland, mainland Europe and North American among other places.

Although it may not be used, I gave my new book a plug.

Here’s a few Lumix photos from the trip.

Boarding at Dublin Airport.
My new guide book on European Railway Travel on the plane with a cup of Barry’s Tea.
The weather is foul in Bristol.
There I am waiting for the cameras to begin rolling. Photo by the camera crew.

I haven’t seen any steel wheel vehicles, but I made a photo of a bus.

I’m waiting for the hop back to Dublin; Bristol airport has free wifi!

Tracking the Light Posts Everyday.

RPSI’s The Branch Line Wanderer-Part 2

Here’s another section of images from last Saturday’s The Branch Line Wanderer, an RPSI excursion that visited various Irish secondary lines.

I exposed these photos using my FujiFilm X-T1.

The trip was operated by Railway Preservation Society of Ireland in conjunction with Irish Rail.

Limerick.
Cloughjordan on the Nenagh Branch.Cloughjordan on the Nenagh Branch.
Cloughjordan on the Nenagh Branch.
Cloughjordan on the Nenagh Branch.
Irish Rail down Mark 4 at Thurles.
Irish Rail up Mark 4 at Thurles.
Sunset from RPSI train near Templemore.

 

Brian Solomon’s Tracking the Light  publishes daily!

18 New Photos: RPSI’s The Branchline Wanderer—Retro Diesel Train Flashback.

Yesterday, 7 April 2018, Railway Preservation Society of Ireland in conjunction with Irish Rail operated its The Branchline Wanderer.

This covered several lightly traveled lines, including the Waterford-Limerick Junction section, which was a favorite of mine in years gone by.

The trip was well patronized. Despite wildly varying weather, I found numerous opportunities for interesting photos of RPSI’s train, its crew and passengers, and the places we visited.

Special thanks to RPSI’s Operating Crews and Irish Rail staff for an excellent day out.

Bagnalstown.

 

Bagnalstown.

Waterford.
Waterford.
Waterford.
Waterford.
Coach D.
Waterford.

 

Carrick-on-Suir.
Carrick-on-Suir.
Carrick-on-Suir.
Clonmel.
Cahir.
Cahir.
Cahir.

This display  represents the first few hours of photos exposed with my FujiFilm XT1. This was one of four cameras I used on the day. More photos to follow.

 

Tracking the Light Posts Daily!

Prelude to RPSI’s Branchline Explorer—7 April 2018

If everything has gone according to plan, as you read this I’m traveling upon Railway Preservation Society of Ireland’s diesel-hauled Branchline Explorer rail tour.

I made this photo on 6 April 2018 of Irish Rail 071 (in 1970s heritage livery) leading the RPSI preserved Cravens carriages across the River Liffey at Islandbridge in the fading light of the evening.

Thanks to Jay Monaghan!

An Irish Rail ICR working Grand Canal Docks suburban service exits the Phoenix Park Tunnel on 6 April 2018. Irish Rail 071 with RPSI Cravens can be seen in the distance. Exposed digitally using a FujiFilm X-T1 camera fitted with a 90mm f2.0 telephoto lens.
An instant classic: Irish Rail 071 (class leader in retro paint) leads the RPSI Cravens across the River Liffey at Islandbridge in Dublin. Exposed digitally using a FujiFilm X-T1 camera fitted with a 90mm f2.0 telephoto lens.

Tracking the Light Posts Daily!

 

A Year Ago Today: Rome

On 6 April 2017, I spent the morning in Rome researching for my new book on European Railways.

You can order Brian Solomon’s Railway Guide to Europe from Kalmbach Books.

https://kalmbachhobbystore.com/product/book/01304

These photos were exposed using my Lumix LX7.

Roman City Gate.
Antique Roman trams and city wall.
Narrow gauge interurban tram at Centocelle, which was effectively the end of the line on the day I visited.
An Alstom-built electric railcar at Roma Termini.
Rome’s Airport train at Roma Termini. Then off to the airport to Dublin.

Tracking the Light Posts Daily!

Ireland’s Most Colourful Train?

Easter Monday, photographer Jay Monaghan and I were in position at Memorial Road in Dublin to catch the RPSI carriage transfer on its way from Connolly Station to Inchicore.

These were the same carriages featured in yesterday’s post, ‘Steam Crosses Dublin’s Loop Line’.

Getting from Dubin’s city centre to Memorial Road, required a well-timed sprint to catch the 25B bus.

Although we were hoping for Irish Rail 073 in heritage paint, 201-class locomotive 232 in silver, green and  yellow added colour to RPSI’s heritage train.

