How to select the perfect tripod for food and product photography?
A tripod is a must-have tool if you want to venture into food and product photography. It is essential to shoot top shot images and stop motion videos. Tripods offer impressive stability. Selecting a tripod can be super daunting for many, owing to the sheer variety of choices and types available in the market. Choosing a tripod that caters to your needs and requirements is pivotal. The content you produce must look well-curated and professional. But which tripod should one invest in?
We at Boyeatsworld have penned down some of the finest tripods for food and product photography to simplify the process.
Why is a tripod necessary for photography?
There are three significant reasons why every photographer must get a tripod:
- A camera mounted on a tripod shoots sharper images.
Tripods stabilize your camera and eliminate the camera shake that your body might cause. A stable setup produces crisp photos even while shooting long exposure shots. It allows you to work on a low ISO and even use a slow shutter speed.
- Achieve compelling compositions and styling using tripods.
Great composition and styling are essential when working with food or product shots. It can get tedious to constantly change the setup, put down and pick up the camera while fixing the frame. Using a tripod will help you compose and set the frame quickly and get the shots efficiently.
- Tripods offer consistency and precision.
It is almost impossible to create consistent shots without the help of a tripod. Using a tape or marker to fix the tripod’s placement is a smart photography trick. That way, you would be able to get multiple images from the same spot.
What are some factors to consider before buying a tripod?
Tripods can be heavy or light, made of aluminium, and carbon fibre, with various parts and accessories.
Construction and portability
One of the deciding factors when buying a tripod is its weight. You should invest in equipment that is portable, lightweight, and easy to carry. However, tripods are usually heavy and take up space. So it is wise t choose one that suits you and your working style.
Modern and light tripods are manufactured using carbon fibre. They are highly stable, durable, and do not rust. Carbon fibre is undoubtedly the best material for a tripod. But, it comes with a premium price tag.
The next best option is aluminium. It weighs more than carbon fibre. Today, most of the cheaper tripods are manufactured using aluminium.
Regarding the total weight, select a tripod that weighs 2.3 kgs without the head mount. Generally, carbon fibre legs weigh approximately 1.3 to 1.8 kgs. Aluminium legs can weigh about 2.3 to 2.7 kgs. Another superb option is choosing a basalt lava tripod. They weigh and cost in between the other two variants.
Overhead lateral arm and L bracket
Selecting a tripod with a detachable L bracket and an overhead lateral arm is crucial for photography of this nature. Most food and product shots are usually flatlays or top shots, and you simply cannot pull off an entire shoot without this feature.
Should you buy a monopod or a tripod?
Monopods and tripods offer improved support than shooting handheld shots. They are similar in function but differ drastically.
A tripod is stable, while a monopod is more portable. A tripod has three legs. Whereas a monopod, as the name suggests, has only one leg. Either one of them might suit your working style better. That being said, you might want to use both in specific scenarios.
Now that you have a fair idea about the tools, let us look at some fantastic tripods that you can invest in:
- Amazon Basics Tripod
If you want to buy your first tripod, this is a superb buy. It’s nominally priced and does exactly what it is meant to. You can first experiment with this, and once you are proficient at using tripods, you can upgrade to a better tripod.
- Vanguard Tripod VEO 3+ 263CB
This is a premium, stable tripod that will last forever. It also comes with a built-in L bracket which is convenient.
- Manfrotto MK055XPRO3-BHQ2
Another brilliant tripod in the field of photography is Manfrotto. This Italian-made tripod is simply brilliant and the epitome of luxury.
To select the ideal tripod for food and product photography, you must experiment with multiple options. Get a real-time experience of how they feel, function, and look.
Using a tripod for your shoots might take some getting used to. But it will help you improve your food photography game so much that you will wonder why you did not invest in one earlier!