Monday, May 28, 2018

Making Lemonade

You know the old saying, "when life gives you lemons, make lemonade?" Sometimes as railfans or as photographers in general, we appear to have limited options on what to photograph. Maybe you live in an area where there's only one train a day. Maybe you can't travel to "interesting" places and must make do with what is in walking distance. Maybe, like me, you find yourself by a train yard with only one locomotive in it. What do you do?

Make lemonade!

I had about an hour to spend at CP's main Winnipeg yard this past Saturday afternoon. I arrived at the east end of the yard at 1:15 PM and I saw this scene.
Obvious 3/4 wedgie
Newly rebuilt unit CP 8143 was on one end of an oil train. There were a few grain cars behind it, no
other locomotives in view, and nothing moving. snore

I decided to take that as a challenge and I sought to find more photographs than the obvious ones I took above and below.
Obvious side roster shot
I walked around a bit - staying by the roadside, no trespassing! - and I found this angle with a track panel lining up the locomotive.
Thinking outside the (cardboard) box
Not bad... it would have been better without that cardboard box, but I couldn't go move it without trespassing.

It's always good to include a "sense of place" in your photographs. I found this angle with the Winnipeg Cold Storage building in the background.
Winnipeg Cold Storage
No doubt about where that photo was taken!

Zooming in to focus on details never hurts...
The new Golden Beaver
You saw the Winnipeg Jets flag and the locomotive as the lead photo in this post. I have a Jets flag on my car, and I used it with the locomotive to make a statement.

Don't be afraid to use props!

I saw a few opportunities with the freight cars behind CP 8143... starting with the buffer car itself, BNSF 808686.
So you're saying we shouldn't try to load grain into this car any more?

A few cars down, I saw a Canadian Wheat Board logo between two tank cars.
Would be better without the graffiti
Speaking of tank cars...
UTLX 675953 - The Tank Car People
I spotted the old Robbs Glass building and wanted to include it in a photo. While I was walking there, a CP switcher came rumbling out of the yard in a cloud of smoke.

The switcher pulled ahead, then a belt-pack-wearing worker walked back to uncouple battered MP 652005 from a tank car. That was my signal that it was time to move on.

I hope you've enjoyed this little batch of lemonade, and you can take some inspiration for turning your own photographic lemons into lemonade.

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