When you make a lot of photos it is crucial to review and edit the images to select the most appropriate photos for presentation.
But what are the most appropriate images? I’ve often found that my second review of a batch of images will reveal a more interesting selection than the first edit.
The day of our special trip on RDC Millie for our wedding guests, I’d forgotten to pack my SD card reader. However, since my brother lent me a clever device I was able download selected photos from my Panasonic Lumix LX7’s SD card directly to my Apple iPhone. I posted a few of those images on Sunday.
Last night, while recovering from Sunday’s celebrations, I had the time to download and review all of the photos from Saturday’s trip and make the most of them.
Below is my ‘second edit’ from Saturday, September 17th, 2022.
On January 4, 2020, I met my future fiancée at Mass Bay Railroad Enthisiast’s ‘Steam in the Snow’ event held at Conway Scenic Railroad—where I’d been appointed manager of marketing & events just a few weeks earlier.
I met Kris on the platform of the North Conway Station, where I said, ‘hello’, and was properly introduced by mutual friend Doug Scott a little while later.
At Notchland we all stood together to make photos.
Tomorrow, Sunday September 18, 2022, we are getting married in Lincoln, New Hampshire.
Last Friday, Conway Scenic’s president and general manager Dave Swirk, asked if I could be available on Monday (September 12) to document the moving of steam locomotive 501 into the North Conway Roundhouse for the first step in its restoration evaluation.
Locomotive 501 is an Alco 2-8-0 built for Maine Central and was a regular freight locomotive on Maine Central’s Mountain Division for many years. It had been part of the Steamtown collection, but when Steamtown relocated from Vermont to Pennsylvania in the 1980s the locomotive was moved to North Conway, N.H. for display.
Until yesterday, 501 had been prominently displayed in front of the North Conway freight house.
The railroad used former Maine Central GP7 573 to move the collection of freight and passenger cars behind the locomotive 501, and then hauled the locomotive from its resting place to the run around track (known as the ‘WA’) in front of the station.
Former Canadian National 0-6-0 7470 was fired up to complete 501’s move to the roundhouse, and I made a series of photos of the two locomotives together.
In addition to photos of the move, I also recorded video using the railroad’s Sony 4K capable video camera.
These images were made using my Nikon Z6 mirrorless camera and adjusted for color temperature, contrast, and exposure using Adobe Lightroom.
April 22, 1997: I ascended a footbridge over a busy Tokyo thoroughfare to make photos of the rarely captured Tokyo trolley.
Where most of the railway lines in Japan are meter-gauge, the Tokyo Trolley is unusual because it was an early use of 4 ft 8.5 inch gauge train in Japan. The other big users of ‘standard gauge’ in Japan are the Shinkansen routes.
In yesterday’s post, I described the compositional challenges of poles and wires near Bartlett, NH. Compare those images with the sea of poles and wires in this view!
Exposed on Fujichrome Velvia50 using a Nikon N90S with an AF f2.8 80-200mm Nikkor zoom lens.
Wednesday (August 24, 2022) I was running errands around North Conway-Conway, New Hampshire. Between stops, I paused for a few minutes at West Side Road to catch the 9:30am Conway train on its return to North Conway.
This featured former Maine Central GP38 252, a locomotive that isn’t often assigned to the Conway run.
Working with my Lumix LX7, I exposed this view as a RAW digital file, then processed the data using Adbe Lightroom to make the most of the image.
Yesterday, Kris and I traveled to the Connecticut Trolley Museum at East Windsor, where we met Daryl Mundis who presented me with the Railway & Locomotive Historical Society’s Fred A. and Jane R. Stindt Photography Award for 2020. This is one of five prestiguous Railroad History Awards they are presenting in various categories of achievement.
Six years ago, I made this trailing view of an Amtrak Pacific Surfliner bound for Los Angeles Union Station at Simi Valley, California.
The on-platform infomational signs were scrolling an ominous message about a Metrolink train that had been cancelled because of a mechanical issue. That’s a modern way of saying; ‘the train failed enroute and your going to be late’.
On my July 2015 visit to Finland, my host Markku Pulkkinen did an excellent job of finding interesting railway subjects.
