Old 06-01-2014, 03:41 PM   #1
Ron Flanary
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Default Why bother?....

http://www.railpictures.net/viewreje...36&key=3249132

OK---the riveted section running horizontally from the small numberboard back is dead level, but the handrails leading up to the cab are clearly not vertical. Could I use the lens correction tool to screw around with the distortion of make it "right." Perhaps, but that's ridiculous. I chose to use the horizontal feature (which, by definition, constitutes "level") rather than the handrails.

To me, this is a textbook case of why many of the best rail photographers either have stopped uploading to RP.net, or avoid it altogether. I thought this was a pretty cool image, but it gets gigged for a total b.s. reason.

Naturally, I uploaded it to Flickr, and had no problems. In fact, I'm increasingly pleased with my Flickr experience. There's no reason to deal with RP.net and experience the angst it sometimes brings.

Maybe Blair Kooistra had the right idea...
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Old 06-01-2014, 03:54 PM   #2
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Maybe they were basing the unlevelness on that vertical tank in the background. But the whole photo has a feeling to it that it's leaning to the right. My take anyway.

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Old 06-01-2014, 04:32 PM   #3
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Horizon Unlevel (Leaning Right): The horizon of the image is leaning to the right, and needs to be corrected with counterclockwise rotation. A level horizon, in most cases, should be ascertained by ensuring that an object which is known to be vertical, such as a structure, nearest to the center of the frame aligns with the grid lines in your photo editor.


Wow, can you believe that detailed rejection/explanation? Nice to see they are updated things. Maybe the wording for poor light, poor sun angle, etc is next?

Anyway, aside from the rejection reason, the whole scene is a little cluttered for me. What am I supposed to be looking at? What is the thing in the foreground left that is cut off? I feel like a bit wider would have worked better here to avoid the awkwardly cut off subjects on the left and right.
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Old 06-01-2014, 05:10 PM   #4
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...What am I supposed to be looking at?...
Three diesel-electrics. I liked it---and that's all that matters.
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Old 06-01-2014, 05:35 PM   #5
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Congrats, you started another "RP sucks" thread on FB.
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Old 06-01-2014, 05:57 PM   #6
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Wow, can you believe that detailed rejection/explanation? Nice to see they are updated things. Maybe the wording for poor light, poor sun angle, etc is next?

Anyway, aside from the rejection reason, the whole scene is a little cluttered for me. What am I supposed to be looking at? What is the thing in the foreground left that is cut off? I feel like a bit wider would have worked better here to avoid the awkwardly cut off subjects on the left and right.
Wow, that IS new!
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Old 06-01-2014, 06:09 PM   #7
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Vertical -14, horizontal -4 in correct camera distortion works for me.

I figure a good majority have no issue with it. It bugs the shit out of me. I'd fix it for any place you decide to show it off.

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Old 06-01-2014, 06:12 PM   #8
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Cool

I like the concept of the image (a variety of neat "streamliner" liveries) but for me the turntable shack and the guys in vests detract from the image. But if you crop them out you probably don't get enough of the E-5.

I also get the sense the image is "leaning" slightly and needs to be rotated a bit counter clockwise. That is probably more a "visual" level thing than a geometric level issue. I agree there would be no point in trying to do any lens correction, too many angles.

But I'm with you. No point in arguing with RP. Do what appeals to you the photographer, and if RP doesn't like it go to Flickr. Thanks for getting me onto Flickr!
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Old 06-01-2014, 07:51 PM   #9
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It appears to be very distractingly leaning right to my eyes, not sure what is going on.
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Old 06-01-2014, 09:39 PM   #10
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With all due respect, when did a bunch of leaning verticals and a coaling tower that looks like it's about to fall over become a "total bs reason?"

The reason verticals are used to determine level is because unless you're shooting exactly at a 90 degree angle to something, horizontals quickly become totally unreliable due to perspective. Verticals (discounting wide angle distortion) should remain true.

Can you imagine the result if John tried to level this shot based on a horizontal row of rivets?

