Karen Botvin  

Iron Railroad Bridge by Karen Botvin

September 2021 - Iron Railroad Bridge

September 2021 - Karen Botvin


About the Image(s)

This bridge was shot in NE Tennessee as a part of my Bridges and Back Roads workshop. I was standing on a road bridge across from this bridge and shot it with my Nikon D850 using the 24-120mm lens at 62mm, ISO 800, f/5.6 at 1/500 second. I increased the whites, decreased the blacks and adjusted the exposure a bit. I also tweaked the horizontal perspective just a bit in LR. In Photoshop, I replaced the sky, expanded it a bit and lightened it until I felt like the clouds were off in a distance. If you look closely in the center section of the sky, there is a barn swallow flying through the image. There were a few circling around while we were shooting. I love the reflections in the water, the mist off in the distance and the tree branch that frames the right side. Your comments are very welcome as I do more landscapes.

8 comments posted

Piers Blackett   Piers Blackett
Great image. You have a compounding effect of strong compositional elements. The line of the bridge leads to the mountains in the distance, so I would crop in an inch or so from the right so the eye can begin closer to the leading line of the train track. The bridge appears to be going slightly up hill from left to right - so wondered if you used the leveling tool in the crop.   Posted: 09/03/2021 22:50:20
Karen Botvin   Karen Botvin
Thank you, Piers, for your comments. I have a pretty good eye for leveling so I rarely use the Auto tool, however after both you and Martin commented on it, I went back and applied it. Wow, I was surprised at how much of a difference it was off. I think when something it captured on a diagonal it's tricky to know exactly which area to level. Lesson learned, always at least try the Auto Leveling tool.   Posted: 09/07/2021 13:06:42

Shirley Pohlman   Shirley Pohlman
Karen, I really like the composition of this shot, and I feel your cropping brought that bridge within reach of the viewer. I like your sky replacement that gives a nice contrast to the bridge and mountain in the background. Beautiful.   Posted: 09/04/2021 14:40:06
Karen Botvin   Karen Botvin
Thanks so much, Shirley. I'm glad you like it.   Posted: 09/07/2021 13:07:16

Martin Newland   Martin Newland
I love Pratt Truss bridges and this one has really character. The rust and the flaking paint adds to the image.
I agree with Piers that the bridge and the distant river edge seem to be running uphill to the right hand side of the image.
If you move the shadows slider in Lightroom to the right it might reveal a little more detail in the horizontal bridge beam.
Also, I feel there is a slight brown cast in the sky. This is might be fixed by running it through "Auto Tone" in Photoshop.
I like the composition and the reflection. A great image.   Posted: 09/04/2021 19:23:07
Karen Botvin   Karen Botvin
Thanks, Martin for the suggestions of working more with the shadows slider. I was able to bring out more details in the rust and wood of the tracks. As for the brown cast, I don't see it, but I did run it through Auto Tone in Photoshop. It changed ever so slightly. Good eye!   Posted: 09/07/2021 13:10:08

Jaqueline Whalen   Jaqueline Whalen
This is just lovely! The reflection really captures your attention and the tones of the bridge make it pop right out at you. The addition of the clouds certainly improve the image as the original is quite flat. You have done a great job in manipulating the original to make a lovely image.   Posted: 09/07/2021 07:49:45

Karen Botvin   Karen Botvin
Thanks so much for your kind words, Jaqueline! I'm glad you like it.   Posted: 09/07/2021 13:11:02


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