Creative Blurring Often Requires a Tripod

by Jim Zuckerman

Big Ben and Creative Motion
Big Ben and Creative Motion
© Jim Zuckerman
All Rights Reserved
A blurred picture like this one I shot in London is successful only if some parts of the image are sharp. It is the juxtaposition of the blurred bus in contrast to the tack-sharp background that makes this work.

My shutter speed was 1/6th of a second, and in this low-light environment of dawn, the only way to achieve a sharp background was to use a tripod. Don't think that, because your ultimate goal is a blurred image, you can get away without using the firm support of a tripod.

If your intention is to make the entire picture blurred, that's a different story. Then you can eliminate a tripod from the equation.

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Jim Z teaches many online courses at BetterPhoto's digital photography school, including Techniques of Natural Light Photography, Developing Your Creative Artistic Vision, and Perfect Digital Exposure. Also, he contributed to these how-to books: The BetterPhoto Guide to Creative Digital Photography and The BetterPhoto Guide to Photographing Light.

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