Tiny Tips 14: Hold your Camera Right

If you're using a dSLR, put your left hand below, supporting the base of the camera, with the index finger and thumb positioned to adjust focus/zoom. Support your left elbow with your chest and grip the camera body firmly with your right hand, positioning your right index finger above the shutter release.

The first rule of holding your camera is that it should be steady. This will ensure that you get sharper pictures in low-light situations and that your pictures are sharper in general.

How to Correctly hold a Camera?

  • If you’re using an interchangeable lens camera, place it in your hand, supporting the base of the camera. This hand will support the weight of the camera
  • Wrap your index finger and thumb around the lens, positioned to adjust the focus or zoom ring.
  • Support the elbow of that hand against your chest if needed.
  • Grip the camera body firmly, but lightly with your other hand.
  • Positioning your right index finger above the shutter release, ready to press it.

Posture is important

  • Stand firm and erect with your feet spread apart a bit.
  • Do not lean forward, as it will make your stance unsteady.
  • Standing straight and with good posture will also reduce strain on your back, especially if you’re carrying a lot of gear.

Following these tips will ensure that you are comfortable while you take your photographs and that your camera is held securely. Being comfortable will automatically ensure that you have less shake in your photographs.

Do you have other tips on how to hold your camera? Drop ’em in the comments.

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Susheel Chandradhas

Susheel Chandradhas

Susheel Chandradhas is a Product Photographer and Filmmaker based in India. He has been taking photographs (almost) all his life. He has a diploma and a bachelors degree in Visual Communication, where his classmates all believed that he would write a book on photography... Instead, he writes on this website (because - isn't a community more fun?).

His passions include photography, parkour, wide-angle lenses, blue skies, fire extinguishers, and fast computers.

In addition to writing for Beyond Photo Tips, Susheel is a staff writer for Fstoppers.com, and owns and runs ColoursAlive, a photography, and video production studio.

You can connect with Susheel on Twitter, Instagram, or LinkedIn.

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  1. Standing as suggested above also lets you shoot at lower shutter speeds and still get blur free shots. Using the above method I’ve managed consistent 1/15 – 1/8 second shutter speeds. With shake reduction lenses you could go even slower.

  2. Great tips! To add to that I’d suggest leaning against somthing solid whenever possible. Take the photo between breaths, after breathing out. Twisting the camera slightly (twisting the right hand forward, the left back) also adds a bit of stability to your grip and minimises small shaking movements.

    Finally, I’ve also seen photographers wrap their neck strap around their arm and under theirelbow, keeping it taut. This helps with stability in the same way twisting the camera does.

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