Category: Opinion

Compelling Video Imagery

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what constitutes compelling video imagery and how that could be applied to model railroading. Videos/trailers/movies can serve a myriad of purposes from telling a story, evoking a mood, making a socially relevant point, documentation, or instruction. With model railroading or railfanning, the overwhelming majority of imagery falls into…


Layouts as Wall Art

As you walk through your living room, chances are that somewhere on the wall hangs something you enjoy looking at. It could be a painting, poster, sculpture, or photograph or even one of the mounting photos for display you recently purchased. Whatever it is, you liked it when you bought it, you liked it a…


Communicating the Emotion of Timelessness

  I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to articulate, either in writing or photographically, why I’m so drawn to  Allapattah (Miami), Hialeah (Miami) or Vernon (LA).  Time never seemed to move on in these places, seemingly locked permanently in the forties and fifties. Walking down 22nd Street in Miami or 48th Street in Vernon…


Threading the Eye of the Needle

In his must-read piece, “11 Lessons Learned” in the April issue of MR, Tony Koester writes “One huge lesson gleaned from even a cursory review of the V&O was to model the ordinary.  It’s all too easy to compile a list of eye-catching prototypes to model, and the inevitable result is that everything competes to…


Scene Composition

  Scene composition, more than any other factor, telegraphs to the eye whether our work is believable or not.  It matters more than detail, more than construction neatness, and more than prototypical accuracy.  For our purposes, I’ll define scene composition as the elements we choose to incorporate, their size, shape, relative position, and spacing.  Since…