Irish Rail 232 leads RPSI’s Cravens up the gullet on Easter Monday. Exposed using a FujiFilm X-T1 digital camera.
Tight telephoto trailing view of the RPSI train heading toward Inchicore Works.
Although the train is slightly more distant, I prefer this training view because the trees to the left of the line aren’t cropped.

So, was this Ireland’s most colourful train on Easter Monday 2018?

Tracking the Light Posts Every Day!

Steam Crosses Dublin’s Loop Line.

This scene presented three visual challenges;

  • Dublin’s Loop Line is a difficult bridge to picture trains upon owing to a high degree of foreground and background clutter, complex lattice girder construction, and brightly coloured graffiti.
  • Tank locomotive number 4 is an awkward mass and largely painted black that makes for a hard subject to picture satisfactorily, even on a good bright day.
  • It wasn’t a bright day; the lighting conditions were flat (low contrast) and bland.

Further complicating matters, there wasn’t more than a few seconds warning before the train entered the scene, so I needed to be poised.

Friends on board assisted my timing by keeping me up to date as to the location of the train.

I made my views from the Rosie Hackett Bridge (opened in 2014) looking down river toward Dublin Port.

Rather than work with a zoom, I opted for my fixed focal length 90mm telephoto on my FujiFilm X-T1. This gave me a wider aperture, allowed for shallow depth of field to help distinguish the train from its background, and is a very sharp lens  corner to corner.

DART electric suburban trains made for opportunities to make practice photos to test exposure, depth of field, focus and composition.

As the train clattered across the bridge I made several exposures, trying to minimize the distractions of bridge infrastructure and background clutter.

My first view of RPSI No. 4 on the bridge. This subtly shows Dublin port in the distance and features traffic on the south quays.
This is probably the best of my efforts. I adjust the contrast locally to help emphasize the smoke from the engine. I suppose that’s cheating in some eyes, but all I did was enhance the smoke to help show direction and that the engine was working and not static.
How about this view of RPSI’s nice painted Cravens carriages? The rippled patters in the Liffey was an attraction of this angle.

Although these are nice attempts, I’m not 100 percent satisfied, but without better light and an elevated view, I’m not sure how I could have made substantially better photos.

Tracking the Light Posts Daily.

Santa Fe in the Tehachapis: On This Day 25 Years Ago.

This was one of dozens of Kodachrome slides I exposed in California’s Tehachapi mountains on April 3, 1993—25 Years ago today.

Fellow photographer Brian Jennison and I were on an epic excursion making images of Southern Pacific and Santa Fe trains.

For this view I’m standing on a hillside near Tunnel 2 looking toward Bealville of a westward Santa Fe intermodal train. It was a beautiful Spring morning and the purple lupin flowers were in bloom.

Exposed on Kodachrome 25 with a Nikon F3T fitted with a 35mm perspective control lens (with adjustable front element).

Tracking the Light Posts Every Day.

DART in the Snow.

On the 18th of March, snow fell in Dublin, again.

I made these views at Connolly Station of a southward DART suburban train using my FujiFilm XT1.

The trick is not underexposing the snow.

Falling snow can make for a great sense of depth.

Connolly Station, Dublin.

Tracking the Light Posts Daily!

Tracking the Light EXTRA: Happy Birthday Conrail!

The Consolidated Rail Corporation began operations on April 1, 1976.

During the 1980s and 1990s, I made thousands of Kodachrome slides of Conrail operations. Conrail was divided between Norfolk Southern and CSX in Spring 1999.

In August 1988, I exposed this view from Tifft Street in Buffalo of a westward Conrail intermodal train working the Water Level Route.

Tim Doherty and I authored a book on Conrail in 2004.

Exposed on Kodachrome 25 with a Leica M2 and 90mm Leitz Elmarit lens. I cross-lit the train in an effort to emphasize the Buffalo skyline and help distinguish the four track line.

Tracking the Light Posts Daily!

 

 

 

 

NI Railways Celebrates 50 Years Today!—1 April 2018

NI Railways marks 50 today!

The other day, I made a few views of the celebration stickers and posters.

Lumix LX7 photo.

To help celebrate, I’m also posting a view I made of an old 80-class railcar at Whitehead back on 19 April 2000.

19 April 2000 at Whitehead. Fujichrome photo exposed with a Nikon.

Tracking the Light Posts Daily!

Milk Tram at St Stephens Green—LUAS Avonmore Ad Tram Round 2!

