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Edition #1, March 1, 2005

Richard Avedon and the 3751

Photographer: Steve Crise

                                                                                                      Photo © 2005 by Steve Crise

Richard Avedon and the 3751

Creativity and inspiration are strange bedfellows; you never know where they’re going to come from, or where they’re going to take you.

In the case of this photograph, inspiration for this image sprang forth from two very different sources.

The first source being one that most railfans may be familiar with, It's the yearly event knows as Day in North America. For those not familiar with this event, I guess the best way to describe it would be to characterize it as a railroad imaging-making contest that takes place in a single 24-hour period. This year the date of October 18th was set aside for the event. The idea that drives the event is that railroad photographers from all over North America go out and shoot images relating to railroad subject matter on that given day.  Images are then submitted for possible publication in a future issue of CTC Board that will feature a selection of the best images produced on that day.

The second source of inspiration may be less familiar to readers of railfan chatter. The second component of this idea came from a shot I'd seen years ago of a photograph that Richard Avedon had done. At the time of last years DINA event, only 17 days had passed since the death of Avedon on Oct 1, so reviews and retrospectives of his life accomplishments as a leading image-maker were being talked about and planned. I somehow thought it would be a nice tribute in my own small way to emulate his style in the pages of CTC Board in memory of his passing. Unfortunately, the guys at CTC didn't think the image made the grade so it was not published in the DINA issue.

As a photographer, and especially as a railroad photographer, my personal goal is to push the limits of my own creative ability as far as I can with each effort. As a result, I don't always produce images that fit the standard protocol of railfan photography, and therefore they don't and won't get published at this point in time.

Sadly, I can't help but think how many other "outside the box" railroad images are passed up each month for the sake of remaining loyal to one standard type of railroad photographic style firmly embraced by the fan mags, that being the holy grail of the ¾ wedge shot.

Steve Crise    Steve Crise Photoproduction

February 2005


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