DAILY POST: Along the Pennsylvania Railroad

The Main Line at Night.

Here’s a pair of opportunistic images. I’d not gone out to make photographs, but while at dinner near Ardmore, Pennsylvania, I noted that Amtrak’s former Pennsylvania Railroad four-track Main Line ran adjacent to the car park.

After dinner, I wandered up to the tracks to investigate the potential for photography. At the edge of the car park was a sign post that I co-opted to use an impromptu camera support (I’d call this a ‘tripod’ but in fact it really was just a post), and placed my Lumix LX3 on the post.

Railroad at night
Looking east on the Main Line. Exposed with a Lumix LX3. I used the manual ‘m’ setting and gauged my exposure based upon my test-photo histogram.
Looking railroad-west on the Main Line toward Ardmore, PA. Exposed with a Lumix LX3. I used the manual 'm' setting and gauged my exposure based upon my test-photo histogram.
Looking railroad-west on the Main Line toward Ardmore, PA. Exposed with a Lumix LX3. I used the manual ‘m’ setting and gauged my exposure based upon my test-photo histogram.

The prevailing darkness and extreme contrast combined made for a tricky exposure. Instead of relying on the camera’s internal meter. I first made a test photo, then using that as a gauging point, set the camera to ‘over expose’ by about a full stop for each angle.

To avoid camera shake, I set the self-timer for 2 seconds, pressed the shutter button and stepped back. These are my results. It was cold, and I didn’t believe that any train movements were very close, so I didn’t opt to wait for a train.

Would have a train improved the scene?

 

See my earlier posts on night photography for suggestions and guidelines:

Lumix LX-3—part 2:  Existing Light Digital Night Shots;

New England Central at Night;

Palmer, Massachusetts 11:01pm November 30, 2012.

 Also, click to see related posts:

Vestiges of the Pennsylvania Railroad;

SEPTA in the Snow

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Railroad at night
Looking east on the Main Line. Exposed with a Lumix LX3. I used the manual ‘m’ setting and gauged my exposure based upon my test-photo histogram.

Tomorrow: Story behind a dramatic view of Wisconsin Central.

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