Carrying a tripod to take photos while traveling can be daunting, especially if you have to walk around a little.
In situations like this, you can easily walk around with camera in hand and use your camera’s built-in image stabilization feature. You can take stable pictures with it, but a simple tripod cannot beat it.
Although you do your best to keep your camera steady, your photos may still be blurry if you don’t use a tripod.
But, There are alternatives! Some of these alternatives give you stability similar to a tripod but are useful in terms of ease of use and ease of portability. This article discusses the five best alternatives to using a tripod for photographers, as well as some tips and tricks on how to use them.
A monopod is a one-legged camera mount, and sometimes they’re even more useful than a traditional tripod. It’s easier to carry because it’s not as bulky as a tripod, takes less time to set up, and has multiple sections that you can simply fold up to make it even more compact.
They don’t cost that much either. If you are a sports photographer, wildlife photographer, or even a journalist, a monopod can come in great use to you. My advice is to use a carbon fiber monopod to keep the weight down and look for one with three or four foldable sections.
You can mount your camera on a monopod or use a tripod head. You can also use ball heads or uniquely designed monopod heads that allow you to quickly reposition the camera. Keep in mind that some monopods may not reach the desired height. So check the manufacturer’s specifications to make sure they can reach the height you want.
Some monopods even turn into a walking stick – perfect for hiking where you don’t want to carry both a monopod and a walking stick. In adventure photography, any device that has a dual purpose is great in our book.
Beanbag or sandbag
There are times when all you need to do is stabilize the lens and camera as no height is required. In such cases, you don’t need a mechanical device to place your camera on, and that’s where sandbags or bean bags come in.
Some of the bags can be emptied and carried in your camera bag, and some of them come with filling. For example, the Novoflex beanbag comes empty and you can fill it with sand, rice, buckwheat, other beans, or whatever else you think is appropriate in the field. The SafariSack is another great option.
If you are a bird photographer or a wildlife photographer, bean bags or sandbags may be the perfect tripod alternative for you. Some beanbags even come with connector plate accessories that can be used to mount a gimbal head on top. I recommend choosing a beanbag that can be emptied while trekking or traveling as it is easy to walk around with less weight.
This saves you the hassle of setting up, especially at lower angles. All you have to do is put your camera on the bag and take photos in a stable and stable environment.
Gorilla Pod is one of the most efficient and effective tripod alternatives. Yeah, yeah, I hear you say it’s essentially a tripod. However, it has flexible legs and is light enough to fit in places where conventional tripods cannot be placed. Joby Gorilla Pod is by far the best-known brand for Gorilla Pods and their standard product weighs only about 400 grams.
It offers classic support with its flexible legs that you can manipulate to attach to many places like lights, branches, lamp posts, etc. You can also put it on a tree, on uneven surfaces, clip it around a pole, or anything you come across while shooting. The largest Gorilla Pod can carry up to 5 kilograms and its ball head ensures versatility and safety.
If you have a camera and lens configuration (such as a heavy telephoto lens) that weighs more than five kilograms, using a gorilla pod is not advisable. This is the only downside to this tripod alternative, but you can always choose the other options from this list. At the same time, its extremely portable and compact design makes it the best tripod alternative for people with a light camera.
Sometimes you cannot get out of your car to take photos due to cloudy weather conditions or rain. The best solution is to use a window mount that allows you to fix your camera while staying undercover in these situations. Traditionally, window camera mounts have come with rubber pads and a swivel head to protect both your camera and your vehicle from possible damage.
Additionally, if your camera setup is difficult, you can use the window mounts that are located above the car door. All you have to do is roll down the windows of your car door and attach them to the door frame. It protects your window pane from damage and gives you stability to take sharp and high quality photos. Check out the Above Car Window Mount, it’s a simple and inexpensive alternative to other options.
Your body and the environment
All of the alternatives mentioned above involve something to carry and put in your pocket before setting out on the photo hunt. But what if you’re in the field without a tripod or one of those alternatives? In this case, you can use your own body and surroundings to stabilize your camera. You heard it right and it works because sometimes the simplest is the best.
Use your body
Using your body for this purpose is not complicated and all you have to do is grab your camera with your left hand. You can do this by grasping the lens or by placing your hand under the camera body and stabilizing your body against a tree or wall.
Your general posture also plays an important role. By tucking your arms into your body and holding your camera closer to your torso, you can stabilize your camera as well.
Use the environment
On the other hand, you can easily find any object with a flat surface, e.g. B. a pile of bricks, tree stump, bench, etc. You can also use your camera’s strap by wrapping it around your hand or arm. This technique works best when you are taking photos with a slightly slower shutter speed. Using the environment as an alternative to a tripod is just as effective as using a tripod. Make sure you put a soft cloth under your camera to prevent damage.
Before you decide on any of these options Alternatives to a tripodMake sure you know the weight of your camera and lens. Just grab your camera body and heaviest lens and weigh them. This way you can find the most suitable option for you that will meet all of your unique needs.
I hope this article will help you take sturdier, sharper, higher quality photos the next time you go hunting for photos.