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Messages - Matthew Malkiewicz

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1
Work and Events / Photos - WW&F photo charter January 16/17
« on: February 11, 2021, 02:45:09 PM »
Follow the link below to a selection of my images captured last month at the WW&F Railway Museum in Maine during the Lerro Photography charter. Experimenting with a different technique of photo taking, I attempted to create with a more carefree and playful feeling. Recently I have been curiously studying the work of Japanese photographer Daido Moriyama; his distinct style was loosely mimicked in my approach to the event. Ignoring our western society’s photographic quote unquote ‘rules’; in some cases opting for sloppy composition, unprecise exposure, dark overtones, lack of clarity, purposely missing the decisive moment. Non-beautiful photos. The desire to accept imperfection. Prime examples are frames #3, 5, 8, 19, and especially 30. I feel the unfavorable weather played into my hand, hopefully the mystical draw I was trying to achieve conveys to the viewer. This is not a new direction I’m taking, rather a brief exploration outside the comfort zone. Let me know your opinion.

https://www.losttracksoftime.com/p47324941

The last photo is not from Maine, but rather near home a week later. The lantern was purchased during the trip, my first blue globed light.

Enjoy,
Matthew

2
Work and Events / Thank you - WW&F photo charter January 16/17
« on: January 20, 2021, 05:29:09 AM »
On January 16/17, I attended the photo charter at the WW&F. I would like to thank everyone, both on the frontline and behind the scenes, who labored to make this a very smooth and successful event. The WW&F is first class, the scenes created were so timeless and accurate. Although the time was brief, it was great seeing you all.

Stay safe and well,
Matthew Malkiewicz

3
Other Narrow Gauge / Re: EBT is SOLD! New non-profit to open RR in 2021
« on: February 25, 2020, 06:31:09 AM »
The last time I saw the East Broad Top under steam was October 29th, 2011, during a freak pre-winter blizzard fondly referred to as Snowtober. Two months later, the tourist excursion season ended, and the East Broad Top Railroad and Coal Company suspended operations indefinitely. The railroad has been dormant since, their doors locked.

Fast forward to Friday, February 14th, 2020. On this day the EBT announced that the Kovalchick family had agreed to sell the railroad in its entirety to the non-profit EBT Foundation, Inc. a newly formed group of prominent railroad industry figures, philanthropists, and longtime EBT enthusiasts. I was there representing the Friends of the EBT in the role of event photographer, recording the day’s events with both candid and posed images.

But my day started much earlier than the 11am proceedings at the train station; I arrived at 1am. Since the 2011 closure, I have been routinely visiting the towns of Orbisonia, Mount Union, Robertsdale, and all points of interest in between. Regardless of season, weather conditions, or time of day, it has been my mission to photograph and document the facilities as they exist present day. But the rails have always been void of the trains. What has been missing is now back. Four locomotives out on display, a pair of the premium passenger cars, a tank and boxcars, and those iconic cabooses!

There were smiles everywhere you looked. So many emotions in everyone’s eyes. I’ve been to many railfan events, this was the best one in a long time. Such an awesome experience, I’m so happy to have been a part of it. I had the great pleasure to talk with Joe Kovalchick and EBT historian Lee Rainey for 10 minutes each, both were choked up and fumbling their words. It might have been a frigid morning, but it all felt like a family reunion and outdoor party. Godspeed EBT!

I have always been waiting for the clock hands to run backwards – as narrow gauged smoke billowing trains once again traverse the Pennsylvania countryside pulling passenger laden cars. The dream has come true. I will continue my quest at the land that time has ignored. Everything there has a story; with each return visit my cameras are listening. It lures me back; I’m continuing the adventure real soon.

Follow the link below to my gallery of photographs, which starts with an image from October of 2011. The black/white absolutely timeless photos were captured between 1 and 6am, and then the scenes from the announcement event are in color.

http://www.losttracksoftime.com/p47324941

Enjoy,
Matthew

4
Thank you Mike!
 
I had a typo in my original text, which I have corrected. This is formally the Grand Trunk, and not Grand Trunk Western. The GTW was Port Huron to Chicago, whereas the GT operated in Maine.
 
I would assume there has not been any maintenance or care to the structure since the fire in 1984, yet the wood, especially where it is immersed twice a day in sea water, is in relatively good shape.
 
