After a summer of running around on fires I was fortunate to spend a day photographing on an old train that connects two little towns here in Northern California. It's not a real commuter train, more of a tourist attraction. Nonetheless, it was one of the most relaxing days I've spent all summer and much needed.
During the trip, I had the opportunity to borrow work from some of the photographers I look up to most. The red-hatted conductor immediately reminded me of a photo made by Craig Fritz from a project he shot on the rail yards in Albuquerque. When he made that shot and showed it around (his is of a conductor standing between two trains with a sliver of noon-day light falling directly on him, and it is amazing) I admit I didn't get it right away. But I stored the information away, and as soon as I saw the noon-day light hitting this young man, I knew it was a good thing I had paid attention. I didn't really come close to making as nice a frame as Craig, but it was nice to relive that moment back in Albuquerque and understand the learning curve I've been on.
And the second shot, this one of the hand, is thanks to Greg Kahn. Again, my shot is nothing compared to his, but it was fun to make it and remember Greg's work. His shot is from NASCAR. All it is is hands gripping a fence (people waiting to get a glimpse, I think, of their favorite drivers) and then all of a sudden, one of those gripped hands breaks free and points towards something in the distance. It's beautiful. And I'm glad I paid attention when I saw it.
Here's to being influenced and inspired by great photographers.
Sep 19, 2008
Posted by Jakob Schiller at 9:38 AM