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A tripod is essential for still-life photography work. Yes, it is sometimes possible to select a shutter speed fast enough to allow the use of a hand-held camera, but use a tripod anyway. Images will be sharper and crisper as a result. The process of setting up a tripod also causes the photographer to consider more carefully the best camera angle. Move around the subject in each plane to see how the composition changes. vary the height from which the subject is seen. Don't just shoot from a normal standing position. Try viewing the subject at table-top level and also from a bird's-eye perspective. Once the ideal angle has been found, the camera can then be left static while elements of lighting or composition are adjusted. However, never allow a static camera be an excuse for lazy habits that stifle creativity.

Before releasing the shutter, using a remote release to avoid any camera movement, check that there are no unwanted shadows cast across the set-up. Lighting stands and even the photographer's own shadow may sometimes cause problems.

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