Stephen Rees's blog

Thoughts about the relationships between transport and the urban area it serves

Posts Tagged ‘photo challenge

WPC: It IS Easy Being Green

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via Photo Challenge: It IS Easy Being Green!

Parque Josone, Varadero
Parque Josone in Varadero, Cuba where even the water in the boating lake is green.


Written by Stephen Rees

March 22, 2017 at 10:32 am

Atop the clouds

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via Photo Challenge: Atop

Atop the clouds

Heading home from Varadero it was already dark by the time we left the airport, but once we got atop the clouds there was still some afterglow from the sunset. And since the view here is westwards perhaps someone can help with the identification of that star.

Written by Stephen Rees

March 15, 2017 at 1:04 pm

WPC: A Good Match

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via Photo Challenge: A Good Match

As soon as I saw the title of the photo challenge I knew what the photo would be

Us in the Musee Carnavalet

Taken in the garden of the Musee Carnavalet in Paris on May 21, 2012 by my sister Rosemary and hitherto only available to friends and family but made public for the first time.

A Good Match indeed. We have now been together for over seven years – and it just keeps getting better.

Written by Stephen Rees

February 22, 2017 at 10:31 am

WPC: Shadow

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via Photo Challenge: Shadow


I forgot that the Weekly Photo Challenge had been moved from Friday to Wednesday – but apparently it is “open all week” so here is my contribution.

The location is one of the former railway trestles across the Myra Canyon near Kelowna BC. After the tracks were removed the right of way became a long distance walking/cycling trail. The picture was taken around midday so the length of the shadow is not produced by early or late sunshine but the height of the trestle. It is indeed a long way down.

They have their own blog too

Looking through some of the other submissions, I noticed that other people post more than one picture, and my flickr stream has more than one candidate.

The first is more recent, from last year in Chicago


tram shadow

This one is from 2012: the Roosevelt Island Tram in New York City – and the one below is the same year but closer to home



Written by Stephen Rees

February 10, 2017 at 11:34 am

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WPC: Solitude

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via Photo Challenge: Solitude


There are quite a few photos like this on my Flickr stream. Unlike crows or starlings, the Great Blue Heron prefer solitude – at least when (s)he is going fishing.

I started taking pictures of these birds when I heard about the Citizen Science project.

By the way, I notice that – as usual – my picture breaks the “rule of thirds” for composition. That is because of the way that autofocus used to work on my previous cameras. This is taken with an iPhone, but I seem to to have broken the habit of centering the subject – which in this case seems to have nicely separated the bird from the background. But there is no bokeh as this was taken midday on a sunny day in August.

By the way: this post is in response to the Weekly Photo Challenge. You will note that there is also a link at the very top of the post which gets automatically inserted by WordPress when you use the button on the challenge page. But the pingback there is malformatted – as if you click on it, you go to a different page than the one where the challenge is posted. If you are doing photo challenges as a way to see how others respond that link is useless. Also note that it does not tell you – as the correct pingback does – that the weekly challenge is being moved to Wednesdays!

Written by Stephen Rees

February 3, 2017 at 10:40 am

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WPC: Ambience

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img_3933via Photo Challenge: Ambience

I asked my partner if she could think of one of my photos that had “ambience”. I used my best French accent on that word which must have influenced her choice. This is the interior of the Palais du Louvre in Paris. This is part of Louis Napoleon’s apartment – his personal quarters – decorated at enormous expense to the state, and defining the taste of the Second Empire.

I think it’s ghastly.

Written by Stephen Rees

January 13, 2017 at 10:56 am

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WPC Names: Pullman

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via Photo Challenge: Names

NRM York: Pullman 5669

Pullman is a brand name that once exercised considerable power. In the application used in the photo it was used by Britain’s nationalised railway to indicate the highest standard of luxury. Trains carrying this brand had better quality seating, more space per passenger and at seat service for refreshments and full meals, with high quality china and silverware. The now privatised railway companies tend not to emulate this type of service, and stress their own brand names. There are also many companies across the world that now operate trains that are equivalent to cruise ships, not really so much about transportation as providing a luxury experience for a very limited high end market. In Britain, Pullman trains ran on regular schedules and charged a premium fare but were still affordable. For instance, even a student I was able to take the Bristol Pullman from London to go visit friends we had met on holiday. I can still remember the huge toasted tea cakes served warm by friendly waiters.

Pullman started in the United States in the early days or railways which initially were known for their spartan accommodations, even for very long distance trips.  Initially Pullman cars were added to existing trains – and this method was also continued by British Railways – although they were not in the Sleeping Car business there. Indeed in Europe that became the speciality of CIWL –  who operated trains like the Orient Express.

In Britain it was also possible to find the Pullman car by its livery – dark chocolate and cream. This changed with the introduction of the Blue Pullmans, which marked a distinct change in style and design. Traditionally blue was not favoured for most railway applications as it was a colour known to fade readily, but improved paint technology meant that the colour could be used economically, and as an indication of modernity and difference from past practice. There were also blue locomotives and passenger trains for electrification schemes, and blue was then adopted for all BR trains when the brands BritishRail and InterCity were adopted as part of the modernisation scheme.

After these trains were withdrawn in the early 1970s, BR stopped using Pullman as a brand altogether.

Original challenge

Written by Stephen Rees

January 6, 2017 at 12:41 pm

Posted in photography, Transportation

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