Confession: I HATE TRIPODS!

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by magkelly, May 6, 2010.

  1. magkelly

    magkelly TPF Noob!

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    Never in all the time I've been shooting with either film or digital have I ever not found carrying and using a tripod annoying. Mind you, I have two, a small table one, and a decent regular one, but I always find myself not using them even though I know I probably should use them more.

    Do any of you out there feel that way?

    Me, I tend to use convenient objects as tripods to steady my shots far more often than I use my actual tripods. That includes my arm, my legs, other significantly convenient body parts I won't mention in public (wink), tables, chairs, walls, fences, chip cans, sneakers, whatever's handy, just about everything except my actual tripods.

    Sometimes I don't know why I even bought them to be honest. They spend more time in the closet than they do in my hands. I try to do what I was taught, but honestly, I always just feel like they get in my way.
     
  2. ghpham

    ghpham TPF Noob!

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    Whatever works for you. As for me, my hands aren't that steady, so I will use a tripod every chance I get.
     
  3. LaFoto

    LaFoto Just Corinna in real life Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Well, I'm certainly with you, Mag. Like yourself, I have a small table thingy and a "decent one" (no more no less), and unless I decide to deliberately go take night photography, you wouldn't find my lugging my tripod about. It is lightweight, and yet cumbersome, if you're on an outing with the family, for example, see new things that you want to capture, and have to take out the tripod, set it up, adjust the camera ... well, I'd have lost the rest of my family a million times if I were to bother. Plus, for as long as the light allows for it, I do love the freedom I have when I DON'T use my tripod.

    And like yourself, Mag, also I know that it may very well be WISER to use the tripod more often! So yes, you are not the only one!
     
  4. magkelly

    magkelly TPF Noob!

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    I think one of the reasons I don't use them as much as I probably ought is because they do attract attention when you use them. I've shot a lot in a couple of big cities and I always feel I have to hide my gear when not actually using it. A tripod is just too noticeable for me to feel comfortable. I don't even use a proper camera bag anymore. I have a normal bag that holds all my gear that looks like a cool tote and that's it. I just don't want people noting what I do. To me that's a good way to lose a camera when you are shooting with loads of people around in public situations. Also, I only have one camera and that's all I can afford. If I lost it I actually couldn't afford to replace it right now so I am very careful.
     
  5. RobNZ

    RobNZ TPF Noob!

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    Tripods are a PITA but I use them more often than not, but I do cheat a little, I picked up a cheap sony tripod that is small enough to fit into a small backpack, limited with height and stabilty but I most often use it close to ground level.

    The latest addition to my gear is a sand bag, I find I use this more than the tripod because I can place it on almost any surface, the ground, door sill of the car, fence post, a rock etc and its fairly easy to adjust to level and line the camera up. I can empty the sand and refill quickly if required and it keeps the camera rock steady for long exposures, I could not find one locally so I made one myself with an old pair of shorts that I cut up and sewed up with a velcro "zipper". I suspect a resealable plastic bag would probably work just as good though.

    Bear in mind I shoot landscapes 70% of the time, I have though, invented in my head the ultimate "tripod" for studio still life shots mainly.

    It would have a clamp for clamping to a table or heavy base, that has an arm attached with some kind of ball head at the clamp/base end as well as at the other end for camera to mount onto.

    In the middle of this arm is another ball joint for even further simplicity in placing the camera exactly where you want it, all 3 joints would be locked/unlocked with the flick of one switch/lever. 3 foot reach. Simple but I have yet to work out a way to lock all 3 ball joints simultaneously and easily.

    Probably already exists with a price way out of my reach though.
     
  6. pbelarge

    pbelarge TPF Noob!

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    Same here.
    Every day I take my camera out, so to goes my tripod. I took a walk in NYC and White Plains (both cities) and did not take the tripod. There were times on both walks a tripod would have helped me. Either that or I need to drink more on these walks. :mrgreen:

    When taking my tripod I rarely strap it to my pack, it is either in one of my hands or I have a shoulder strap. I carry it so often, I hardly notice I have it with me.

    I use it so often, that I am as used to how it functions as I am with my camera. Maybe you just need to use it more.
     
  7. KenC

    KenC Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Yeah, I hate them too, and don't carry one as often as I should. I found a monopod to be much less burdensome. If you have a medium-large backpack, you can find one that will fit so it will be out of sight. It doesn't allow you to take extreme close-up shots very well or long (ca. 1/4 s or slower) exposures very well, but for the many situations where you want to use 1/30-1/8 or so, it can get you a sharp image.
     
  8. --ares--

    --ares-- TPF Noob!

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    I carry a mono-pod instead, it's a lot more convenient for me and when I'm done I attach it to a carabiner to my bag for easy carrying.
     
  9. Jeff Colburn

    Jeff Colburn TPF Noob!

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    I've never been a huge fan of tripods. I used them a lot when I did studio work, but now that I do nature/landscape shooting I almost never use them. I do have a monopod that I use for slow shutter speeds (below 1/20 second) but everything else is hand held.

    Have Fun,
    Jeff
     
  10. Sw1tchFX

    Sw1tchFX TPF Noob!

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    It might be because your tripod isn't very good.

    My tripod is heavy, but it's country strong for the size of a system I use, and every time I use i'm glad I did.
     
  11. K8-90

    K8-90 TPF Noob!

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    I'm about to buy a relatively good one to replace my broken $19.99 special :p

    However, I'm not a fan of tripods, either. I mean, they serve a purpose and all, but I find unless I'm going out for the sole purpose of photography (ie. not camping, hiking, family events, etc.) a tripod is just too inconvenient!
     
  12. Dao

    Dao No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    It depends on what I am going to do. Most of the time when I just walk around with my standard zoom lens, I do not carry my tripod. However, if I know I am going to need it for sure, I will bring along with one.

    And I always use tripod for product photography.
     

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