Looking at my photos, it appears only the southern approach was on fire, and not the draw span or northern section. Don’t know how yet, but I would like to get a lot closer with a boat to capture some additional images.
 
Matthew

5
I first experienced the Maine 2-footers in August of 2008 with a visit to the WW&F Railway at Alna. Since then I’ve ventured back numerous times, with another planned in the near future. Every time driving north on Rt.295 I take notice of the abandoned Grand Trunk standard gauge swing bridge spanning the Back Cove in Portland. I always wanted to explore it but never did. The weekend before Christmas I was in Portland for the Maine Narrow Gauge Museum’s Polar Express train excursions; with some down time one afternoon I finally made it there.
 
The steel swing bridge and its wooden trestle were constructed to cross over the Portland peninsula, built in 1848 by the Atlantic & St. Lawrence Railroad. Tall masted ships needed to enter the Back Cove, so the bridge was designed to swing open about a center pivot to keep both train and water traffic moving. Quite the balancing act. Active for more than 100 years, in 1984 an arsonist lit the bridge on fire and caused damage beyond repair. It was permanently set in the open position and has been dead in the water since. The Maine Narrow Gauge currently operates on the old right-of-way leading to the bridge from the south around the Eastern Prom, but stops where land meets water.
 
The conditions presented my way were perfect; low tide, diffused afternoon sunlight, hardly any wind, and an unusually warm air temperature for December. I spent a few hours there, milling around seeking out composition.
 
Imagine the variety of classic trains that crossed this bridge, and the sailing ships which passed by.
 
Follow the link below to my gallery of images from the day.

https://www.losttracksoftime.com/p56944667
 
Enjoy,
Matthew

6
The first week of November I ventured to Wales UK to participate in a series of photo charters, my first exposure to international steam operations.

We toured for 8 days, visiting four narrow gauge railways: the Rheilffordd FFestiniog, Welsh Highland, Rheilffordd Talyllyn, and Vale of Rheidol. The weather was varied, from cloudless sunny day to dark overcast with wind and rain – temperatures between the 30s and 50s Fahrenheit. Yes it does rain a lot there, the reason for the lush endless fields of green. Our travels luckily timed the autumn colors quite nicely.

Two elements that quickly intrigued me was the scenery and the people interacting with the machines, both I focused on with my cameras.

For me these photos are merely a reminder of my experiences, the locations and scenes, and most importantly the new friends made.

A special thank you goes out to Bob Branch, coordinator and leader of these excursions.

Follow the link below to my gallery of images.

https://www.losttracksoftime.com/p574679325

Enjoy,
Matthew

7
Museum Discussion / Re: Interview with Matthew Malkiewicz
« on: July 06, 2018, 08:41:40 AM »
Ed,
 
Thank you for posting the link to my interview here!
Yes I do credit the WW&F as a major form of inspiration.
I always say that I travel the country photographing steam railroads, museums, and historical locations; the WW&F is the only organization I am a life member of. And rightly so!
I thank everyone associated with the museum for what you do.
 
Matthew

8
General Discussion / Re: Pere Marquette #1225 in the snow (photos)
« on: January 25, 2018, 08:58:36 AM »
Bob,
 
For me it’s a constant adjustment, going from a big mainline steam locomotive like #1225 to a 2-foot gauge Forney, and vice versa. But it’s a very nice problem to have!
 
Matthew

9
General Discussion / Pere Marquette #1225 in the snow (photos)
« on: January 24, 2018, 07:32:59 PM »
http://www.losttracksoftime.com/p47324941

The weekend before Christmas found me in central Michigan for the final ‘North Pole Express’ excursions of the season.  Follow the link above to my photos.

These trains of 900+ patrons per run were sold out months in advance; instead of highlighting the joyous families dressed in pajamas headed to the North Pole (Ashley, MI) - I chose to concentrate on simple compositions featuring the locomotive and the winter elements it’s subjected to.

Notice the difference a day and a small detail make. For Sunday the illuminated ‘1225’ number boards were added above the headlight.

There is a Tim Horton’s very close to Steam Railroading Institute in Owosso; they serve a really fine cup of hot cocoa…

Enjoy,
Matthew

10
Museum Discussion / Re: WW&F Wins Grand Prize photo contest
« on: December 19, 2017, 07:15:00 AM »
Thank you everyone!

Full credit must go out to Stephen Piwowarski for letting me know about the photo contest back in October, and to Joe and Bob for collaborating to set up this scene. It captures the charm and essence of 2-foot railroading in Maine, the winter sleet adds great atmosphere.
 