Image © John Sesonske
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I often feel from your comments that you think we should overlook the very rare flaws in your work (a flaw which, in this case, could have been corrected a lot quicker than making this forum post) and accept the photo anyway because you're Ron Flanary. My question to you would be - how would this be fair to anyone else who contributes to RP?
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Old 06-01-2014, 10:03 PM   #11
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It appears to be very distractingly leaning right to my eyes, not sure what is going on.
I took a rather arcane approach and used a piece of paper lined up to the horizontal edge of the image itself, then used the vertical edge of the paper to check against the tower's orientation in three different spots.

By that measurement it is off maybe 1 or 2 degrees. Noticeable, but not by a wide margin. I have no opinion on the photo itself in terms of railfan appeal since streamliner-type engines really don't do much for me. (To each their own.)

Your mileage may vary.
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Old 06-01-2014, 10:11 PM   #12
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I took a rather arcane approach and used a piece of paper lined up to the horizontal edge of the image itself, then used the vertical edge of the paper to check against the tower's orientation in three different spots.
A much quicker (and probably more accurate) method is grabbing the browser window and dragging it over to the side of your monitor to line up a vertical.
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Old 06-01-2014, 10:20 PM   #13
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A much quicker (and probably more accurate) method is grabbing the browser window and dragging it over to the side of your monitor to line up a vertical.
I'm an old fart... let me be.

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Old 06-01-2014, 10:49 PM   #14
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...I often feel from your comments that you think we should overlook the very rare flaws in your work (a flaw which, in this case, could have been corrected a lot quicker than making this forum post) and accept the photo anyway because you're Ron Flanary. My question to you would be - how would this be fair to anyone else who contributes to RP?...
Thanks for the condescension, Chris. I never expect favors or exceptions. And, it wouldn't matter if Leonard Lipshits submitted the shot, it's irritating to any decent photographer to be rejected for a banal reason---and I think I do a decent job as a photographer. Yes, it's upsetting as hell...and I could kick myself in the butt for (1) making an issue of it, and (2) uploading this, or any other shot in the first place.

RP.net is not fun---and it should be. This is a hobby, not some kind of bizarre competition.
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Old 06-01-2014, 11:22 PM   #15
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Thanks for the condescension, Chris. I never expect favors or exceptions. And, it wouldn't matter if Leonard Lipshits submitted the shot, it's irritating to any decent photographer to be rejected for a banal reason---and I think I do a decent job as a photographer. Yes, it's upsetting as hell...and I could kick myself in the butt for (1) making an issue of it, and (2) uploading this, or any other shot in the first place.

RP.net is not fun---and it should be. This is a hobby, not some kind of bizarre competition.
I wasn't being condescending at all; I was being completely honest. The vast majority of your work is fantastic and is accepted no questions asked, and citing a rare flaw here and there was a compliment, not condescension.

I guess I don't get the angst and the "reduction in enjoyment" that stems from a horizon rejection. So many aspects of this hobby are open to interpretation or vary based on personal preference, style, etc. An image being level isn't one of them. It's actually one of the very few things that is pretty much absolute - it's either level, or it's not. And it's so easy to determine and repair. It's not as if the photo in question is off by 1/4 of a degree. I don't see how that can be construed as banal.

I would further note that the other perceived issues with this particular photo that were brought up by others in this thread were never cited as rejection reasons, so I'm not sure why they are even being discussed.

As for favors or, more appropriately, exceptions, you have openly lobbied in this forum for a so-called "pass" for certain contributors for quite some time now. I don't know what other conclusion I'm supposed to draw from that.

I'm truly sorry to hear that RP has become such a major source of exasperation for you. If you want to stop submitting, I can't stop you. If you want to join others and pull your images, there's nothing I can do to stop that either. At the end of the day, the site will go on and the world will still continue to turn.

I will say, however, that I feel we've done everything we possibly could, within reason, to try to keep you happy over the years. I have absolutely no regrets in terms of that, and I don't see how we could have done anything differently.
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Old 06-01-2014, 11:23 PM   #16
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With all due respect, when did a bunch of leaning verticals and a coaling tower that looks like it's about to fall over become a "total bs reason?"
The tower is off between 0.75 and 0.80.
Is that falling over? (I'm guessing Jim would say "yes", and Mitch would say "no")

The grab to the right of the cab door is not plumb to the actual loco, and gives the illusion of more CW lean to the photo.
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Old 06-01-2014, 11:25 PM   #17
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Nothing to see here, wish I could delete responses, please move along.
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Old 06-01-2014, 11:37 PM   #18
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I wasn't being condescending at all; I was being completely honest. The vast majority of your work is fantastic and is accepted no questions asked, and citing a rare flaw here and there was a compliment, not condescension....

