It’s rare that I step up on my soap box about gear… after all to each their own.  But this one is just a pet peeve as it causes so many potential problems.

The lens hood doesn’t point this way when the lens is out of your camera bag!


  • Hoods are reversed when packing the lens into a lens pouch or for shipping.  This makes it more compact.
  • Turn the lens hood around to provide physical protection to the front of your lens. This can minimize damage from drops, bumps, or running into things.
  • Mounting the lens hood forward also cuts down on unwanted lens flares that can strip a shot of detail and wash out the frame.
  • Turning the lens hood around also makes it easier to see and operate the manual controls on your lens. (Thanks Robert M for pointing that out).

Public service announcement over.  Get the most from your gear.


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Join the conversation! 20 Comments

  1. you’d think for shooting a ff, he’d know that by now – assuming it’s one of the full frame bodies, sans flash

  2. I photograph a lot of high school athletics, and I see this ALL the time. I just shake my head in disbelief.

  3. Reblogged this on garyjimenez's Blog and commented:
    I have to agree with this blog, but at the same time I have to admit to being like this guy on occasion. On a recent shoot I had my camera on my tripod while shooting the sun rise. I was out with a couple of friends and the morning was beautiful. I set my tripod down, not paying as much attention as I should. Of course the ground was uneven and my camera was pointing in a direction without a leg directly in front of it. Gravity took over, timberrrrrrr slooooow motion noooooooooo. Clank. Silence. Worry sets in…. Picked up my camera…. Dusted it off…. Slowly pressed the shutter button, click-click. Whew. Lens was good camera was good. Lens saved by the hood. So yeah don’t be like that guy.

  4. One of of the things that I like about your writing is that you don’t make fun of people for making mistakes. This post is the only exception that I remember.

    It’s probably a very good assumption that Photofocus readers know what a lens hood is for.

  5. if for no other reason you cant manual focus this way. all the other reasons are of course also valid.

  6. I’m not sure what’s more embarrassing – the subject of the article or the fact someone could be bothered to raise it. Of all the things to write about…

    • Sorry to annoy you Drew. I guess in the process of putting out more than 1,000 pieces of free content in a year, we find ourselves revisiting the basics from time to time. But hey… that’s our right.

      The goal of the article was to make sure people knew that not using a lens hood
      A. can cause bad lens flares
      B Doesn’t protect the front of the lens
      C makes it hard to control the lens.

      And if everyone knows this… how come I see it on a daily basis?

  7. The only time I would be this guy is if I had a C-Pol filter on the lens but then I would probably take the hood off.

  8. Don’t judge the guy based on this picture. I always use the lens hood like that when using polarizer filter.

  9. I only shoot like this if I’m looking to get that lens flare look, which I do from time to time. Otherwise, I flip it the correct way or just leave it in the bag altogether.

  10. For the sake of the completion, I would like to add that some lens hoods block the focus assist light – I doubt this is the case with this camera/lens pair, but I do have to remove my Nikon 24/70 hood sometimes to get focus in low light. The light is partially blocked by the hood in that case…

  11. All I can guess is this photographer was not ready to take photos and just hurried to get the lens cap off. I say have your camera ready, all the time. And I agree use your equipment to the fullest to keep your lens, camera safe.

  12. ask to delete photos from this article. as well from this site and from other sites. I do not like what is being discussed is not the article, but the person on the photo!

    • I’m sorry I do not follow you… we are simply discussing the concept here. We’re not picking on the person.

      This photo is used for illustrative purposes. We’re not identifying the person or naming them. We do not show their face or any identifying information.

      The photo was made in public and we’re not licensing or selling it.

  13. Still, the person in the photo did not consent fo it to be used in this fashion. So would you be so kind as to find some other illustration?

    • The photo is made in a public location where no expectation of privacy is available.

      We do not identify the person in any way or name them.

      If we get the opportunity (or you’d like to provide replacements) we’ll update as time allows.

      BTW, to verify… can you tell me where and when this image was made?


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About Richard Harrington

Richard Harrington is the founder of RHED Pixel, a visual communications company based in Washington, D.C. He is the Publisher of Photofocus and Creative Cloud User as well as an author on Rich has authored several books including From Still to Motion, Understanding Photoshop, Professional Web Video, and Creating DSLR Video.


Gear, Opinion, Photography, Shooting


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