Home Open Account Help 227 users online

Passenger Trains > Amtrak Acela No. 2038 at Dusk; Eddystone, PA


Date: 09/10/19 16:58
Amtrak Acela No. 2038 at Dusk; Eddystone, PA
Author: Mgoldman

A late evening Amtrak Acela Express, led by No. 2038, splits the former PRR signal
bridge as it rounds the curve northbound through Eddystone, PA - home of the former
Baldwin Locomotive Works. 

Taken back in August, on the 30th, 2019. 

/Mitch




Date: 09/10/19 17:36
Re: Amtrak Acela No. 2038 at Dusk; Eddystone, PA
Author: birdman

Outstanding.  How did you manage to take such a sharp photo of a fast moving subject in such low light?  I have a few ideas about how you did it but they may not be correct.  If you don't mind sharing your technique, I would appreciate learning from a master. 

birdman



Date: 09/10/19 18:13
Re: Amtrak Acela No. 2038 at Dusk; Eddystone, PA
Author: perklocal

A stunning image on many levels ! Wow !



Date: 09/10/19 19:07
Re: Amtrak Acela No. 2038 at Dusk; Eddystone, PA
Author: Mgoldman

 Thanks guys - as for "How did you manage to take such a sharp
photo of a fast moving subject in such low light?"

The hardest part, I suppose, is sticking around after you're done
getting all those easier to get shots before the Sun sets.  I did so
as I watched the colors get better and better - constantly re-setting
the ISO speeds higher and higher while setting the shutter speeds
lower, and lower... and lower.

This was taken at 6:30 pm at 1/160th(!) at f/5 ISO 2500.  I shot it
bright to preserve the details but then dropped the exposure a bit
in processing which better preserved the headlights while darkening
the sky somewhat.  An image at ISO 2500 with a Canon 5D Mark IV
will clean up pretty well with the right amount of noise reduction and
sharpening.  The need to shoot at f/5 meant loosing some depth of
feild as seen in the catenary which I thought was preferable to using
a higher ISO.  Typically, I shoot Acela's at 1/1250th - capturing one
at 1/160th was risky, but they run slower while rounding sharp curves
and add to that, after it rounded the bend, it was captured coming
at me vs left to right which helps considerably.  I'll note, had I shot it
with a camera with more dynamic range, like a Sony or Nikon, I likely
could've significantly underexposed the shot (lower ISO or higher
aperature) and easily "pushed" it without introducting a significant
amount of noise.  Fortunately, the 5D Mark IV has more dynamic
range than most, if not all Canon cameras - just not quite the amount
that Sony and Nikon offer.  Be careful with the Sprinters, should you
make an attempt - those ridiculously bright LED lights will ruin shots,
so you may have to expose for the headlights vs the scene at hand,
another instance where a little extra dynamic range comes in handy.

/Mitch



Date: 09/10/19 22:03
Re: Amtrak Acela No. 2038 at Dusk; Eddystone, PA
Author: Abqfoamer

That is an incredibly well-exposed shot, especially in the then-available light and subject movement!



Date: 09/11/19 04:38
Re: Amtrak Acela No. 2038 at Dusk; Eddystone, PA
Author: birdman

Thank you Mitch for the explanation.  I wac correct in assuming that post-processing was a key factor but I was way off in terms of ISO. Good advice re. the headlights on the Sprinters.  I have had to work around that issue more than once. I'm going to have to become more of a night owl. Your photos are wonderful.
 



Date: 09/11/19 06:21
Re: Amtrak Acela No. 2038 at Dusk; Eddystone, PA
Author: King_Coal

Fine photo. Thanks for the process comments.



Date: 09/11/19 07:17
Re: Amtrak Acela No. 2038 at Dusk; Eddystone, PA
Author: ironmtn

King_Coal Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Fine photo. Thanks for the process comments.

Second that motion! Another really terrific image, Mitch. Love the details: the headlight glint on the wire, the signal aspects visible, the glint / highlight on the red line on the nose. They all really help the image to pop. You really do capture the NEC and related electrified territories exceptionally well, and your images teach us all a lot about composition and technique, especially when shooting "under the wire". I always look forward to your images.

Thanks also for sharing the technical info especially. Some other folks who have mastered low-light action work have been asked about technique, but have not been willing to be forthcoming about their practice. Which while disappointing, is perfectly acceptable. Your willingness to do so is appreciated.

A follow-up on exposure in this image's situation, if I may. How did you set your exposure, in terms of TTL metering setting / pattern (if variable, as on some cameras), and in terms of the area of the image you had the meter read? The caveat on headlights is understood in general, and particularly in terms of the new, exceptionally bright LED lights on some locomotives. But otherwise, knowing how and where to meter in a lighting situation like this is what always trips me up, and so far my trial-and-error method to resolve the problem hasn't met success in getting the exposure I want.

