Photography accessories: transform your pictures for less than £100

    | Photography Tips | 25/11/2013 00:01am

    Setting up your tripod

    Unless you’re using your tripod indoors, the chances are that the ground will be uneven, so you need to get used to setting up your tripod on every type of surface.

    The most common situation is when the ground isn’t level, so you need to adjust the legs to accommodate this. You can adjust the length of each leg to suit the height of the ground, or you can change the angle of each leg.

    For low-level shots you need to unscrew part of the centre column, allowing you to get down to around 30cm from the ground.

    Alternatively, you could either reverse the centre column or remove the head and attach it to the bottom of the column. This enables the camera to be positioned at almost ground level, but the camera will be upside down, making it more difficult to operate easily.

    Get extra stability
    Most budget tripods are quite light, so you‘ll find that adding extra weight will help to make them more stable, especially in windy conditions.

    Some models have a hook on the end of the centre column to which you can attach your camera bag. In the absence of a hook you can hook the handle of your bag over the top of the tripod.

    The right way to set up your tripod

    The right way to set up your tripod

    Extend the top sections first, keep the column low, and check the ground beneath the tripod’s feet

    1 Use the top sections
    Extend the largest section legs first. The smaller sections at the bottom of the legs are less rigid than the thicker top sections, and so are more prone to wobble and flex.

    2 Keep the column low
    Avoid raising the centre column. This is the most unstable component of affordable tripods, so avoid using it if you can, especially in windy weather.

    3 Check the footing
    Make sure the feet are on stable ground. on slippery surfaces such as wet rock or loose gravel, try to wedge the feet in position, especially if you’re shooting down low.

    Features to look for in a tripod

    Features to look for in a tripod: solid construction

    Solid construction
    lLook for the best aluminium construction you can find. extend the tripod up to its full height and gently press down on the top of the tripod to see how much movement there is. a budget model won’t be static, but it shouldn’t move much.

    Features to look for in a tripod: effective leg locks

    Effective leg locks
    make sure the leg locks are easy to open and close, and that they hold their positions. Try extending the legs, then gently press down on them to make sure they don’t compress easily.

    Features to look for in a tripod: versatility

    make sure the tripod allows you to shoot at low levels by having adjustable leg angles. The ability to remove the centre column is also useful for really low-level shots.

    PAGE 1: Best photography accessories: Tripods
    PAGE 2: Setting up your tripod & features to look for
    PAGE 3: Getting the most from budget flashguns
    PAGE 4: Tips for using manual flash
    PAGE 5: Using neutral density filters
    PAGE 6 – Filter systems explained
    PAGE 7 – Using ND grad filters
    PAGE 8 – Using polarisers
    PAGE 9 – Common problems caused by filters


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    Posted on Monday, November 25th, 2013 at 12:01 am under Photography Tips.

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