Early in the morning on July 26, 2015, we set up on the outskirts of Oulu to catch VR T5220, a freight forwarding iron ore mined in Russia to a Finnish plant. The freight wagons were Russian, the locomotive is a VR Group class Sr2 electric of Swiss design.
I had just purchased my first Adobe Lightroom for my then-new Apple MacBook Pro and was beginning to learn how to use this tool to make the most of my Fuji RAW files.
This was a revelation as the programs sliders made it easy to make adjustments to shadow and highlight detail, as well as color temperature and color balance corrections, which help make for much better photos when used judiciously.
I’m now working with a more advanced version of Lightroom with this I created two JPGs created from the Fuji RAW file. The top was scaled without any adjustements; the bottom reflects adjustments to color temperature, saturation, plus highlight and shadow area changes. Notice the difference in the detail to the sky.
Yesterday morning (July 23, 2022), Kris and I timed our visit to Allens Siding Road to perfectly coincide with the operation of Conway Scenic Railroad steam locomotive 7470 on the 915am Conway train.
I’d scoped this location out the day before (featured in yesterday’s post) just make sure it was the best place to picture the steam locomotive working.
We arrived a minute before the eastbound train passed. (Conway Scenic timetable 34 predicates all movements on a east-west axis. Conway being the further station East and Hazens being the furthest west, without consideration for the compass).
After the eastward train passed, we had about a 20 minute wait for the return.
Engineer Wayne Duffett made a good show climbing the grade west from the Swift River Bridge.
All photos were exposed using my Nikon Z6 with a 24-70mm Z-series zoom and adjusted for contrast and color balance using Adobe Lightroom.
I’d been meaning to get some photos of Conway Scenic Railroad’s former Maine Central GP38 255 working New Hampshire’s Conway Branch in red paint.
The railroad acquired this pure Maine Central GP38 from the Vermont Rail System last autumn, and in recent weeks it has been the regular locomotive for the Valley Train, which makes three Conway trips.
The plan is have this locomotive painted in a neo-Maine Central scheme, similar to its sister GP38, number 252, which also serves Conway Scenic, so time may be getting short to get good photos of it in the red scheme.
These photos were exposed with my Nikon Z6 digital camera, but I also made a exposures on Ektachrome slide film for posterity.
I wonder, will the posterity even care about a red GP38 on the Conway Branch?
May 4, 1997: I exposed this Fujichrome slide of Amtrak’s westward Lake Shore Limited (Boston section), train 449 rolling down the Quaboag River Valley near the former Boston & Albany station at West Brimfield, Massachusetts.
This was at a time when the train was carrying a fair amount of freight and mail on the head and tail ends of the passenger consist, and shortly before Amtrak replaced the old EMD F40PHs with new Genesis P42 diesels.
It was just about two years before Conail’s class 1 operations were divided and the old Boston & Albany was conveyed to CSX.
Seven years ago, I exposed this photo of the northward Mass Central freight near Forest Lake, Massachusetts.
At the time, Mass Central was operating on a late schedule, departing northbound from Palmer in the evening, to accommodate heavy track work on the line during the day.
In this view, I used my FujiFilm XT1, and exposed an in-camera JPG at the same time as a much larger RAW file.
For point of comparison, I’ve displayed both the in-camera JPG (without alteration) and a JPG that is the product of post processing—created from the Fuji RAW image.
Choosing to work with the camera-RAW instead of the in-camera JPG, depends on the photo and its application. If the image needs little to no adjustment the JPG will save a lot of time. However in situations where it is desirable to make adjustments, the RAW file provides significantly more data, giving more room to maneuver, and can result in a better image.
Yesterday, July 1, 2022, I organized a broadcast at Conway Scenic Railroad by Lakes FM 101.5 and the Hawk 104.9 FM. In conjunction with this, I invited Ben and Danny of the band Eastwood Station to play some original music, and asked Conway Scenic general manager Dave Swirk if he could bring out steam locomotive 7470 to sound its whistle live on air.
It was a very successful day at North Conway!
In between radio spots, I made these photos with my Nikon Z6, some of which I put up on the railroad’s facebook, while recording the musicians and steam locomotive with digital video.
