Drew's Fantastic Train Photo Adventure: What a ride!

Posted by D-Halv
on Monday, August 01, 2011

Top of the morning! Today marks the end of my month-long photo journey. It's been a challenge but fun, and I can walk away knowing that I found plenty of new photo opportunities in the Milwaukee area. Thanks for following along and sharing your comments. Check back later this week for a full recap!

July 29

FedEx MultiModal in MilwaukeeA FedEx MultiModal crosses the mouth of the Menomonee River on this hot BNSF detour train in downtown Milwaukee. The train heads south to Chicago. Canon EOS 30D, 7/29/2011, 1/6 sec, f/18, ISO 100, 55mm. Drew Halverson photo

What I like: 

The windows in Milwaukee's Third Ward area burning with summer sunshine, the motion of the scene around the piggyback trailers, and the rare train all make this a personal favorite! The blurry traffic lights beneath the FedEx trailer seal the deal.

What I don't like: 

Nothing. This turned out just how I envisioned.

What I learned: 

Persistence is key. I took over 40 shots of this train with the pan-blur method and only a handful turned out with sharp trailers and blurry scenery. These photos take practice.

July 30

Canadian Pacific MP15 No. 1447Canadian Pacific MP15 No. 1447 leads the Lake Job over Kinnickinnic Avenue near the Port of Milwaukee. Canon EOS 30D, 1/1000 sec, f/7.1, ISO 160, 161mm. Drew Halverson photo

What I like: 

This bridge reminds me of an old wooden roller coaster. There's nothing better than seeing a train of this size, loaded with double stacks, rumble down to the port. The black-and-white treatment feels right to me, too.

What I don't like: 

Again, I'm struggling here ... help me out, people.

What I learned: 

This location is really cool and usually available during the late afternoons when the Lake Job works the port. I have plenty of great angles around this bridge, so the photo options are plentiful!

July 31

Canadian PacificTwo Canadian Pacific eastbounds wait at Maple Avenue for the Kinnickinnic swing bridge to undergo maintenance, as night envelopes the city of Milwaukee. Canon EOS 30D, 7/30/2011, 3.2 sec, mini tirpod, f/22, f/4.0, ISO 100, 161mm. Drew Halverson photo

What I like: 

The summer night look to this popular location in Milwaukee. I also like having the opportunity to show a couple of trains lined up, ready to roll, providing a nice mood. The lights reflecting on the rails cap it off!

What I don't like: 

This shot didn't turn out as sharp as I would've liked, and it's a little grainy.

What I learned: 

With a mini-tripod and the camera's timer, I was able to pull off some decent night shots here. Without a remote shutter, I used the timer to make sure the camera would be completely stationary when the the shutter opened. Since the trains were parked, I knew they'd be still, too. Then, I was able to experiment with different camera settings to achieve my desired effect.

Galleries: 

Flickr: "Drew's Fantastic Train Photo Adventure, 2011"
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