We all want beautiful images and we want them to be in focus. Sometimes it’s not a focusing issue so much as not holding your camera steady.
So how do you keep your camera steady? What if you have shaky hands? Well, it truly is all in how you hold it.
Let’s talk about real cameras with lenses.
First things first, you need to keep the camera braced. I’ve seen many people hold a camera on both sides. This does not support the camera. You need to keep your right hand on the side of the camera and your fingers on the buttons. But your left hand needs to support your camera. Place it under the lens to support not only the camera, but the lens.
Secondly, you need to brace yourself. Think of yourself as a human tripod – your job is to support the camera and keep it steady. You can do that if your body isn’t braced. So think about how best to brace your body.
These things methods will help you hold your camera and your body steady, but there are a few additional things you can do to ensure you don’t shake the camera when you press the shutter release (the “picture taking button”).
First, check your breathing. For a steady trigger finger, you snap the shot on your exhale. Really want to get it perfect? Breath in, breath out. Click. Pay attention to your breathing and when you breathe out and stop, right before inhaling… THAT is when you snap the picture.
Story time: When I was in the Army, we had to learn the fine art of weaponry. I’d been shooting guns my whole life, so I thought I knew something. Nope. One of the first things they did was to separate those who grew up with guns from first timers. The first timers were easier to teach, you see. No bad habits to break.
You’ll find this is true with photography, or anything you’ve done before, but are trying now to learn best practices. So be patient with yourself.
Oh, and when do you pull the trigger on a gun? Same as a camera: when you breathe out and your breathing pauses.
Finally, what if the wind is blowing hard, you’re tired, or some other element is making all of this difficult? Brace yourself against a wall, set your camera on a ledge, of find some other immobile object to help steady your situation. Sometimes is helps to kneel down on one knee and brace your camera arm (left arm) on the other knee.
"Lori is an exceptional photographer, and was my first choice for capturing images of my son for his senior pictures!! She made him feel at ease immediately, traveled to the locations he was interested in, and captured who he is perfectly!" ~ Tonia R.
Lori Stead is a fine art portrait photographer in Corpus Christi, TX. She enjoys creating maternity, newborn, seniors, couples, family, children, and boudoir portraits. She is also a wife, mother of four, and adventurer.