Tripods are a wonderful accessory to have and can assist you greatly with your photography. There are a large variety of tripods available on the market at present in different shapes and sizes, ranging from compact to full-size devices. Tripods are available to suit all kinds of budgets and come in a range of materials from aluminium to carbon fibre.
With the high ISO functionality and faster shutter speed capabilities of modern cameras, you may be asking why do I even need a tripod? Depending on your genre of photography, tripods can be a versatile and beneficial support. If you don’t already have one, and are considering adding one to your photography kit bag, here are 6 reasons why a tripod can be beneficial to your photography.
1. Ability to photograph in low light
Whatever your preferred type of photography, a tripod is an essential tool for photography, particularly in low light. In these situations, there comes a time where you can no longer hold the camera steady in your hand. Using a tripod will greatly assist you.
2. Ability to photograph long exposures
A tripod allows you to capture a longer exposure by using a slower shutter speed of up to several seconds. This helps to minimise the risk of any movement. While capturing a long exposure the use of a tripod will allow much more light to enter the camera than would be possible if you were taking a picture hand held.
This way you are also capable of capturing movement in your images which would not be possible if you are holding the camera in your hands. Examples of which include movement in cloud formations or light trails.
3. Better stability
One of the most beneficial reasons for using a tripod is that it provides stability to the camera. It also avoids camera shake by the operator, especially in those situations where longer exposure times are necessary. If you are shooting anything from a sunset to starry nights, fireworks or the moon, you will need the stability that a tripod provides, particularly to keep the camera in position.
A tripod can also be advantageous in extreme weathers such as heavy winds. By having your camera mounted on a tripod, you can achieve a steadier shot as the tripod provides much needed stability in blustery conditions.
4. Sharper images
Tripods are a great bit of kit to help you get sharper images. One of the biggest mistakes I see newbie photographers make when shooting in low light is that they try to take too many shots hand held and end up with blurry images. A tripod will assist you in achieving more accurate mages.
5. More time to create shots
The whole photography process takes a lot longer when you are using a tripod. Instead of taking instant handheld shots, the process of setting up a tripod and placing your camera on it slows you down and effectively allows you more time when taking pictures.
Using a tripod in photography forces you to take your time when setting up a shot and subsequently gives you more time to compose your image. The additional time spent on getting your tripod ready can be an investment as it helps you to focus more on your image-taking. This can, in turn, result in better pictures.
6. Ability to frame and adjust shots with ease
Once the camera is mounted on the tripod, you will find you can make subtle changes to your framing with ease. When doing this, by moving the camera in any direction, up and down or left and right, there will also be limited movement.
In addition to these camera related benefits, another blessing with having a tripod is that the weight of the camera is literally lifted off your shoulders when placed on one. As well as holding your camera, a tripod can also double up as a stand for lights or reflectors if required.
Whether or not a tripod is right for you depends on what type of photography you do and your photographic needs. If you enjoy taking pictures of landscapes and architecture, a tripod is a must-have accessory. If you find tripods are generally too heavy to carry around or don’t necessarily need them for low light photography, a monopod is a great substitute that is lighter and can also be used as a walking stick.
In summary, tripods are a wonderful addition to our camera equipment and should be used to your advantage in low light and when photographing longer exposures.
They will help you by providing more stability, slowing you down when taking pictures and facilitating minimal movement when framing and capturing your shots.