2006 Creative Photography Awards

Two photographers with creative views of railroaders at work tied for first place in the Center’s 2006 awards program. They are Scott Lothes, Muroran, Hokkaido, Japan, and Misko Kranjec, Ljubljana, Slovenia. Third place awards went to Jeffrey Mast, Canton, Michigan, and Kevin Scanlon, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Since there was a tie for first place, there was no second place award.

Honorable mention awards went to Howard Ande, Bartlett, Ill.; Patrick J. Cashin, New York, N.Y.; Steve Crise, Pomona, Ca.; Ken Fitzgerald, Benbrook, Texas; Joe Greenstein, Brooklyn, NY; George W. Hamlin, Fairfax, Va.; Robert Jordan, Marengo, Ill.; Mark W. Jones, Walnut Creek, Ca.; George Kollar, Pittsburgh, Pa.; Trever Miller, Tarentum, Pa.; Michael Rosenthal, Newark, N.J.; and Gene P. Schaeffer, Pittsburgh, Pa.

The winning photographs were displayed at the California State Railroad Museum in Sacramento. The exhibit is another component of “Representations of Railroad Work,” a three-year program funded by the North American Railway Foundation.

Awards were announced March 25 at the Center’s fourth “Conversations about Photography” conference at Marquette University, Milwaukee. Of the winners, three used digital images, one a transparency.

All entrants submitted a vast array of images, many of them quite stunning, which made the competition a challenge to judge. In selecting the winning photographs, the judges had these comments:

“Lothes’ photos were not only technically very challenging to execute, but were extremely creative and surrealistic in appearance, and were far different from others that were submitted. They captured the beauty of contemporary steam railroading in China at night, in a way that has not been done before.

“Misko Kranjec’s images were submitted five photos that not only individually were very strong images, as a group were equally strong. His photos turned mundane, everyday events to extraordinary photos that put the viewer right in the scene. These images captured the life of the railroader in various settings, anyone who has ever worked on a railroad can easily identify with Misko’s images.

“Kevin Scanlon’s image at a steel mill, showed the interesting relationship between man and industry, in a creative manner.

“Jeff Mast’s image of an engineer cleaning the headlight on a steam locomotive at twilight was a classic image that was executed nicely, and had strong aesthetic appeal.”

Fireman trimming coal at night in steam locomotive tender in China, photo by Scott Lothes
Slovenia railroad worker, photo by Misko Kranjec
Scott Lothes (top) and Misko Kranjec tied for first place in the 2006 awards program. Lothes portrayed a Chinese fireman trimming coal, while Kranjec submitted an evocative series of five photographs of Slovenian railway workers.