Two weeks ago, I was traveling south on the LUAS Green Line from Marlborough Street to Harcourt Street, when I spotted the one-of-a-kind LUAS Avonmore advertising tram taking the bend around Dublin’s St. Stephens Green.

My Lumix is always at the ready, so I made a few grab shots from the windows of the tram, which was bound for Broombridge.

I’d worked out in my head roughly how long it would take for it to make a return trip, and did some shopping to kill time.

An hour later I returned to the curve and made a few more photos of the same tram going the other way.

Dawson Street.
Trams crossing at Dawson Street.
Trailing view.

Tracking the Light Posts Every Day.

Class 201 Retrospective: Irish Rail 205 on the Move.

To mark my twenty years photographing Irish Railways, I’m posting images of each of Irish Rail’s 201-class General Motors diesels in numerical order.

A dozen years ago, I wouldn’t have found anything noteworthy in my photos of Irish Rail 205 at work. But that’s part of the point of this exercise.

You never know which photos will become interesting over time. The common becomes unusual; the normal become curious; the routine will seem exciting.

Irish Rail’s signalman at Castlerea hands the staff to the driver of engine 205 as it passes the cabin on its way up to Dublin on 9 April 2005.
Irish Rail 205 crests Ballybrophy bank on 3 June 2006 on its way to Cork from Dublin. Exposed on Fujichrome using a Contax G2 rangefinder with Zeiss 28mm Biogon lens.

Tracking the Light Posts Every Day.

 

 

Location Location Location: Making Claude Road Work.

I was trying think of a title that would get you to read this!

The Claude Road footbridge in Dublin offers an interesting vantage point for Irish Rail, but comes with its fair share of challenges.

It’s a location on an S-bend, which is a good thing, but also a visual puzzle, calling for the optimal lens-camera combination to yield satisfactory results.

I like the location because of the old mill in the distance to the west, and the views of Croke Park stadium to the east that offer distinctive location identification.

An Irish Rail ICR heading east for Connolly Station approaches Claude Road.
A slightly wider view of the same train.
An inbound 29000 series railcar heads toward Drumcondra Station, Croke Park looms in the distance.
An outbound 29000 series railcar some a similar vantage point.
To make the most of this image, I adjusted contrast and exposure in post processing.
Irish Rail 077 works ‘light engine’ toward Inchicore. This is a trailing view to make the most of the morning sunlight.

High railings at the center part of the footbridge can make it difficult for me to obtain the perfect angle, without aid of a footstool or tilting rear camera display.

I made these views on a sunny morning with my FujiFilm X-T1 with 18-135mm lens. The Fuji’s adjustable rear display allows me to hold the camera at arm’s length over the bridge railing..

Tracking the Light Posts Daily.

Working With Glint: Cherry Orchard and a Late Running Liner.

Last week, Irish Rail operated a late IWT liner that departed Dublin in the evening, instead on its normal mid-morning path.

A group of my friends went to Cherry Orchard in the west Dublin suburbs to capture this relatively unusual move. While waiting for the freight, I made views of the evening passenger parade.

The sky was clear of clouds and sun was aligned with the Cork line making some interesting possibilities of glint and silhouette photographs.

In the 1990s, I exposed hundreds of images in this type of dramatic lighting conditions. The characteristics of Kodachrome 25 slide film made it well suited to glint photographs and I had my K25 exposures refined to a high art.

Glint photographs are more difficult to capture digitally, and I find that I have to control contrast and use digital masks/digital applied graduated neutral density filters in post processing to obtain the results that I expect.

An up-cork with a Mark 4 push-pull set catches the evening glint at Cherry Orchard.
I made this view of a down road Intercity Railcar from the north side of the line.

 

Irish Rail’s IWT liner roars toward the setting sun.
Glint light is an excellent means of capturing the drama of railways in motion.

Key to this exercise is underexposing a raw file sufficiently to retain detail in the sky and glinty areas of the image, than lighten shadows while making localized highlight adjustments in post processing.

These photos were made using my FujiFilm X-T1.

Tracking the Light Posts Daily!

Dublin by Night: 1000 shades of Dark.

I’d use ‘gray’ in place of ‘dark’, but apparently the phraseology has assumed new meanings.

I could just say ‘Dublin in Black & White’, but that isn’t really correct either.

Working with my Nikon F3 loaded with Foma Classic 100 black & white film, I made these photos during March 2018 wintery weather in Dublin.

To keep my camera steady for long exposures, I used various tripods, depending on the surface and circumstance.

Irish Rail’s Loop Line bridge over the River Liffey.

