Back to Basics: How Best to Hold a Camera When Shooting in Low-Light

One of the advantages a beginner in any field has over an intermediate or professional who is trying to improve their craft, is that the beginner has nothing to unlearn. So while the idea of holding your camera correctly for better low-light shots might seem painfully basic, this is one of those fundamentals you’d rather learn right the first time.

In the video above, Karl Taylor goes to great pains to make sure that you do just that. He spends seven minutes (okay, 30 seconds of that is promotion…) showing you different techniques that will help you shoot at slower shutter speeds without a tripod, and still capture a crisp shot.

Check it out and, as always with our back to basics posts, feel free to drop additional helpful tips and tricks in the comments.

(via Picture Correct)

  • ShellyKenrickicb

    Uncle Daniel recently got Mercedes-Benz SL-Class SL65 AMG by working
    part-time off of a macbook. Look At This


  • Ralph Hightower

    Useful tips. The shutter speed of 1/focal length is an old rule before the days of autofocus, image stabilized lenses. How has image stabilization changed the rules of shooting no slower than 1/focal length?

  • Remi Freiwald

    Since this video was aimed towards amateur photographers (using APS-C sensors) he should have mentioned, that the rule must be adapted to the croppping: 1/(focal length x crop factor)

    Example: 1/(50 x 1.6) = 1/80s shutter speed for 50mm on Canon Crop Sensors

    @Ralph Hightower:disqus If a lens has image stabilization, you can check its specifications how many stops you gain. If a lens gives you 2 stops more, you can halve the shutter speed twice. In my last example the shutter speed would be (80/2)/2 = 1/20s

  • Smarten_Up

    Memo to Camera manufacturers:

    Here is when I will stop sitting upon my wallet and open it….Until then my 10-year old P&S and 6-year old DSLR work just fine, no real reason to replace either.

    Why do we not have a camera that is ergonomic, that takes advantage of my neck and two good arms to stabilize the camera in space while I look through, yes a viewfinder, preferably an improved EVF?

    No “chimping” at screens for me–it is the single worst part about digital today: if you want to hand hold (and 90% of what I do is hand held, and I would venture that is true for most “prosumers” or advanced amateurs) you need stability, not just for sharpness, but to be able to focus your attention on the picture frame, and its edges.

    Of course I do check my screen, after the shot, but even then I use a large loupe made for the purpose–I want to see the clarity, the exposure, the frame borders, to know what my next move will be–re-shoot, delete, give up, re-think? I want a tool that does the work I need to do, not a mini-computer to which I must adapt.

    And the irony in all this? Now that the picture plane does not need to be a piece of film, directly opposite the lens, we are still using that paradigm, when we have the flexibility to put the sensor WHEREVER it works for the design–the ergonomic design. NO more greasing up my screen with my nose squashed up again a flat screen. Back in the 1960s Modern and Popular Photography ran articles about what manufacturers were learning from their customers, and what they wanted in terms of design. Ergonomic design was #1 on many a list, the ergonomic camera.

    Popular Science promised me a clean, self-drive vehicle too, by 1975. I should live so long!

  • yopyop

    Well, usually they indicate the number of f/stops you win with image stabilized.