Wondering about monopods?
If you’re not, you should be. A monopod is a collapsible and portable single pole used to help you stabilize your photos and videos, and it’s a great accessory to have if you’re a shooter. Using a monopod can keep your footage from being too shaky, it gives your arms a break, and lets you be a lot more mobile than a tripod would.
Downside? It doesn’t stand up by itself. But, it is light and portable – a very useful tool to add stability to your shots when you’re shooting in crowded areas or in fast-paced environments.
They range in price – from $15 for the most basic monopod, to over $350 for a monopod with small bracing legs and a tilt head. You can also buy a basic monopod and spruce it up with different accessories, like a tilt head, or this tripod base designed specifically to add to a monopod.
How to mount your monopod:
- 1. Take the plate off the monopod
- 2. Attach the plate (firmly) to the bottom of your camera
- 3. Attach the camera to the monopod
- 4. Go ahead and double check that’s properly attached – you don’t want to lose your camera
- 5. Adjust the length of the monopod to suit the shot you want
- 6. Shoot away!
Modification: The Waist Pod
To create a “waistpod,” find a comfortable, adjustable strap to attach to your monopod. It can be from a piece of luggage (that’s what we used in this tutorial) or from your camera bag. It should have some sort of clip. You can also buy a shoulder brace or a chestpod (something like this), if you want to use more professional gear.
- 1. Attach the strap to the bottom of the monopod, then put the strap over your shoulder or around your neck.
- 2. Tuck the end of the monopod into your waist, with your camera held at chest level, supported by the monopod and the strap. It’s still not as stable as a tripod, but it gives you the additional stability of your body.
- 3. Adjust the length of the monopod or strap as needed.
When is a tripod better?
A monopod still isn’t quite as stable as a tripod. In environments where you’re using a very long exposure, like when you’re shooting photos at night, you’ll need a tripod to stabilize your shot. Also, there’s no need for a monopod in a very controlled or quiet environment. If you’re doing a sit-down interview or portrait photography, you will have the space and the time to set up and move around a tripod.
More information on monopods:
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