Mike Isenberg, whose really beautiful standard gauge under the holiday tree themed photo appears on pages 18 and 19 of the just out January 2007 issue of Classic Toy Trains magazine. Mike is a real pro when it comes to the graphic arts and his photo shows just how talented he is with a camera. The photo shows Mike's magnificent Lionel black 400E circling under a dazzling tree with lots of great accessories in the background. One of Mike's wonderful Coke billboard reproductions can also be seen in the shot. Mike's photo is so good that it just blows away the two other photos included in the two page spread. 'Way to go Mike!
I happen to know that, in spite of how good it is, it took Mike several years to get his photo into CTT. I gave up trying to get them to publish any of my shots. Once I sent them what I thought was a charming photo of a couple of my old war horse standard gauge locos that were seeing duty on my layout at the time. They wrote me back saying that the locos were too scratchy, and didn't I have something that looked nicer (newer)! So I wrote them back and asked: "Isn't your magazine called Classic Toy Trains?" Well, they backtracked a bit at this, but rejected my photo anyway. They have their standards and publish the magazine the way they want to, but CTT's glossy, over-lit, fluffed up photo pages, which are mostly devoid of standard gauge, leave me wishing for something that better captures the charm, nostalgia, authenticity, and originality of our genuine Classic trains. We need a Classic Pre-War Toy Trains magazine or something like that with editors who appreciate the trains so many of us are collecting and running in addition to the new stuff. But then again, we have Marc's Standard Gauge Blog. So how about it? Send us some photos of your trains, accessories and layouts and we'll put them right here!