I have always especially appreciated ambient-lit nighttime and dawn-dusk images, and images like this that are not of a static train in low light, but one moving at a good clip. Having the use of high ISO values in today's cameras is understood to be a big part of the equation, and you have touched on the post-processing part -- thanks again for that. But it seems to me that metering / exposure technique needs to also fit in as part of the overall solution.

Thanks in advance for any comments you may wish to offer.

MC



Date: 09/11/19 09:03
Re: Amtrak Acela No. 2038 at Dusk; Eddystone, PA
Author: Mgoldman

ironmtn Wrote:
>
> > Fine photo. Thanks for the process comments.
>
> Second that motion! Another really terrific image,
> Mitch. Love the details: the headlight glint on
> the wire, the signal aspects visible, the glint /
> highlight on the red line on the nose. They all
> really help the image to pop. You really do
> capture the NEC and related electrified
> territories exceptionally well, and your images
> teach us all a lot about composition and
> technique, especially when shooting "under the
> wire". I always look forward to your images.

Thanks much - really appreciate that!


> Thanks also for sharing the technical info
> especially. Some other folks who have mastered
> low-light action work have been asked about
> technique, but have not been willing to be
> forthcoming about their practice. Which while
> disappointing, is perfectly acceptable. Your
> willingness to do so is appreciated.

I like to look at it this way:  I've done that; on to
other challenges.  Glad I could be of service.


> A follow-up on exposure in this image's situation,
> if I may. How did you set your exposure, in terms
> of TTL metering setting / pattern (if variable, as
> on some cameras), and in terms of the area of the
> image you had the meter read? The caveat on
> headlights is understood in general, and
> particularly in terms of the new, exceptionally
> bright LED lights on some locomotives. But
> otherwise, knowing how and where to meter in a
> lighting situation like this is what always trips
> me up, and so far my trial-and-error method to
> resolve the problem hasn't met success in getting
> the exposure I want.

KISS?  Digital cameras offer something film cameras
never did - the histogram on the back display, as well
as the "blinkies", or the highlight alert which when
enabled will flash showing exactly which parts of your
photo have been overexposed to the point that there’s
no detail in those areas at all.  I just pick the speed I
need (or am willing to risk), same with the aperature,
and again, the ISO - where, when combined, offers
a histogram with no (or few) over nor under exposed
peaks and the bare minimum of "blinkies".  So - expose
for the scene, then make adjustments based on the subject,
ie; bright headlights or bright sky - under-expose, or,
crop the sky out and over-expose somewhat.  Canon,
like many other brands offers a feature I do use - the
highlight preserve / D-Lighting, ect.  That setting, on
the Canon limits the ISO to 200 and higher, but DOES
preserve what migh otherwise be blown out.  As for
metering - I usually chose a cross-hair focus point
surrounded by 4 other focus points just in case - and
follow the subject as it comes into sight.  Letting the
camera choose the focus point offers results for me
a bit to sporadic.  I use the AI focus, too.  The "faster"
the lens you use, the better it works (ie; a 2.8 lens,
for instance), but in the above example, I was shooting
with a 100-400 f/4.5 - 5.6.  Got lucky, the scene was
actually not as dark as pictured and low light focus
abilities seem to get better with each generation. 

/Mitch



Date: 09/11/19 09:06
Re: Amtrak Acela No. 2038 at Dusk; Eddystone, PA
Author: texchief1

I am not a fan of the NEC, but that is a beautiful shot!

Randy Lundgren
Elgin, TX



Date: 09/11/19 10:15
Re: Amtrak Acela No. 2038 at Dusk; Eddystone, PA
Author: DavidP

Beautiful!

Dave



Date: 09/11/19 13:03
Re: Amtrak Acela No. 2038 at Dusk; Eddystone, PA
Author: bobk

Great shot!



Date: 09/12/19 08:37
Re: Amtrak Acela No. 2038 at Dusk; Eddystone, PA
Author: bobwilcox

Nice shot.  I appreciate the comments on working the variables to get a satisfactory image. The high ISO technology is opening up a whole new world.

Bob Wilcox
Charlottesville, VA
My Flickr Shots



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/13/19 03:33 by bobwilcox.



Date: 09/13/19 09:49
Re: Amtrak Acela No. 2038 at Dusk; Eddystone, PA
Author: erielackawanna

Very well done - with the down-market 80D I'm not sure I would have even tried, but stopping the train at 1/160th is not something I would have thought possible either.



Date: 09/13/19 16:52
Re: Amtrak Acela No. 2038 at Dusk; Eddystone, PA
Author: ns1000

Great pic!!



[ Share Thread on Facebook ] [ Search ] [ Start a New Thread ] [ Back to Thread List ] [ <Newer ] [ Older> ] 
Page created in 0.1003 seconds