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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
Thread started 05 Sep 2012 (Wednesday) 17:31
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Tip for shaky hands (longer lenses)

 
treaks
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Sep 07, 2012 03:51 |  #16

Two second timer.

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chrismarriott66
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Sep 07, 2012 04:11 |  #17

I always use a battery grip as I love the amount of camera you have to actually hold on to! I too like to have a high shutter speed when using the 70-200, but in low light at f2.8/iso1600 I will really tuck my left elbow into my chest and cup the lens to try and get a solid platform to work with... if that's no good for whatever reason then the monopod will come out :)


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hollis_f
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Sep 07, 2012 05:24 |  #18

If I'm using a long lens then the very last thing I want is more weight at the camera end of things! Like Alan says, I use my left hand to support the lens. The right hand is bearing virtually none of the weight and it just used for aiming and firing.


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John ­ from ­ PA
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Sep 07, 2012 07:00 |  #19

You might want to try a gadget that years ago was called a "poor man's monopod". You can make it yourself for about $5. Go to a hardware store and get an eyebolt with a 1/4-20 thread and a decent size washer, maybe something about 1 to 2 inch diameter. Also purchase two nuts to go on the eyebolt. Position the nuts so that about 1/4 inch of thread is exposed. That amount of thread screws into the normal tripod mount of the camera body. You don't want too much thread as then screwing it into the body can cause damage - hence the reason for the two nuts locked against each other.

Now get a long shoelace or something similar and tie it to the eyebolt. You want the length to reach the ground when you have the camera at eye level with a decent amount of excess. MIne was made from a 72 inch rawhide shoe lace. Tie the other end of the lace to the washer.

To use, with the eyebolt attached to the camera, simply drop the washer to the ground and stand on it at a point where some upward pull is of course restrained by the cord. This steadies the camera vertically which is the main issue in holding a camera steady.

YouTube video at http://www.youtube.com​/watch?v=LLlJl7TbXTA (external link) if you want to see it in action.

More ideas by searching Google with "string tripod" or Google Images using the same term.

One of the things I like about this is it can be carried in a pocket and even in museums where tripods and/or monopods are frowned upon, no one seems to care when I use a string monopod.




  
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Perfectly ­ Frank
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Sep 09, 2012 00:15 |  #20

amfoto1 wrote in post #14958136 (external link)
Get a 5 or 6 foot length of 1/4 or 3/8 inch rope. Tie a 1/4 x 20 bolt in one end to screw into the tripod socket on your camera. Depending upon the bolt used, might need a washer on it so it can be snug up on the cord. Let the other end of the cord or rope drop to the ground and step on it so it's nice and taut when holding the camera in shooting position. Instant steadiness. I guarantee you can shoot a couple steps slower shutter speed using this trick. Plus you can easily coil up and put the cord/rope in a pocket.


And, yes, a battery grip helps a lot. The extra mass helps balance the camera even better than a big old flash in the hotshoe.

This is an interesting topic, as I shoot air shows at slow shutter speeds to capture prop blur. I might try the rope trick. If I can get two extra stops that would be great. Although I don't know how it would work with a 300 f2.8 while panning fast moving planes.

You can buy a similar product here...
http://www.not-a-pod.com/aboutus.asp (external link)

Also interesting is the idea of camera weight improving stability. I read a 1D4 review where the owner attributed sharper images to the extra weight of the 1D4.
I recently bought a 1D4 and got sharper images (taken at slow shutter speeds) than those produced by my lighter weight 7D. Although I don't know if it's due to the increased weight or technology inside the camera.


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hennie
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Sep 09, 2012 04:22 |  #21

Additional to all the usefull tips you might also consider a video bracket that supports the camera against your body. It will work on all lenses and gives me an advantage of two stops.
I mean something like this

IMAGE NOT FOUND
IMAGE IS A REDIRECT OR MISSING!
HTTP response: 404 | MIME changed to 'text/html' | Byte size: ZERO



  
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khukri
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Sep 09, 2012 09:54 |  #22

Vertical grip, IS lenses, higher ISO, breadth control will all help mitigate the problem. Add a monopod too if these do not help enough.
Ref original post: Trembling fingers/hands has physiological origin. Changing lenses or increasing weight of camera+lens should not make any difference to hand tremble or pulse rate.




