I generally stay pretty low-key on my camera gear. Even though there are so many different things I’d love to add to my repertoire, I’ve had to build up my stash pretty slowly. By saving my pennies and through a few side jobs, I’ve been able to add a few lenses and favorite camera bags to my collection of gear over the many years that I’ve been carrying a “big girl” camera.
But one piece of equipment I can’t believe I didn’t add sooner was a tripod.
When I was given the assignment to take a self-portrait for a photography workshop I was attending, I knew I was going to have to either hand over my camera to one of my kids or think about getting a tripod.
I’ll be honest, I pretty much hate getting out from behind the camera. Having to take a self-portrait for this class made me all kinds of stressed. I prefer to stay in my happy place behind the lens taking pictures and telling stories.
But here’s the thing. I’m so glad that I was pushed to take a self-portrait and that it led me to get a tripod. It wasn’t as horribly scary as I thought and I’m wondering how I went so long without one.
A tripod has become a key part of my picture-taking process. I’ve used it so many times that it basically just stays set up in a corner of my office at all times. It’s been used all over my house, inside and out.
Here’s what I love about a tripod:
I can take pictures all by myself. No, I’m not taking daily head shots, but having a tripod has helped me be a little less shy about taking my own photo. It was so helpful for me to be able to get more comfortable in front of the camera on my own, without having to ask someone else to be patient while I tried to figure out how I wanted to wear my hair or what I wanted to do with my hands.
I’m in pictures with my kids. When I was working on this self-portrait project my kids were itching to get in front of the camera with me. While one kid stood behind the camera giving me (unique) posing directions, Birdy cantered off to her bedroom, slowly dragging all her stuffed animals into my room and climbing up into my lap. Are they the best pictures I’ve ever taken? No. But am I so glad to have captured these moments? Absolutely.
My kids love getting in front of the camera too. I’ve left my tripod and camera out a few times, only to discover several gems on my card when I download the images. With a tripod and an inexpensive remote that lets them take pictures without using the shutter button, I’ve loved discovering some favorite candid moments of my kids on my camera.
Working with a tripod takes some getting used to. Figuring out angles and focal points and the best settings to get crisp, clear shots is something I’m continuing to work on. Those photos with Birdy weren’t perfectly focused, but I love them just the same. And I’m so glad to be able to get over my silly fears and get in front of the camera more often.
I’m so excited to be able to offer such an awesome tripod giveaway to all of you today! MeFOTO, whose tripod I use and love is offering a giveaway of their MeFOTO Build-Your-Own Tripod ($249 value) AND Sidekick360 ($30 value) to make shooting with your smartphone possible, too!
The MeFOTO is sturdy and easy to use and best of all collapses into a compact case that makes it easy to take on-the-go. And, hello? You can design your own! Their online tool for building your own tripod is so easy to use and has tons of color options. And my awesome friends at MeFOTO have also thrown in a sidekick tripod as well. It gives you the option to use as a standalone tripod for your smartphone, or as an adapter to use your smartphone with your tripod. And it comes in the same fantastic colors.
Leave a comment below to enter. Contest ends Monday, August 10th. Winner will be notified via email and announced in the comments! Good luck!
** Giveaway is CLOSED. Congratulations to the winner : Elise!**
Special thanks to MeFOTO for sending me a tripod to test out for this post. All opinions are honest and my own.