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07-29-2018, 10:01 AM - 1 Like   #31
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QuoteOriginally posted by lesmore49 Quote
Tripod...do you use.....or not use ?

That is the question.

I've got some good tripods I've accumulated over the years. I have my big tripod, a Leitz Tiltall, my two 'smalls'...one a Minolta Table Top....really a very good copy of the old Leitz Table Top and last and least...my Gorilla.

I still use them all, but just occasionally and not as much as I used a tripod, during the film years. I got the Gorilla in the digital era.

Part of it is that I don't do as many low light shots as I used to and the big reason is that I have the ability to set/change ISO on my modern digital cameras . On my film camera, I would occasionally maybe push 400 Tri-X film to 800, but I usually didn't like the results...ie; grain. That was one of the major reasons I got a tripod and I still use a tripod...more... when using film cameras.

I also don't use a large tripod now in the digital era, as opposed to the film era because back then (film days) I used some large, heavy, cumbersome cameras...like my Mamiya TLR medium format. If I had a Pentax 645 digital, I think I would be using my Leitz Tiltall a lot with that that equipment..

With my K-1...I can go from 100 ISO to 12,500 and the picture still looks real good...grain wise. Amazing to me, who started getting serious about photography in the 1960's.

So I don't need my tripods as much as I used too...again still use them...but not anywhere as much.

What about you and why/why not do you use/not use a tripod as much as you once did ?
When I was teaching college level photography back in the '90s, I used to tell my students that a tripod was the 'single most important factor in learning composition.' Still true today!

07-29-2018, 05:05 PM - 1 Like   #32
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QuoteOriginally posted by WildPortraits Quote
Ter-Or- This reminds me to get out and do some more firefly long exposure photos. I should go to some open areas, but they really like the same places mosquitoes do...


I've been shooting fireflies a lot this spring and summer, in the Smokies, a local park, and most often in my yard. I think in my longest exposures there must be some mosquito trails- they are definitely more abundant most nights than the fireflies
The Dixon Bioblitz in 2015 had a storm of biblical proportions Friday night, so no outdoor moths, bats, etc. That was a June weekend, hopefully being later in the season the weather will be less...volatile. It's prime time for hopefully finding Bombus affinis, the Rusty-Patched Bumblebee. Wish us luck. And with luck I'll get to do some long exposure work myself. Hopefully not just mosquitoes!
07-29-2018, 07:06 PM   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by ronthejazzguy Quote
When I was teaching college level photography back in the '90s, I used to tell my students that a tripod was the 'single most important factor in learning composition.' Still true today!
I tend to shoot a lot of landscapes and a few years back when I shot (B&W) film, I used to shoot my landscape shots off of a tripod almost exclusively.

After taking a break from photography for a few years, I bought a digital camera and thought "Why bother with the tripod? Shake reduction and using a high ISO means you don't need a tripod." So I started leaving my tripod at home. It was a relief to not lug my tripod around. Shooting hand-held was fast and convenient. And my shots were acceptably sharp.

However, I'm coming to the realization that my composition has suffered as a result of me not taking the time to compose my shots carefully. I've started to move back to shooting my landscapes from a tripod to the extent possible.

I admittedly had gotten careless. I need to slow down and take more time before taking my shots.
07-30-2018, 03:33 AM - 2 Likes   #34
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It really depends. If I am walking around with my family then definitely no tripod. I do the best I can hand held. If I am going out in a morning shooting landscapes then I definitely do use a tripod. It allows me to use pixel shift, keep my iso down, and get longer exposures than I could get hand held. I also think that using a tripod helps you be more deliberate in composing and visualizing shots.

I'm convinced that a lot of people would get at least as much benefit from using a tripod more as from bumping up from APS-C to full frame. Of course, you can still use a tripod with full frame cameras too...

