As I was on a holiday day trip, rather than a day out photographing trains, I didn’t have the opportunity to explore the line and look for some good vantage points. That said, railway photography in summer doesn’t always yield the best results as the warmth tends to result in a poor exhaust and so the trains look pretty static. So really it was a case of making do with what there was in terms of locations and conditions. Now as I have a passionate dislike of front three-quarter photos of trains in stations, I was forced to think about how I could do something different. How to capture the essence of a sleep rural branch line with wife and child in tow and a train to catch? A tall order, so I had to keep it simple and look for opportunities closely.
Ajax arrives at Wootton.
Entering stations is the wrong place to expect some exhaust as the engine is barely working, but this was about the only place I could photograph a moving engine. I decided to frame it with the telegraph pole and the bush, as well as getting the nice blue sky in.
Freshwater, an engine used on the Island in the 1930’s. Bit of a snapshot this one.
Calbourne – another engine used on the island in the age of steam, and a rather handsome one as well. I wanted to capture a bit more than just the engine, so I composed it to include the tank engine on the right and the station building on the left, as well as the inspection pit and wheelbarrow in the foreground. I’d have loved to take a wander round the yard, but it wasn’t an option really in the circumstances.