My exposures varied, but most were between 1 and 8 seconds. I calculated exposure manually using a Minolta IV Flash meter (in reflective mode).

I processed the Fomapan 100 film in Ilford ID-11 stock mixed 1-1 with water at 68F for 7 minutes 15 seconds, plus pre-soak with a token amount of Kodak HC110, then scanned negatives using an Epson V500 flatbed scanner.

Brian Solomon’s Tracking the Light Posts Daily!

Class 201 Retrospective: Irish Rail 204 in four photos.

The unremarkable 204.

Not as rare to my lens as 202, but not as common as say 201, 205, or the seeming omnipresent 215. Today, views of 204 on the move are still pretty neat since it’s been more than eight years since it turned a wheel.

These are all Fujichrome photos, since I never photographed 204 at work using a digital camera. Maybe someday it will return to service. But even then I might take it on slide film for old time sake.

Can you spot the ‘bad’ photo? (read the captions)

Irish Rail 204 races down road at Ballybrophy on 7 April 2007.
Nearly 12 years ago, freshly paint Irish Rail 204 passes Cherryville Junction.
One for the bin? Here we have a fascinating photo of Irish Rail in transition; I exposed this view almost ten years ago to the day: March 2008. Locomotive 204 leads Mark 3s west at Islandbridge Junction as a new Mark 4 set rolls up-road; at left is a four-wheel ballast train led by a pair of Bo-Bos (class 141/181 General Motors diesels), with another Bo-Bo at right working as a station pilot. Look to the upper right in the yard and you’ll see a set of new Rotem ICRs. But this was bad photo: never mind all the railway action, I committed a compositional faux pas; I chopped the top of the Wellington Testimonial in the Phoenix Park! That’s it, pitch the photo! Nothing to see here!
On another day, Irish Rail 204 leads the Platin-Tullamore cement. I was disappointed that an 071 didn’t work the train, but I’m sure glad I made this photo anyway!

Tracking the Light Posts Every Day!

 

 

My Photo of Kent Station Appears in Michael B. Barry’s New Book.

Michael B. Barry’s beautiful new book on Málaga makes the connection between two Kent Stations, one in Cork the other in Málaga. Both were named for politically active Kents who were related.

Michael’s book is available from Andulas Press.

My photo is at the bottom of page 80, and depicts Cork’s Kent Station. The top photo is of Victoria Kent Station in Málaga.
This is the cover of Michael B. Barry’s new book

Tracking the Light Posts Daily!

RPSI’s The Midlander in Colour.

As a follow-up to my black & white posts: On Sunday, 18 March 2018, I also worked with my two digital cameras to expose a few choice photographs of Railway Preservation Society of Ireland’s The Midlander on its run from Connolly Station Dublin to Maynooth.

Also see: https://wp.me/p2BVuC-5nz

Telephoto view at Connolly. This is a colour photograph, but has the contrast and texture of a black & white image. Are the red signals an improvement or a distraction?
Looking back at the train from tank engine number 4.
Irish Rail 073 in heritage paint brought the RPSI train over from Inchicore Works to Connolly Station.
Engine No. 4 hauled the excursion.

An NI Railways CAF train arrives at Connolly substituting for the normal Enterprise set.
Approaching Glasnevin Junction in Dublin.
Working the Midland route toward Maynooth.
Running around at Maynooth.
Number 4 with its admirers at Maynooth.

My new book ‘Brian Solomon’s Railway Guide to Europe features RPSI trains in its section on Ireland.

This is due out in May 2018 and may be pre-ordered from Kalmbach Books: https://kalmbachhobbystore.com

For details on  RPSI and passenger excursions see: https://www.steamtrainsireland.com

Tracking the Light is Daily!

Steam on Retropan.

On one level, it seems appropriate to make images of steam locomotives and their environment with Retropan. ‘Retro on Retro’ right?

Yet, I know many old-school black & white photographers would object to the essential qualities of Retropan black & white film, which by design is comparatively soft and grainy.

Yes, there are sharper films; and of course there’s colour, not to mention digital, but the reason I chose Foma Retropan for these photos was because of the gritty quality it offers.

Someone might ask why does the RPSI run a steam locomotive, when there are more efficient diesel railcars available?

Connolly Station, exposed on Retropan 18 March 2018.
Connolly Station, exposed on Retropan 18 March 2018.

Ooo! Look an efficient diesel railcar. And it’s on Retropan too! Drumcondra, Dublin.
Approaching Glasnevin Junction, Dublin.
Maynooth.
Locomotive number 4 at Maynooth. Notice the modern signal in the distance and the bright lamps on the locomotive.

