|"Coming Around the Bend!"|
(C) Allen Pearson, All Rights Reserved
Railroad Photography, or as I'm starting to call it "Railroad Art," is becoming a fascination to me. While I've spent several years learning to photograph nature, dogs, cats, and gardens, this will be a new venture with new ideas for me.
To start with, "safety" is a huge issue. Unlike my current interests, the risks are known and can pretty much be planned or prepared for. While I have a few safety concerns like not finding a Copperhead snake near my legs when I'm trying to photograph the beautiful sunset by the lake, being surprised by a bear, being bit by a dog or scratched by a cat. To be safe, I read up on whatever I need to be cautious with, more than a few times before I go out- especially if it's something I haven't done in a while. The risks here are slight as most areas where I photograph nature, there are others around and most wildlife isn't interested in bothering us.
For railroad photography, it's basically simple and common sense: STAY OFF THE RAILROAD TRACKS and STAY OFF RAILROAD PROPERTY. Simple as that. As I have photographed trains in various areas of Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and now exploring Maryland, one consistent theme comes to mind, I do not always hear the trains coming. Staying off the tracks not only keeps me in compliance with local and federal laws, it keeps me alive and well and able to go see another train coming.
Back in the day, when I was a young sprat, no not quite back to the steam engine, when I would listen for trains then run to the front porch of my grandmother's house to watch them go by, the locomotives were noisy. I knew the train was coming, like well in advance, so I was prepared. Today, the locomotives and trains are much quieter.
Since I photograph dogs, cats, horses, and gardens, I do not have reasons or even thoughts about taking my clients on the railroad tracks to photograph them. However, as a photographer when I am work to create my "Railroad Art," I do not want to photograph in a way that looks like I am standing on railroad tracks to get the shot. Why? While I have learned my photography art from looking at what others have done, learning techniques, and finding my style, other photographers might see my work- if I stand on the tracks, they might too.
Stay off the railroad tracks and railroad property. There are plenty of safe places to photograph railroads and trains.
#USRailSafetyWeek, #NorfolkSouthern, #OperationLifesaver, #RailroadPhotography, #RailroadArt