07-30-2018, 08:52 AM   #35
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I use a tripod as often as possible. My photography tends to compliment the use of a tripod.
07-30-2018, 10:07 AM   #36
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QuoteOriginally posted by TER-OR Quote
The Dixon Bioblitz in 2015 had a storm of biblical proportions Friday night, so no outdoor moths, bats, etc. That was a June weekend, hopefully being later in the season the weather will be less...volatile. It's prime time for hopefully finding Bombus affinis, the Rusty-Patched Bumblebee. Wish us luck. And with luck I'll get to do some long exposure work myself. Hopefully not just mosquitoes!
Ter-Or - good luck with better weather. And definitely try long exposures for fireflies. I shoot anywhere from a second to minutes for them, with varying looks. It's always magical to photograph them, regardless of the end results
07-30-2018, 10:14 AM   #37
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For landscapes and architecture/real estate I almost always use one. That is a lot of what I shoot so I'm often schlepping a tripod. I often like to use long shutter speeds with water so it's pretty much a requirement then. Especially for the 645D but also for the K-1.

Even when I shoot live music if it is at our scenic outdoor venue, I at least strap a small tripod to my bike for some nice low light campfire and low light scenics once the sun is down. For the actual music I do not use it and rely on high iso.
07-30-2018, 11:04 AM   #38
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QuoteOriginally posted by WildPortraits Quote
Ter-Or - good luck with better weather. And definitely try long exposures for fireflies. I shoot anywhere from a second to minutes for them, with varying looks. It's always magical to photograph them, regardless of the end results
The longest I've managed in the back yard was 10 seconds. There's a bit too much ambient light from houses etc.

07-30-2018, 11:37 AM   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by TER-OR Quote
The longest I've managed in the back yard was 10 seconds. There's a bit too much ambient light from houses etc.
It's easy enough to stack multiple exposures which lets you keep the ambient light down but still have several minutes (or even hours) worth of firefly activity. Newer cameras even have a built-in multi-exposure blending mode that should be suitable ("Bright" mode).

Just one of the many things I use a tripod for. I use mine frequently, I've regretted being lazy and not using it far too often.
07-30-2018, 12:13 PM   #40
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QuoteOriginally posted by TER-OR Quote
The longest I've managed in the back yard was 10 seconds. There's a bit too much ambient light from houses etc.
Since I have a big backyard, I manage to point my camera away from the apartment next door and don't get too much light even at long exposures. Of course sometimes the moon comes up early and overpowers everything. But I find sometimes a dreamy twilight look can be magical for fireflies.



Last edited by WildPortraits; 07-30-2018 at 12:19 PM.
07-30-2018, 12:31 PM   #41
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After several years of broken lenses due to unstable tripods, I decided to take the plunge and have been using Manfrotto Carbon Fiver Pro series tripods since the last 5 years. Love them.
07-30-2018, 12:32 PM   #42
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QuoteOriginally posted by lesmore49 Quote
Tripod...do you use, or not use
Studio work yes, otherwise not so much.
07-30-2018, 01:48 PM   #43
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Originally posted by BrianR It's easy enough to stack multiple exposures which lets you keep the ambient light down but still have several minutes (or even hours) worth of firefly activity. Newer cameras even have a built-in multi-exposure blending mode that should be suitable ("Bright" mode).

Just one of the many things I use a tripod for. I use mine frequently, I've regretted being lazy and not using it far too often.


I often stack multiple exposures but when it gets totally dark I also like to play with longer exposures in a single frame, too. Most of my firefly photography is in my backyard so I literally only carry it around 100 feet into the woods and point it away from adjacent buildings and the street.
07-30-2018, 02:01 PM   #44
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For my type of photography and interests (mainly events and people photography), I seldom use tripods or mono-pods as nailing the focus is not a real big problem which can be managed with the proper shutter speed. I do have good tripods and mono-pods, but they are just there in case. However, I do find the gorilla tripod a good option to use for traveling purposes and some tricky shots.
07-30-2018, 02:36 PM   #45
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QuoteOriginally posted by WildPortraits Quote
I often stack multiple exposures but when it gets totally dark I also like to play with longer exposures in a single frame, too. Most of my firefly photography is in my backyard so I literally only carry it around 100 feet into the woods and point it away from adjacent buildings and the street.
Likewise - most of my firefly photography is in my backyard. Sometimes I'm literally asleep on my couch while the camera and tripod do all the work.

I've posted a few before, exposure time is dictated by what I want from the ambient (from a few seconds to several minutes each), and as many frames as needed for the firefly activity I want to record.
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