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Radford Bean's Profile

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The fact you're viewing my site means you or someone you know has a passion for trains. For me that passion started as a young boy watching trains pass by at the end of my street. I would often run to the end of my street when trains were coming to wave to the engineer. There was something massive to a young boy of eight about those diesel locomotives thundering by, the ground shaking.

As I got older and began to understand the importance railroads played in the expansion of the West and making the United States the industrial giant it is today, my appreciation for the railroads and the men and women who work for them only grew stronger. I also discovered the major role railroads played in the development of communities and the cultural make-up of those communities. In fact, many towns owe their existence to the railroads.

And what little boy…

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  • Joined July 25, 2011

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About

The fact you're viewing my site means you or someone you know has a passion for trains. For me that passion started as a young boy watching trains pass by at the end of my street. I would often run to the end of my street when trains were coming to wave to the engineer. There was something massive to a young boy of eight about those diesel locomotives thundering by, the ground shaking.

As I got older and began to understand the importance railroads played in the expansion of the West and making the United States the industrial giant it is today, my appreciation for the railroads and the men and women who work for them only grew stronger. I also discovered the major role railroads played in the development of communities and the cultural make-up of those communities. In fact, many towns owe their existence to the railroads.

And what little boy doesn't wake on Christmas morning with the hope of finding a toy train under the Christmas tree? I certainly did.

While attending college to earn a degree in wildlife management, I had the opportunity to take photography courses taught by a graduate of the Brooks Institute of Photography. It was during those classes that I learned to hone my photography skills and train my eyes to see composition. It has been over 20 years since those photography classes, and I have used those years since photographing railroads and wildlife.

I started Tracks Ahead Railroad Photography at the urgings of family, friends, and other photographers who noticed my talent for photographing not just trains but the environment they inhabit and who felt I should expose my work to a larger audience.

Not content with just taking pictures of locomotives, I try to have my railroad pictures tell a story. Railroads crisscross North America through some of the most rugged, pristine country. Laying tracks in some of these regions required tremendous engineering skills, and you don't really understand the feats that went into building the railroad through a rugged area unless you show that area. That is why the railroad is only one element in my landscape pictures.

Getting my shots often requires long hikes, countless hours sitting alongside the tracks waiting for a train to pass, driving down primitive roads, and dealing with the elements and occasionally harmful wildlife.

I hope my pictures convey to you a sense of awe and amazement I seek to achieve.

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