I hope the WW&F can piggyback off of this to have an entire article with accompanying photos published in a future issue of Downeast Magazine; would be great publicity for the Museum.
 
A very Merry Christmas to all…
Matthew

11
Other Narrow Gauge / East Broad Top "The Current Chapter"
« on: May 19, 2017, 08:29:47 AM »
http://thetracksidephotographer.com/2017/05/18/inside-the-ebt/

Follow the link above to my just-released photo essay about the East Broad Top RR.
I'm sometimes asked what my photographic personal project is, until now its been under wraps. But now not anymore...

I welcome comments, corrections, or feedback.

Enjoy,
Matthew


12
from Mike Massee:

Here is my video from the WW&F shoot back in January, to go with the earlier pictures.   About 30 minutes of HD two-footer goodness.  The flying cut-off at Alna center is re-created in the same place they used to do it.    Trains would start out of Wiscasset Northbound with the helper, climb up to Alna and then cut off.  They gave us a picture-perfect re-creation of it right on cue.
 
https://youtu.be/qjVfpkZ0DW4

Cheers,
 
-Mike
 
www.mikemassee.com – Photography, Model Engineering and more…

13
The Sandy River & Rangeley Lakes Railroad (SR&RL) was a narrow gauge railroad that negotiated approximately 112 miles of track in Maine between the years of 1908 to 1935. This railroad was the longest of the five two-foot railways that once serviced the state. A scrap metal firm purchased the railroad at auction in May and operations ended July 2, 1935. The remaining rails were lifted in 1936. The SR&RL continues to run in the present day on a revived short segment of the original railway in Phillips. Last season the railroad was pleased to announce the return of steam to Phillips; Monson #3 served as the primary steam locomotive power.

On January 16th I ventured to Phillips for a day trip of exploring and photography, the link to my photographs is below.

Stripping away color enhances the patterns, textures, shapes, tones, geometry, and shadows in these images – which helps to highlight the minimalism created by the snow covered tracks, and the mystery that something is left to be grasped and understood. Negative intrigue draws the viewer in; even though the compositions feature the hidden right-of-way. The mind's eye is forced to fill in the rest of the story...

http://www.losttracksoftime.com/p298349531

Enjoy,
Matthew

14
Work and Events / Re: Maine Two-Foot Winter Steam Events 2017 (photos)
« on: March 01, 2017, 10:57:30 AM »
Thank you Stewart,

This latest collection of photos is a stark contrast to my recent collaboration with the WW&F’s Stephen Piwowarski titled “Returned to Reality”, which highlighted the rebuild of the railroad and featured a set of images void of trains and human existence.

http://thetracksidephotographer.com/2017/01/19/returned-to-reality/

Stephen:

A huge thank you once again to Eric and Greg; please forward my photos to them both and mention I look forward to working alongside your team again soon.

Matthew

15
Work and Events / Maine Two-Foot Winter Steam Events 2017 (photos)
« on: March 01, 2017, 06:19:11 AM »
In partnership with the Maine Narrow Gauge Railroad Company and Boothbay Railway Village, the Wiscasset Waterville and Farmington Railway Museum hosted a pair of Maine Two-Footer Winter Steam Events, designed to provide unique photographic opportunities of winter operations typical a hundred years ago. Two different dates were held, January 14-15 and January 21-22, 2017. In addition to WW&F Rwy #9, Monson #3 was on the railroad and operated courtesy of the Maine Narrow Gauge Railroad Company. Bridgton and Saco River coach #11 was also at the event courtesy of Boothbay Railway Village. The WW&F Rwy’s new turntable at Sheepscot was in operation allowing for photographic opportunities not possible on the railroad before. World-class lighting for the night shoot scenes was provided by museum volunteer Stephen Hussar and his staff.

I attended both weekends, with my primary focus being both the men who operate the equipment and the collection of operating oil lanterns at the museum. I incorporated both into my photographic compositions, striving to have the human element at the forefront of my images.

Worth noting is photo #33 – motorman Stewart Rhine with Railcar #4, a replica of SR&RL track crew car #2.
This image was captured with my 1951 Kodak Brownie Hawkeye vintage film camera.

Follow the link below to my gallery:

http://www.losttracksoftime.com/p47324941

Enjoy,
Matthew

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