Tag Archive: Landscape

Setup a Tripod Correctly

Having a tripod helps in capturing sharp & steady photographs. However, it is just as crucial to know how to setup a tripod properly to get the steady photographs in the first place. Even with a tripod, photos can come out shaky/blurry if one does not pays proper attention to its setup.

Proper Leg Position – As you setup a tripod, how many times have you paid attention to its legs? Ensure the next time you setup, the out-stretched leg make a ‘V’ towards you as the third leg goes parallel to the lens ahead. This positioning ensures you can move freely without accidentally tripping or inducing blur due to tripod shake.

Proper Leg Grounding – As you lay your tripod on the ground check if all the legs lay flat on the ground and not on stones, pebbles, greasy land or slope of any kind. If the tripod is not on a proper ground, it will shift during exposure or may even fall off being imbalanced. If you can find three small flat stones, use them below each of the tripod’s legs to ensure a good grounding. A proper grounding helps in a sturdy shooting experience.

Proper Leg Lock – As you extend your tripod’s legs, make sure the leg locks are secured properly. Whatever the type they may be, pull out & lock or twist & tighten – make that they are tight and there is no shift in their position due to the weight.

Proper Bubble Level – This is a no-brainer, yet most ignore it. Ensure the bubble in the bubble meter is centered. This ensures the tripod is properly levelled & there is no tilt. Also check if your camera is properly levelled on the head to ensure straight axis & other lines in your frame. If your camera has electronic level meter, make use of it.

Proper Head Lock – Ensure the head is locked securely in the shooting position. Check if there is any visible change in the head’s angle due to the weight of the camera. This happens when the lock is not secured properly which causes the head to rotate in the axis due to the weight of the camera attached. This is crucial as long exposure magnify even the tiniest of movement.

Proper Camera Plate Lock – The quick release camera mounting plates ensure a peace of mind yet they need to be checked properly. At times, the camera can move if the mounting plate is not properly secured in its mechanism. Check this before you go ahead and shoot. If your camera has a neck strap attached, roll it over the head to prevent it from wind and causing vibrations.

Proper Center Column – Most of the tripod’s allow you to raise the centre column to gain additional shooting height. However, the center column when raised to the extreme tend to get imbalanced as the centre of gravity changes. Even light breeze can induce shake. I recommend not to raise the center column but in case you require it, raise it only to the absolute minimum you can, never above half of its length. Ensure it is tightly locked when raised.

The Good Old Hook – If in-spite the measures you feel the need for additional stability, use the good old hook on the tripod. Attach your bags/sandbags to this hook to keep the tripod secure when shooting in windy conditions.

Now go ahead and capture breath-taking fireworks on the upcoming Independence day or some nice landscapes. Choice is yours. :)

Photography Ideas for Monsoons

Most photographers during the monsoon pack away their cameras in the closet. They fear the rain & prefer to play safe by not photographing at all during the monsoon. However, if you ask me monsoon presents a plethora of opportunities to photograph. If you follow some safety instructions & keep your equipment safe, you’ll return home with wonderful photographs during the monsoon. I just love shooting during the monsoons. When it rains, I make a point to leave home & I almost always return with beautiful photographs. Here is what I look out to photograph during the monsoons.

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I’ve often heard photographers complain about they being not able to get good pictures as they are unable to travel to places. Off-course, the complain is a genuine one but not entirely true. The simple & effective solution is to shoot repeatedly in your familiar territory. A good photograph can be made almost anywhere. It can be even made into your own house, on your terrace, in your society’s compound etc.

If you want to shoot around & outside your home, consider visiting a park/monument/open space in your locality(I mention these places so you can make yourself comfortable shooting at first as these places provide ready-made photographic opportunities. Once get familiar enough, you’ll be able to look for frames even on streets, alleys etc). Frequent it with the objective of taking photographs. Go there again & again & again. I can assure you, that the photographic opportunities of a particular place are endless but only limited by your imagination. I’ve made most of my photographs at areas around my home yet many people think they are made at some far away exotic locations. Go out at different times of a day, shoot even if the conditions are unfavorable. If not a good photograph at-least you’ll gather experience of shooting under a particular lighting condition.


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