just bought a tripod and took a couple of pictures that look very clear. Is it my imagination or do they really make a difference ? When should i use a tripod.
Anytime you want! LOL. I have a good one, but seldom use it. But you need IS lenses, a really steady hand, and/or a fast shutter! For waterfalls, fireworks, northern lights, etc., you have to have one.
I'm sure your shots will be sharper with it.
I always carry mine with me....even when i "know" I dont need it, I usually end up whipping it out for whatever reason.
You can usually scrape by without using one for relatively close things that are fairly still or if you have enough light for a very fast shutter speed (above 1/200) The further out you zoom, the more the body's natural shake is magnified on the sensor of your camera, so for subjects that require you to zoom out beyond say 55mm, you should use a tripod, or at least a monopod.
Also a tripod just makes you look cool, IMO....:)
A tripod can improve your pictures in general, and especially in garden/nature photography :
- in low light, when you need a slow shutter speed.
- when you need the added 'depth of field' (a larger distance from the lens in sharp focus), a tripod allows you to use a smaller aperture.)
- for panoramic pictures made using multiple images you will stitch or paste together
- for pictures near ground level, using a small tripod, or using a accessory clamp on a tripod leg. (A tripod and a swinging viewing screen on some digital cameras lets you get ground level pictures easily)
- in close-up photography.
The added burden of a tripod will be forgotten when you see the picture on your wall!
Here's one i took of my kitchen. What a difference it made with tripod.
And if possible use a shutter release cable to further reduce movement...or the self timer if the subject is static.
that's above my head, don't know much about photography. lol
Clairdo, I want your kitchen!! JoanMN/FL
Clairdo, as you take more photos, it will be obvious that some pictures seem a little soft or out of focus. Camera wobble is usually the cause. When you see those kinds of pictures you will know you should have used the tripod. Next time you are in a similar light or distance situation you will remember to drag out the tripod. May sound a little simplistic to some, but seeing and associating is the best teacher--anyway for me it was. When you use a flash or shoot in bright sunlight, you will seldom need a tripod. Of course you can always use one to get photos of yourself;)
On the other hand, I spend most of my time figuring out how not to use a tripod. I hate tripods, hate lugging them out on nature trips, hate trying to focus on moving objects, hate unpacking and setting them up, hate everything about them. I prefer things like fence posts, car windows, car hoods, trees, chair backs, even monopods, anything to give my hands a steady support while I shoot. Not saying you shouldn't use tripod, just giving some options.
I'm with bean counter. I know I should use them more, but, my biggest issue with them is trying to get the shot framed and with the angle I want with a tripod.
That applies mostly to macros and flowers, but, the picture you can get (if somewhat wobbly) in a few seconds moving the camera around free hand can take "forever" to get set as well with a tripod.
As a rule of thumb, use a tripod if the exposure speed is slower than 1/60 sec. Also, use a tripod if zoomed out more than 1.5 times normal focal length. For example, 2x focal length and 1/120 sec is equivalent to 1X normal focal length and 1/60 sec (with respect to camera movement). The farther you zoom, the faster the shutter needs to be.
Technical reasons for using or not using a tripod above are quite valid.
Other reasons for the tripod are to be able to carefully study your composition, take test shots and review the result, while maintaining a fixed view.
Perhaps there is some movement you want to capture from a fixed position, such as moving cars, birds, people. After setup, lock focus where you want it, then watch the scene change and click at the magic moment. You don't have to watch on the camera viewer - watch the scene itself.