i-G12 wrote in post #18525442
I was so shocked at some images a guy took of some stationary birds at 1/80 I even calified if they were taken hand held and he said yes.
Yeah I'm gonna have to practice had with my new 100-400 for my Africa trip.
IMAGE LINK: https://flic.kr/p/bvKUtN Universal.20120403.4316.jpg
Proper holding technique can go a long way: Put the weight of the camera and lens in your left hand, support the left elbow with your tummy and ribcage, - et voilà! your body is now a monopod. Lean your back against a wall or tree for even more stability. Use the right hand just for aiming and control, not for supporting any weight of the camera.
Proper breathing techniques, as if you were in a sharpshooting competition.
Gently squeeze the shutter button, don't mash it with enough force to cause the camera to jiggle.
In a pinch, do a five-shot burst while gently exhaling, and the 3rd and 4th shots will be the best.
This matters more with a longer focal length - pardon a little bit of math here.
On a full-frame camera in landscape/horizontal orientation, a 35mm lens will give you a 54-degree field of view. If your unsteady and jiggly hands cause the camera to rotate by half a degree during the time the shutter was open, that's less than a 1% shift in the image. Image might be a tad blurry but still usable.
On the same camera, a 14mm wide-angle lens will give you a 104-degree field of view. If your unsteady hands cause the camera to rotate by half a degree, that's less than 1/2% movement in the image. Almost insignificant ... ok, maybe not among the pixel-peepers on this site.
On the same camera, a 400mm lens will give you a 5-degree field of view. That half-degree rotation is a whopping 10% shift in the image! It'll be absolutely unusable.
If you don't want to do the math, a good rule of thumb is that the minimum shutter speed should be the inverse of the focal length - so, a 400mm lens needs a 1/400 shutter speed; any slower will result in a blurry photo in the hands of an inexperienced or shakey-hands photographer.
Proper holding and breathing techniques will compensate for this a LOT. Image stabilization will also help a ton, and selecting a proper shutter speed will make up the rest. You'll be hand-holding that 400mm shot in no time.
handheld one-second exposure, with pretty good holding/breathing techniques, good image stabilization, and burst mode:
by Nathan Carter
, on Flickr