HDR Photography Tip:  Keeping the camera steady

This is a guest post from fellow photographer Pat O’Brien.

Hey everyone, my name is Pat O’Brien. Photography is a hobby of mine which I’m very passionate about. Photography has always been an interest of mine as a kid. It wasn’t until I was in the Army that I was sent to my first real course on photography. Although I wasn’t an Army photographer, my commander wanted us to publish some public relations article, and I was assigned the task. I tend to focus more on landscape photography and have recently been doing more portrait work. Anyways, that’s who I am, and a little of where I came from. When Scott asked me to write up a tip for his HDR Tips section, I was quite thrilled to be included!

My tip is a basic one, but important nonetheless. I’ve seen many successful handheld HDR photos, but I haven’t had much luck with them. My tip to you is to use a stable tripod, nothing fancy, just stable. If you don’t have a tripod nearby, think of something stable that you could use. For example in the photo attached I was working in Boston and brought my camera along but not my tripod. When I got to my hotel room I was greeted with this beautiful skyline. I knew right away time was ticking to capture those colors as an HDR photo – but how without a tripod? I tried some failed handheld attempts. So I did some quick improvising and grabbed the ironing board, set it up in front of the window and voila – instant stable tripod! Using a stable surface insured I had the same composition in all of my HDR frames which is necessary in post production.

There you have it! I hope you’ve enjoyed my story, and tip. Thanks for checking it out!

Photo by Pat O’Brien. View more photos on Pat’s website. Pat can also be found on Twitter @OBrienStudios

Thanks for reading and happy shooting

This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. aw some work

  2. aw some work

  3. Hi

    Great article – I was faced with just this situation during a trip to Rome when accosted by the Italian Security Police. I was told that using a tripod is only for “Artistic Photos” and to get permission would cost me $300 Euros. It is amazing what you can find to steady a camera…a wall, fountain ledge, security barrier post…almost anything works. I always try to shoot at 3FPS and -2,0,+2 EV.

    No tripod on this shot http://tinyurl.com/2bj8wob

    Regards, ErikI

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