Portable changing room to prevent camera shake

Discussion in 'General Gear Talk' started by 01Ryan10, Oct 9, 2017.

  1. 01Ryan10

    01Ryan10 Founding Member

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    Anyone use one out in the field to protect your camera/tripod from heavy winds and shake? A few of my sessions at Convict Lake had some really strong winds, and many of my photos came out blurry due to wind shake. I'm thinking the best way to mitigate that is a portable changing room. I'd probably look silly, but at least I'd have sharper images. :D

    They fold up small, and they're lightweight.

    https://www.amazon.com/Sportneer-Po...563918&sr=8-3&keywords=portable+changing+room
     
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  2. JimFox

    JimFox Moderator
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    Ha ha, it does sound silly, but yeah, that might work! :)

    Most people will use the hook on bottom of their tripod and hang a heavy backpack.

    Myself, when it's windy, I will usually put one hand on the tripod column and lean onto it a bit putting my weight on it. That will steady it for sharp photos. Or I have shot behind my jeep, letting the jeep be a wind break for me.

    But there are times when it just gets so windy, it's just time to pack it up. One of the considerations is if there is any grasses, brush, trees in the image where they are moving so fast, that even if the camera is made to be steady, they are moving so much, that to get a fast enough shutter speed that will freeze them sharp, means you are shooting up at ISO 3200 or so, which is something we normally don't want to do unless shooting at night.

    Jim
     
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  3. Kyle Jones

    Kyle Jones Moderator

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    Yeah - I had some shots at Gullfoss in Iceland that felt like I was in a tornado. My tripod would have blown over if I hadn't held it down. I pushed down on the tripod and fired off multiple exposures hoping something would be sharp. Worked OK. I doubt I'd ever deal with the changing room...
     
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  4. AlanLichty

    AlanLichty Moderator

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    What's going to hold the changing room down while you shoot? I have done more than a couple of shoots in strong winds and the tactics Jim described have been my go to solutions - hang a backpack on the tripod and use one hand to firmly hold the tripod while shooting. For most of those sessions the changing tent would be harder to hold down than my camera/tripod.

    Shooting in strong winds is limiting already since as Jim described any vegetation is moving a lot and necessitates fast shutter speeds. Not highly conducive to using ND filters to smooth out lake waters.
     
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  5. 01Ryan10

    01Ryan10 Founding Member

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    Well...I noticed the issue on my Convict Lake trip. I was shooting at 130mm on my 70-200. I had my pack hanging from the tripod hook, but when my exposure times are seconds and not fractions thereof, I would get camera shake. I think the shake was due more to the long lens acting as a sail more so than the tripod shaking. Add to the fact that I'm shooting at 130mm, and the photos become soft. I was too far away to see any real tree or shrub movement, but I did notice on many of my pics the outline of the mountains were soft. Now...I was able to get some great sharp pics from timing shots in between strong gusts, but I'm looking at ways to mitigate long lens shake on long exposure times.

    Perhaps an umbrella blocking the lens from wind? This may be a great alternative considering you can get the umbrella really close to the lens and even past the front element to the side where the focal length is too narrow to see an umbrella.
     
  6. AlanLichty

    AlanLichty Moderator

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    I get the same sail effect from my 100-400mm lens but I generally avoid trying to the long lens shots when things get gusty. It's hard enough to keep that lens steady at 400mm (or 800mm w/2x doubler) with no wind at all think less of when gusts are tossing it around.

    If you had a bottom on that changing tent it might be a solution since your feet could anchor it but without one it has the feel of a one armed wall paper hanger. We might have fun watching of course :D
     
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  7. 01Ryan10

    01Ryan10 Founding Member

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  8. Jeffrey

    Jeffrey Supporting Member

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    My thoughts are that the changing room (I have one, being a large format shooter as well) will act like a little parachute and make matters worse. When I've encountered heavy wind, I use the tripod low with legs retracted (if the comp allows) and hold it down steady and hard with my hands. Seeking a shorter shutter speed is helpful. If you've got a sturdy (read: expensive carbon fiber import) tripod, you'll be fine in most wind.
     
  9. JimFox

    JimFox Moderator
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    I use an umbrella when it’s raining or snowing to help keep the from element of the lens clean from water drops. The hardest time I have to use it, is when it’s windy. I have had umbrellas ruined from the wind, most of them are really made pretty cheaply to keep the weight and price down. I have bought the best ones on the market, and they still have a hard time lasting in the wind.

    It’s certainly something for you to try, but it could be case where you run out of hands, using one to hold the tripod steady, using one hand to hold an umbrella to stop the lens from moving, and then maybe use your foot to press your remote release?

    I think you might just have to accept there are limits to the amount of wind we can shoot in. Or you have to just Time your shots between gusts.

    Jim
     
  10. Jeffrey

    Jeffrey Supporting Member

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    Yeah, for wind that requires a two handed grip, I use the shutter delay timer and then grab and hold down the legs.
     
  11. Jameel Hyder

    Jameel Hyder Well-Known Member

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    One thing i tried once and worked well for me was to use tent stakes and rope to hold down he tripod. The rope makes an A shape between the two stakes and the hook on the tripod. Hanging the bag can make things worse if the bag swings on the hook.
     
  12. 01Ryan10

    01Ryan10 Founding Member

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    Yeah....You know what I'm going to try...a rope hanging from the hook and me standing on the rope pulled tight.
     
  13. JimFox

    JimFox Moderator
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    Totally true Jameel. If one doesn't get that hanging bag to where it's actually planted on the ground, it can swing and cause more movement.

    Jim
     
  14. JimFox

    JimFox Moderator
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    Hmmm, now that might work Ryan.
     
  15. 01Ryan10

    01Ryan10 Founding Member

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    Well...it will probably provide extreme tripod stabilization; however, long lenses will still "shake" the camera in heavier wind gusts.

    As I'm getting more and more into Landscape photography, I just don't want to be somewhere on a windy day and cannot get a sharp image due to winds. I suppose the times this may happen are rare...idk.

    <---Landscape noob
     
  16. MonikaC

    MonikaC Supporting Member

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    I use mirror lock-up and press straight down on the top of the camera body, try to wait between gusts & don't use a lens hood. I was able to get tack sharp images at 600mm shooting the lava on the Big Island that way. I couldn't wait between gusts there as I had to shoot when the steam cleared. RRS now makes a long lens stabilization device.
     

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