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Get a Grip

By Mike Pasini, Editor
Imaging Resource Newsletter

"Find a safe comfortable way to handle your digicam and practice it."

The very first thing to learn about your camera is one of the toughest. How to hold it.

With some designs, it's obvious. With others, there's a different grip for shooting than for changing batteries.

First, find the lens. That's one place you don't ever want to touch. So when you've found it, look for the other place you don't want to touch: the LCD monitor. You've got better things to do than clean fingerprints off those two things.

That will help you find a way to grip the camera that will let you actually use it to take pictures. Find that undocumented one-handed shooting grip assumed by the design. Pick the camera up that way and get in the habit of holding it that way.

It would be great if this safe grip worked for removing the storage card and the batteries, but the more compact your digicam, the less likely that is to be the case. So find a safe, comfortably, repeatable grip for removing stuff from the camera.

Train yourself like a highwire trapeze artist to only pick up the camera in one of those two ways.

Which means you have to learn how to unsheath it from the case or your fanny pack and put it back in, too.

You may feel silly (we always do), but it's worth it. Find a safe comfortable way to handle your digicam and practice it. After a little repetition, handling your camera will be second nature. Which means you can concentrate on your subject instead of your camera.

This article is reprinted from The Imaging Resource Digital Photography Newsletter,
Beginner's Flash Column, published July 28, 2000