The railroad hopes to have the steam locomotive out of the roundhouse and under steam for display and training over the 4th of July weekend.
In July 1984, I made a few black & white photos of the Canadian Pacific station at Jackman, Maine using my old Leica 3A with 50mm Canon lens. At that time, Jackman still hosted VIA Rail’s Atlantic and was an open train order station. I had a conversation with the operator before I made my photos.
On my recent visits Jackman earlier this month, I tried to recreat the angle of my earlier eastbound view.
In both photos, I am standing at the Route 201 grade crossing.
The purpose of this comparison is to demonstrate the degree of change at Jackman in the 38-year interval between them. Notice that the 1984 view is far more interesting to look at despite being a technically inferior photograph.
The former Canadian Pacific Railway station building at Greenville Junction, Maine is a distinctive wooden structure dating to 1889. A local preservation group has embarked on a mission to preserve and restore the structure.
Since Kris and I visited Greenville Junction a year ago (June 2021), considerable work has been done to the station and it looks much improved!
On Wednesday (June 7, 2022), I walked from our lake-side cabin at Moosehead, Maine to Canadian Pacific’s East Outlet Bridge with the hope of catching the eastward 132 freight.
Not long after I arrived, the skies opened to a light drizzle. Gradually drizzle turned to a steady rain. The rain stirred up Maine’s famous mosquitoes. So after more than an hour of waiting under a tree, I was beginning to question my intentions. Yet having stood out in the elements, I decided to wait a while longer.
Finally, off to the west, I heard a distant train whistle! Hooray, it had to be CP’s 132! (Normally the railroad only operates one train east and one west every 24 hours.)
After another seven minutes, the sky brightened and a headlight came into view. By the time the train reached the East Outlet Bridge at Moosehead, the sun was out and shining brightly!
My perseverance was rewarded! Walking back to the cabin, I claimed this effort as a success.
On Monday (June 6, 2022), driving west on Maine Route 6, we had just passed Greenville Junction, Maine on our way to Moosehead.
Kris said, ‘hey, I hear a train!’
I suspected the eastward 132 might be close, so I quickly turned around and drove east on Rt 6 back to the bridge at Kellys Landing, immediately east of the old CP station at Greenville Junction. At one time Bangor & Aroostook lines connected with CP here, while a spur went below CP to serve docks on Moosehead Lake.
We had just a few moments to get ready. I grabbed my Lumix LX7 and framed up the eastward freight on the bridge and exposed a series of digital photos. My first CP Moosehead Subdivision photos since June 2021!
One notable exception was during the Winter-Spring 1978, when I exposed two rolls of Kodacolor II that had been given to me during the previous winter holidays as a gift.
On a bright April day, my father brought me along the Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor to photograph the passing trains, where I made the most of the second of two 36-exposure rolls.
Working with a Leica fitted with 200mm Telyt lens using a Visoflex (reflex attachment), I made this view at New Brunswick, New Jersey of a southward Amtrak train led by a relatively new General Electric E60CH crossing the Raritan River.
In 2016, I scanned my old negatives, which despite being stored in glassine envelopes had withstood the passage of time reasonably well.
Kodacolor film had a distinctive color palate.
All things being equal, I wish I’d made the photo on Kodachrome slide film, but considering I was only 11 years old, I did pretty well!
I made a series of exposures of Conway Scenic’s May 22nd special Railfan Photographer’s Mountaineer at Crawford, NH.
In these views the locomotives were fighting the light with the sun nearly behind the subject at a relatively high angle in the sky.
For this discussion, I underexposed the scene, which allowed me to retain detail in the sky and other highlight areas.
By importing the camera NEF RAW file into Lightroom I was able to make adjustments to the shadows and highlight areas to compensate for the undesirable effects of underexposure while retaining adequate detail across the exposure range.
This is in part possible because of Nikon Z6’s full-frame sensor with an enormous dynamic range.
Of the three views: The top is the uncorrected NEF file scaled for internet. The bottom two are screen shots of the Lightroom work window to show how I implemented changes to the NEF file before scaling for internet presentation.