Tag Archives: #Jersey Avenue

NJ Transit with Soft Glint—a Lesson in Light

Air pollution, fluffy clouds and very low sun can create some wonderful soft lighting.

Evening glint is a fleeting ephemeral condition.

The Northeast Corridor in central New Jersey is an ideal place to make use of soft glint.

Long tangent sections of track, a favorable north-east to southwest alignment and ample quantities of air-pollution plus very frequent service, allow for excellent opportunities as the light shifts and fades.

I made these photographs at Jersey Avenue in New Brunswick.

Exposed using anFujiFilm X-T1 digital camera with 18-135mm lens. Camera set at ISO 1000, 1/180 of a second at f7.1. Here I’ve set the white balance to ‘auto’, however typically I recommend that for glint photography a white balance setting for ‘daylight’ will yield redder more impressive photos.
ISO 1250, f5.6 1/250th using the Fujifilm ‘Velvia’ color profile, with white balance set to ‘auto’.

Getting the exposure right is crucial for successful glint photos.

I usually use manual settings. I’ve found that when exposing for glint light it is important pay careful attention to the highlight  and shadow areas.

I avoid clipping the highlights (as result of over exposure), but also make sure that I don’t stop down (reducing the amount of light reaching the sensor ) too much, which will make the shadows completely opaque.

Tracking the Light posts Every Day!

Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor Revisited: Jersey Avenue—Then and Now.

It was a warm April afternoon in 1978 when my father and I arrived at Jersey Avenue to make photos.

For me this was a thrill. The long tangent in both directions seemed to reach to the horizon, and the trains passed at tremendous speed.

It was also one of my earliest experiences working with a long telephoto lens.

Pop had fitted his 200mm Leitz Telyt with Visoflex to my Leica 3A.

The Visoflex provided me with an equivalent to an SLR (single lens reflex) arrangement for a rangefinder camera by using a mirror with prism to see through the lens.

A New York-bound Metroliner races along the old Pennsylvania Railroad at Jersey Avenue, New Brunswick, New Jersey. I hadn’t figured out how to focus quickly yet.
My trailing view of the Metroliner was more successful.

Where I was well used to the peculiarities of Leica’s pre-war rangefinder arrangement, using the Visoflex offered a new set of challenges, especially in regards to focusing.

Jersey Avenue April 1978: there I am age 11. Photo by Richard J. Solomon
This southward Amtrak long distance train was led by one of Amtrak’s E60 electrics. I was disappointed as I’d hoped for a GG1.
Check out all the great old streamlined cars. At the time I was so concerned about making this image, I didn’t really appreciate the details of the train.

Fast forward to December 2016. Pat Yough and I were exploring locations on Amtrak’s North East Corridor. I suggested Jersey Avenue because I was curious to see if that was where Pop and I had made those photos so many years ago. (Back in 1978, my photo notes were a bit thin).

Indeed it was. So we made a few photos from approximately the same spot before investigating other locations. Compare my December 2016 views with my much earlier attempts.

Amtrak 93 races through Jersey Avenue in December 2016.
Trailing view of Amtrak 93 at Jersey Avenue.