  
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ssmanak
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Sep 09, 2012 10:27 |  #23

I read this method in a book, it is helpfull for static scenes:

Works if you have battery grip on camera. Use left eye on view finder. Now rotate your head to left until camera body (battery grip) pushes against your left shoulder. After adjusting zoom / focus, put your left hand on top of right and push the camera firmly into left shoulder. Keep both elbows into stomch. Now your two arms & left shoulder acts as a good tripod.


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1Tanker
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Sep 09, 2012 16:02 |  #24

ssmanak wrote in post #14967603 (external link)
I read this method in a book, it is helpfull for static scenes:

Works if you have battery grip on camera. Use left eye on view finder. Now rotate your head to left until camera body (battery grip) pushes against your left shoulder. After adjusting zoom / focus, put your left hand on top of right and push the camera firmly into left shoulder. Keep both elbows into stomch. Now your two arms & left shoulder acts as a good tripod.

Interesting visual. :lol: Being completely right-handed(it seems the left side of my body is basically just there for balance..haha), i don't even know if my left eye will work through the vf! :p


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Randy ­ Digby
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Sep 09, 2012 16:50 |  #25

yamatama wrote in post #14952248 (external link)
Ive been shooting for about 4 years and always had problems keeping my hand steady with longer lenses (70-200 and now 135) not that theyre heavy, just shaky hands. Yesterday i was shooting and forgot to take my 580 EX of the camera (was using it with my 24-105) and when i changed the lens to my 135, wow what a diference! the extra weight of the flash balanced the camera (5dm2) and my pulse is rock steady now. Haha maybe some of you wont care at all but im sure someone out there can benefit from this :)

Good find. When you find something that works for you and your environment, that is always a winner.

I picked up a little video filming trick (maybe I was the last to learn) several years ago at work. When we got involved with Lean Manufacturing one of our projects involved video filming a machine changeover in a manufacturing plant. We would video the four man crew with multiple normal personal video cameras and then review every aspect of the changeover in a classroom environment. We learned a pretty good trick that I still use personally. We would mount the camera to a tripod, close the legs and extend the legs half way down. This allowed us to move rapidly around our subjects without a lot of camera shake with the camera movement dampened by the extended weight (poor man's steady-cam). Because we were using the display screen on the cameras, there was no need to keep them at eye level. This worked great when all of a sudden we needed to have the camera above the mechanic looking over his head or shoulders to record his work. I was amazed at how this handling method smoothed out the video, especially when the camera operator was on the move.

I understand this would not apply to still photography, but a lot of us here also use the video format from time to time.


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drzenitram
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Sep 09, 2012 18:38 |  #26

I have another funny little trick, using a Gorillapod SLR-Zoom, I mount my camera, then fold the gorillapod so that one leg is on each of my shoulders, and hold the third leg in my left hand, I push the camera back so that my viewfinder is pressed to my eye, and voila. looks a little ridiculous, but I've seen 2-3 stops of "IS" using this method.

just took this example 85mm @ 1/25 @ iso 100, 1 60w lamp:

IMAGE: http://i45.tinypic.com/oka61i.jpg

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Perfectly ­ Frank
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Sep 09, 2012 21:28 |  #27

hennie wrote in post #14966771 (external link)
Additional to all the usefull tips you might also consider a video bracket that supports the camera against your body. It will work on all lenses and gives me an advantage of two stops.
I mean something like this

IMAGE NOT FOUND
HTTP response: 404 | MIME changed to 'text/html' | Byte size: ZERO

^^ This does look interesting. Another product is the BushHawk. Anyone use it?

http://bushhawk.com/ (external link)


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Azathoth
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Sep 10, 2012 09:36 |  #28

amfoto1 wrote in post #14958136 (external link)
Try to time your shots between heartbeats.

:eek:


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Tip for shaky hands (longer lenses)
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