I will say, however, that I feel we've done everything we possibly could, within reason, to try to keep you happy over the years. I have absolutely no regrets in terms of that, and I don't see how we could have done anything differently.
Chris, I doubt most of the folks who follow this forum don't want to keep reading what is essentially a conversation between me, you (and Chris Starnes, off line). For what it's worth, the "free pass" suggestion for "advanced" photographers (or whatever...) did come from me, but it's been voiced in many variations from a lot of contributors, and (more importantly) very good would-be contributors. But---the chances of you guys ever considering my advice or anything else is slim and none, so you'll never hear that again. Obviously, I'm a total dumb ass.

I'm not a child, and I'm not going to ask you to remove my images. After a cooling off period, I might even upload another shot one day. But most importantly, it has never been necessary to "keep me happy over the years." I would hope you treat every RP.net contributor with the respect they deserve. I've never asked for any favors or special considerations---ever.

Let's move on...this particular horse is dead.
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Old 06-01-2014, 11:54 PM   #19
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Let's move on...this particular horse is dead.
Agreed. I'm always available for a private Facebook chat if you'd like to discuss anything further.
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Old 06-02-2014, 04:12 AM   #20
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Agreed. I'm always available for a private Facebook chat if you'd like to discuss anything further.
Wait, I thought you once said that any train-related discussion on FB would result in being unfriended?
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Old 06-02-2014, 01:35 PM   #21
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RP.net is not fun---and it should be.
It's way more fun when you don't care as much as you apparently do.

You're still Ron Flanary; a respected and well known railroad photographer. You stand a shot of being recognized in person, or by your name in print. Most foamers will never have that happen to them. That being said, you're not perfect. Fix the shot

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Old 06-02-2014, 02:06 PM   #22
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Wait, I thought you once said that any train-related discussion on FB would result in being unfriended?
Well, we all know that was never true... if there's one thing Chris likes to talk about on Facebook; it's his Tehachapi layout....
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Old 06-02-2014, 02:17 PM   #23
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Well, we all know that was never true... if there's one thing Chris likes to talk about on Facebook; it's his Tehachapi layout....
Or his in-flight accomodations and dining.

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Old 06-02-2014, 04:06 PM   #24
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Chris Kilroy (and also Starnes, via e-mail) and I had an amicable discussion by Facebook message. We're friends, and we will remain friends. No...I'm not going to "fix" the shot, because I feel there's nothing wrong with it, so we'll move on. And no, I'm not going to have all my images removed from RP.net. I do believe many of my ideas to improve RP.net have considerable merit, but it's not my site, and I don't make those decisions. I do thank both Starnes and Kilroy for listening. At any rate, thanks to all for tolerating my little semi-public rant. I'm sure Jim is laughing that something that pushed me over the edge dealt with "unlevel."
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Old 06-02-2014, 04:55 PM   #25
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Chris Kilroy (and also Starnes, via e-mail) and I had an amicable discussion by Facebook message. We're friends, and we will remain friends. No...I'm not going to "fix" the shot, because I feel there's nothing wrong with it, so we'll move on. And no, I'm not going to have all my images removed from RP.net. I do believe many of my ideas to improve RP.net have considerable merit, but it's not my site, and I don't make those decisions. I do thank both Starnes and Kilroy for listening. At any rate, thanks to all for tolerating my little semi-public rant. I'm sure Jim is laughing that something that pushed me over the edge dealt with "unlevel."
Life is full of these little speedbumps. So far, the urge to slit my wrists after having someone tell me my photos suck, or call me a pretentious prick, has been manageable.

At the same time, life is also full of those moments when it all just works out in our favor. Guess it's how the guy upstairs keeps us on our toes.
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