Old 07-19-2005, 06:07 PM   #1
Wade H. Massie
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Default Horizon Unlevel

On some of my photos I've had a tough time figuring out which way to rotate the image for the horizon to be perfectly level. I think I've found an easy way to do this - the crop tool. If an image is just a little off center, I'll take the crop tool and make a tight crop just below the lead locomotive's pilot, and just above the cab. I then look at the pilot to see if it's parallel to the bottom of the crop. If it's not parallel, I undo the crop and rotate the image accordingly. After rotating, I'll do one more tight crop to make sure it's level. This method seems to work well in most situations, but won't be much good for trains on superelevated curves.

-Wade
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Old 07-20-2005, 02:26 AM   #2
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I use the same method but usually I use a power pole, building side, signal or other feature that you would expect to be perfectly vertical; especially helpful if the train is in a curve or otherwise has some 'natural tilt.'
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Old 07-20-2005, 05:50 AM   #3
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The concept of setting a straight horizon by finding a straight vertical line was a bit of a grasp for me, at one time. Now I just find a straight line, nose of the engine or such and make it straight, or as best I can. I am always amazed at how much better a photograph looks that is straight. There is something about it that the eyes and mind agree on and it make for a much more pleasing presentation as well.

Under a .5 degree and I don't worry to much . . . but more than that causes problems in the viewing, IMO.
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Old 07-20-2005, 01:26 PM   #4
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Just hit the window's "Restore Down" button and drag the image to the edge or bottm of you monitor to do a quick check.

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Old 07-21-2005, 07:19 PM   #5
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Use a wide angle lens..... and go crazy trying to figure out if the horizon is level at all. Can't use poles most times. Sometimes I like to submitt a lot of wide angle shots just to make the screeners go crazy... LOL.


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Old 07-21-2005, 10:27 PM   #6
Wade H. Massie
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Joe has a good point about the poles, here's an example of a shot where the poles are NOT a good reference point:
http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=98764

-Wade
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