 

Psssst! I also made some colour slides, and a whole bunch of colour digital image on the same day.

Tracking the Light Posts Every Day!

My new book ‘Brian Solomon’s Railway Guide to Europe features RPSI trains in its section on Ireland.

It is due out in May 2018 and may pre-order the book from Kalmbach Books: https://kalmbachhobbystore.com

For details on  RPSI and passenger excursions see: https://www.steamtrainsireland.com

Atmosphere under the old Roof.

A couple more Tri-X views from Connolly Station of last Sunday’s RPSI steam trip to Maynooth.

See my earlier post: Snow! Steam! Action!

https://wp.me/p2BVuC-5nz

Exposed on Kodak Tri-X using a Nikon F3 with 35mm lens.
Exposed on Kodak Tri-X using a Nikon F3 with 35mm lens.

For details on RPSI steam and diesel excursions see: Railway Preservation Society of Ireland.

Tracking the Light Posts Daily!

 

Snow! Steam! Action!

It was cold and snowy at Dublin’s Connolly Station last Sunday.

While snow complicated Railway Preservation Society of Ireland’s planned trips to Maynooth, it made for ideal conditions to expose black & white photos.

Using my Nikon F3 with 35mm and 135mm lens, I made these images on platform 3.

My new book ‘Brian Solomon’s Railway Guide to Europe features RPSI trains in its section on Ireland.

It is due out in May 2018 and may pre-order the book from Kalmbach Books: https://kalmbachhobbystore.com

For details on  RPSI and passenger excursions see: https://www.steamtrainsireland.com

RPSI No 4.

All were exposed using Kodak Tri-X black & white film, which I processed in Ilford ID-11 (1-1 at 68 degrees F for 7 minutes 45 seconds, plus extended presoak with very dilute HC110 to pre-activate development.)

I scanned the negatives  using an Epson V500 flatbed scanner.

RPSI No 4.

More snowy steam images images to follow!

Tracking the Light Posts Daily

I stood here for what? Fool in the Rain: Irish Weather Part 2.

Having a little information can be a dangerous thing.

Irish Rail’s 073 in heritage paint was working the IWT  liner.

It’s just a short walk to Islandbridge Junction.

In theory, if I timed my walk right I wouldn’t have to wait more than a couple of minutes.

And then for reasons unknown, Irish Rail held the IWT Liner in the Phoenix Park tunnel for 20 minutes. Twenty minutes seems like eternity when some fool is waiting in the rain.

Was it worth it?

Exposed digitally using a FujiFilm XT1 with f2.0 90mm lens. (f2.5 1/500 second at ISO 400)
Screen shot showing camera EXIF data.

Tracking the Light Posts Daily!

Irish Rail 073 in Heritage Paint at Dublin’s North Wall.

Irish Rail 073 was repainted in 2017 into heritage orange paint.

When I arrived in Ireland 20 years ago, most locomotives were in some variation of this orange-livery. Today, 073 is a novelty.

The bright orange with white trimming makes for a great subject, even on cloudy days since its stands out well from the background.

I made these views last week at Dublin’s North Wall of the arriving IWT Liner.

FujiFilm XT1 with 90mm lens.
FujiFilm XT1 with 90mm lens.
FujiFilm XT1 with 90mm lens.
FujiFilm XT1 with 90mm lens.

Tracking the Light Posts Everyday.

Fool in the Rain, Irish Weather Part 1.

On the way to Belfast from Dublin a couple of weeks ago, the rain lashed down. Instead of changing trains at Portadown, I opted to remain dry a little long and remained on the Enterprise all the way to Belfast Central.

It was still cloudy in Belfast, but the rain had stopped.

I traveled to Great Victoria Street, then changed for an all stops NI Railways train and alighted at Adelaide just as the clouds receded and bright evening light prevailed.

An express to Lisburn passes Adelaide. You’d hardly know that an hour earlier it was lashing rain.
A few minutes later, a 4001-series CAF passes on an all stops service. This pair of photos offers a good comparison between the 3001 and 4001 series CAF railcars employed by NIR.
NIR 4010 slows for its station stop at Adelaide.

I exposed these views with my FujiFilm XT1 fitted with a Fujinon 18-135mm zoom lens.

So I wasn’t a fool in the end; or was I?

If I’d changed at Portadown, I would have arrived at Adelaide sooner and I may have photographed a train with a rainbow.

Tracking the Light Posts Daily.

Railway photography by Brian Solomon

%d bloggers like this: