Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Railroad Outlaws

 The other day I decided to take a few hours and travel to Galveston and do some photography.  In the small village of Bayou Vista, Texas I stopped to put fuel in my white Ford truck.  As I was pumping the fuel I noticed several locomotives sitting idle on the tracks across the roadway.  I decided to drive over and check it out, and possibly get a shot or two to start off my day.

 After arriving I realized that I would need to walk out on to the railroad tracks in order to get the photo I wanted, but I knew entering railroad property was against the law.  Since there wasn't anyone around I thought the chance of getting caught would be minimal.

 As I sat in my truck unpacking my camera and getting my tripod ready I looked up to see a white pickup truck slowly driving toward me. I thought to myself, crap it's a railroad worker and they are going to tell me to leave before I get the photo. As the truck approached and eased along side me the man driving looked at me and I looked at him.  Eye to eye we did not exchange any waves, smiles or friendly head nods.  This can't be good I thought.

 The truck passed me and turned around on the narrow road and parked about fifty yards behind me.  I watched through my side mirror to see what he was going to do.  Thoughts raced through my mind, was he writing down my license plate number, calling for backup, loading his shot gun... who knew?   After what seeming like an eternity he exited the vehicle holding something in his hands and began walked towards my vehicle.  I watched his progress, preparing myself for what was coming.  About half way he stopped and  lifted a Nikon camera to his eye, aimed it at the locomotives and snapped off a few shots and then turned back to his truck.

 Whew! Just another photographer. I then jumped out of my truck walked out onto the railroad tracks and took my photos.  As he drove away he gave me a big smile and a wave good-bye.

This is a High Dynamic Range (HDR) image composed of three exposures (0, -2 and +2 stops) using a Canon EOS 7D and Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS lens @ 70mm on a very sturdy tripod. The properly exposed image was shot in Av mode using ISO 100, F/22 at 1/40 second. The three RAW images where combined and tone mapped using Photomatix 3.0 and further processed using Lightroom 3.0.
All images copyright Daniel Ray Photography.

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