Tuesday, April 26, 2016

book covering 60 years of Yves Broncard's railway photos

Those who read the French publication La Vie du Rail will have seen the Yves Broncard credit line plenty of times and as the title of this recent book indicates, it is a collection of scenes taken by the now 86-year-old since the end of the 1940s.  Like the magazine, the book is primarily about France, but there are short excursions further afield including across La Manche/English Channel and the Pyrénées to Spain.

French railways have featured plenty of variety and plenty of changes in that time, from the TGV high speed passenger trains to the metre-gauge local interest lines, often called tramways, which now are nearly all gone.  The variety that Yves Broncard has sought to capture hasn't just been the trains, but also the atmosphere provided by people and things surrounding them, including station personnel, crossing keepers, mécaniciens, and, of course, passengers; plus typical town and countryside ambience.

There's probably about half and half in coverage of steam locomotives and their replacements, and about 60% b/w, 40% color.  The book is large format, and quite a few pictures are spread across the gutter although mostly with them the fold isn't in too irksome a place.  208 pages, hardcover with jacket.

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