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How do you hold a camera? (maybe silly question)

Posted 04/01/2009 - 12:41 Link
Out of curiosity, how do you hold a camera when taking a picture in a 'portrait' orientation?

Maybe it's a silly question, but it stroke me while I went through the K20D manual. On a picture explaining the way a user is expected to hold a camera while taking pictures, (page 54, Basic Shooting Operation / Holding the camera) the person holds the camera shutter release button up, mode dial down (so for right hand goes up, left hand down). I noticed that usually my wife holds her camera in that way. I hold a camera the other way round - left hand up, right hand down (so the shutter release button is down, mode dial up).

Is it advised to hold the camera this way or another?
Don't ask me if I'm bored - I hoped for a sunny weather today and it's all dark, cloudy, grey, cold and moisty outside.
Kind regards,
Michal R. Hoffmann
K20D, DA 16-45mm, A 50mm F/1:1.4, DA 55-300mm; flash Pentax AF240Z
Posted 04/01/2009 - 13:22 Link
I hold it as per the manual, but I am left handed, so not sure if I am being strange or not, it feels natural to me.
For the love of all things photogenic!

Pentax K20D | Pentax SMC II DA ALII 18 - 55 | Sigma 400mm AF f5.6 | Fisheye wanted for play time!

Centon K100 | Centon 50 / 1.7 | Centon 70 - 210 /4.0 - 5.6 (for my now retired film SLR).
Edited by rpk20d: 04/01/2009 - 13:22
Daniel Bridge
Posted 04/01/2009 - 13:37 Link

I hold it the same as your wife, in fact I have the vertical grip, so I usually hold it the 'third' way. But without the grip, I find it much more comfortable to put my right hand over the camera.

K-3, a macro lens and a DA*300mm...
Posted 04/01/2009 - 14:06 Link
Right hand down and the same on a tripod...I am left eyed ....John
Daniel Bridge
Posted 04/01/2009 - 14:11 Link
Well, I'm left eyed too...

I think I use right hand over because it allows your left hand to stay in a similar position to when you're shooting landscape format. It just doesn't feel right holding it the other way for me.

K-3, a macro lens and a DA*300mm...
Posted 04/01/2009 - 14:27 Link
I hold my K200 the same way up as you do, it just feels more natural that way. I usually press the shutter release button with my thumb. Was hoping to go out on Bridlington's North Beach this afternoon, but it's s-o-o-o cold. An afternoon to huddle indoors by the fire instead. Bored? Tell me about it! Not only is it too cold to want to go out, my partner is watching footie on TV.... sigh! At least the Pentax Forum is always good for passing a pleasant hour or two.
Posted 04/01/2009 - 15:05 Link
Right handed, right eyed, and right hand down
George Lazarette
Posted 04/01/2009 - 15:08 Link
Do whatever seems natural for you.

Looking through other people's pictures, I am amazed at how many use both ways - right up, and also right down.

Keywords: Charming, polite, and generally agreeable.
Posted 04/01/2009 - 17:44 Link
George Lazarette wrote:
I am amazed at how many use both ways - right up, and also right down.

Yep I'm one of those, right eyed and right handed.
I've no idea why or when I use it - Right up or right down
With a monopod it's right hand up, I know that I do that so that I can look with my left eye also but now I wonder why I don't do that all the time.

I'm a mystery to myself now
Comment Image

K10D, K5
DA* 16-50, DA* 50-135, D-FA 100 Macro, DA 40 Ltd, DA 18-55
Posted 04/01/2009 - 20:37 Link
Hmm.. one of those things you never think about until someone mentions it.

Right handed, right eyed, and I hold it both ways, depending on something I suppose.. never thought about it. I do know that I have to rotate images both ways when sorting ready for PP. I use a wraparound wrist strap, so my hand will be in the same place regardless, 'cos I don't have the option to move it.

Sitting here in front of the PC, I 'pretended' to hold a camera in portrait, and both orientations seem perfectly comfy.. perhaps I'm just strange..



"Make your hands respond to what your mind demands." Jesse James

Best wide-angle lens? Two steps backward. Look for the 'ah-ha'. Ernst Haas
Posted 04/01/2009 - 22:48 Link
Ha, the results are interesting then
I'm right-handed, right-eyed too. I think the reason I hold the camera that way (right-down) is that I had my first SLR (it was Russian Zenith 12XP, fully manual, but with light-metering TTL system) when I was 14 as far as I remember, so it was quite heavy for me. Holding the camera with the right hand down I can rest my arm / elbow on my chest; this stabilises my hand and the camera.

Good to know I'm not the only one
Kind regards,
Michal R. Hoffmann
K20D, DA 16-45mm, A 50mm F/1:1.4, DA 55-300mm; flash Pentax AF240Z
Posted 04/01/2009 - 23:07 Link
I'm fairly ambidextrous, write left handed, played guitar right handed, eat with knife and fork right handed but use a spoon left handed, can use most hand tools in either hand.....

......and you guessed it, I'm one of those oddballs that uses the camera both ways in portrait and not even aware that I'm doing it, and like Stefan its always right hand up with a monopod
My Names Alan, and I'm a lensaholic.
My PPG link
My Flckr link
Posted 04/01/2009 - 23:08 Link
take a look at my pic.
just keep snapping,

CAMERAS = k200d + battery grip.
nikon d300 + battery grip.
LENSES = tamron aspherical DII 18-200mm f3.5/6.3,
nikon 18-200mm afs vr f3.5/5.6 g dx
sigma 150-500mm apo dg hsm os
sigma 170-500mm apo dg
FLASH = samsung sef36pzf flash + more.
Posted 04/01/2009 - 23:48 Link
On a second thought - now I see the benefits of right hand up position. I still can rest my (left) arm against my chest, but probably it's easier to manipulate front / rear dials and my left eye is not obscured by my left hand. The drawback is the right hand wrist position. Have to try it out anyway
Kind regards,
Michal R. Hoffmann
K20D, DA 16-45mm, A 50mm F/1:1.4, DA 55-300mm; flash Pentax AF240Z
Posted 05/01/2009 - 00:42 Link
I tend to hold it Right Hand Down - it feels more natural. Right hand up means the controlling hand (right) is twisted whereas the support hand (left) can find an easy position.

However, I do occasionally use Right Hand UP - such as earlier today when I needed the flash to come from the left - tried both ways and the left gave better illumination.
K20D, *istD, MZ-S, Super-A, ME Super, MX
DA* 16-50, DA* 50-135, DA* 300,
DA 50-200, FA 24-90, FA 20-35,
M 400-600, A 50 f1.4, A 28 f2.8, A 70-210, M 35-80, M 50 f1.7
A x2S teleconverter and a few others ...

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