Saturday, January 30, 2021

Gray smoke on a gray day

 I don't know how or why the guy running the M/V Mae Etta Hines revved his engines and blew this smoke ...

... but it made an interesting picture.

Wednesday, January 27, 2021

Monday, January 25, 2021

M/V Mae Etta Hines, the sequel

 As yesterday's post on the M/V Mae Etta Hines was going live, my youngest and I were getting photos of the boat on its return trip down the Ohio.

It helped make a blah weekend better.

Sunday, January 24, 2021

M/V Mae Etta Hines

As noted previously, the Mae Etta Hines was in the area Friday. I was able to grab a few photos before I had to start my day job. Here are a few.

I caught the boat on the Ohio side between Crown City and Miller right at sunrise there. I chose the Ohio side because I knew there would be no available shooing spots on the West Virginia side. All else being equal, I would have preferred to be in West Virginia so the sun could be at my back. Shooting into the sun is rarely fun. Thus the play between light and shadow in these first images. I processed three similar photos in three different ways for the different looks.

With the sun up, the boat approached the bend below Crown City,

This one was cropped from a cell phone image. The original didn't have good resolution, so don't look for detail by zooming in. It does provide a decent view of the boat in its natural habitat, however.

I thought I would try the sunrise image in black and white. It didn't work that well, but at least I tried.

As always, constructive feedback is welcome.

-- Jim Ross

Barges make good pictures, too


Friday morning, I started my day job a few minutes late (the boss got the time back later in the day) because the "new" M/V Mae Etta Hines was in the area. I say "new" because the boat is the former M/V Hoosier State of AEP. When it pushed coal up my way, it was a frequent guest on this blog.

Friday was the first time the boat was up my way (Greenup pool) since its name change and new color scheme. I'll have photos of it in my next entry. For this one, I wanted to show off a photo of the three barges at the head of its tow.

The photo started out something like this ...

... but I wasn't satisfied with it. The colors didn't grab me, and the image felt off. Thus, I tried it in black and white and it came out so much better. The muted colors didn't stand out from the dreary landscape of just after sunrise. In black and white, you get a better contrast of the three barges. From rear to front, an empty tank barge, a loaded tank barge and a loaded hopper barge. It's like a staircase. The ID numbers on the barges stand out more, and in the black and white version, the lines of the barges don't compete with their colors.

All in all, I like the black and white version much better. Although the year is young, it's one of my favorite river photos so far.

Tuesday, January 19, 2021


 It's always nice to get a wave from the pilot. 

In this case, it was from the motor vessel Tri State, a smaller boat that works the harbor at Catlettsburg KY. For the most part, it moves around barges for the bigger boats. The bigger boats deliver the barges to terminals on the Ohio River and its tributaries.

Not only did the pilot give me a wave with his hand, but I had to step back a bit while shooting this boat, as the waves from its movement were getting pretty close to where I was standing near the water's edge.

That's one nice thing about the Ohio River. The water comes all the way up to the shore.

Sunday, January 17, 2021

Two boats at Catlettsburg

 The M/V Kentucky on the left ...

... overtaking the A.B. York on the left.

Saturday, January 9, 2021

M/V Leviticus at Catlettsburg

 With a lot going on and not much daylight to spare, I've not been able to get down to the river much so far this month. This evening I did, but all I saw the M/V Leviticus at Catlettsburg.

Leviticus might not be the easiest name to spell, but at least it's not the M/V Habakkuk or the M/V Deuteronomy.

I had gone up to Lock and Dam 27 to get a photo of the M/V Linda Reed, but she had an empty on the hip on the side I'd be shooting from, so I figured I'd try my luck at Catlettsburg. So far the photo luck has not been with me in January, but the month is still young.