Doesn’t matter how many times you visit the same site you are surprised by the different results you get.
Jacques le Roux
My blog to share my experiences as I learn and experiment with photography.
As Halloween will be here shortly we went hunting for the elusive ghost train.
A bit of long exposure light play at the trains station at South Queensferry. It’s a learning curve and we went out experimenting on Friday night.
So we stood at the end of platform 2 facing the Forth rail bridge and as trains went past tried to get the light trails working. After a struggle we eventually got some good shots.
Then it was onto trying to shoot the end of the train as it’s stationary and moving away. The only problem with this is the delay between trains arriving at the platforms. 15-20min wait and then a single photo. I have eventually decided to get my 2nd (my back up camera, I replaced the Canon 1D MKIII with another 7D) Canon 7D involved to increase the possibilities of some good shots. I had to use a camera backpack as a make shift tripod but will invest in another tripod for the future, I might even need another lens as the wide angle is a bit to short at times.
Here’s the results of us facing the Forth railway bridge:
And then moving to the back of each train working out how long to start the exposure before the train moves away to get
the illusion of transparency while having enough detail to see that it is a train.
Thanks you for having a look
Jacques le Roux
Looking out of the window at the winter darkness and seeing a few stars I decided on the spur of the moment to take my new Canon 10-22mm EF-S F/3.5-4.5 Ultra wide angle lens for test drive. Once I was outside even though I could see some stars I saw the rain falling pretty hard but I was already ready to leave so continued on my test shoot.
I expected sunrise to be at 0815 but in actual fact it was at 0840. I arrived at South Queensferry just after 0800 and drove towards the foot of the railway bridge. I stopped halfway and saw the harbour sitting between the two bridges and decided it looked like the perfect spot. Let me just make it clear these photos don’t for one second give you a idea how bad the weather was this morning. I ended spending a good 2 hours in rain and wind chill. The car said 2’C but it must have been -10’C in the wind and all for the love of art, lol. I lost feeling in my hands 3 times and in the 2 hours it went in cycles of rain, clear skies, wind and then rain and wind and no feelings in the hands, gloves on, gloves off, blowing hot air, getting on with the photos and then all over again. I’m happy to show it was worth it all in the end.
Now the lens. The EF-S F/3.5-4.5 Ultra wide angle lens was what I decided to get for my Canon 7D. I was tempted to go for the Sigma but in the end decided to stick with Canon glass. I’m impressed with the photos in daylight but I need to play with it more in low light as I’m not sure the image quality is as good as the L lenses I have. I know L glass can’t be used as a comparison but there are just no decent wide angle lens options for the 7D). I’m going to get rid of the Canon 1D MKIII and get another 7D as a backup so I needed to get the right long term lens.
I have one photo in my mind I want to go take with this lens in the dead of night. There is a old building in a field next to trees which is just asking for a night photo to be taken and this lens for purchased for that reason.
TIP: One tip I found and it was a bit of slapping the forehead moment is to get your focus sorted out and then write the lens setting down (I use ColorNote app on my phone). I roughly know where the focus is on the lenses I use but I’m not that good at working it out using the diagrams and have wasted many a minute (long exposures) not having it in perfect focus. I used live view in the past but it’s such a pain when jumping off it to reset the aperture and shutter speed. Wouldn’t it be cool if you could setup a few profiles that you can access instantly by for example pressing the Q or picture style button for 2 seconds you get selection of 5 profiles to choose from to give you your preferred aperture, shutter speed and ISO settings. Profiles can even be named: long exposure, sport, macro, portrait, etc.
Anyway enough waffling, I hope you like my 1st attempt at using a wide angle lens.
The ones I like the most:
Here’s the start of the other photos in order they were taken.
Photographs by Jacques …
As the sunrise is getting later as we get closer to winter I decided to take my new Hoya ND400 filter to do some long exposure photos at sunrise. I didn’t really work out that way in the end but I’m happy with results. As this trip was used more for a recce next time I’ll be sure better prepared. I didn’t use the filter till after I finished the sunrise photos due to the one issue I didn’t take into consideration. As I was standing on a road bridge the areas between the legs were moving up and down as trucks were driving passed, this affected the 1st place I stood, I moved to stand above the one pillar and that sorted it out.
I used my Canon 1D MkIII as I feel it gives me better low light results than my 7D. Personal choice more than anything else. I used my Canon 24-105mm L IS USM lens for all the photos. With speed ranging from 1/5th of a second to 20 second. I hope you like the results.
Learnt a few things yesterday. You can see through the filter to set the photo but you can use autofocus very well. I think I might be looking into drop-in filters as the Hoya ND400 doesn’t allow me the exposure over 20second in daylight. As Scotland is cloudy a lot of the time I will still have use for this filter. Remote trigger and tripod is a must or using a 2 second delay before the photo gets taken.
I started out standing on the Forth road bridge at the Northern side.
The mist rolled in while the sunrise was starting. The mist totally covered the train bridge within 30min. You can see the 1st of the three and the tops of the other two sections are already covered in mist.
Love the way this photo came out.
The road bridge totally covered in mist as well as the majority of the upright section closest to me.
I moved to the yacht/boat club at South Queensferry next.
You can see the south side of the road bridge on the right in the mist.I use the Hoya ND400 filter for this photo.I just liked the look of these photo photos, don’t know if I got what I had in mind with the second photo.
I moved to my last location and that was under the south side of train bridge.
Photographs by Jacques …
PS: I found out that if you leave you car at the wrong place you might be visited by a concerned police officer. As I left my car parked out of the way but at a unusual parking place they thought I might be a jumper (I was standing on the Forth road bridge taking the photos). Lesson learnt, he let me know where to park in the future.
Basic life skills for us all.
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