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Tutorial: Using a Remote to Keep the Crying at Bay

While it’s obvious to think of using a remote trigger when photographing long exposures, that’s not the only time they come in handy. Every once in a while, I’m asked to photograph family sessions for neighbors and friends. After dealing with crying and whiny kids, I realized that a remote would be the perfect solution!

By utilizing a remote, I can goof around with the kids, play with some toys and make them laugh instead of being stuck behind my camera the whole time.

You don’t need a complicated remote to make this work, but it’s nice to have one that is well-tested before you use it in a professional setting. For me, the Vello FreeWave Plus Wireless Remote Shutter Release has been the perfect solution (check out my review here!)

If you use a wireless remote like this, simply attach your camera to your tripod, setup the remote and go to work. No extra steps. I’d recommend a heavier duty tripod, though, to ensure that it won’t get accidentally bumped and fall to the ground.

This trick can work on dogs too, just make sure you substitute dog treats for the toddler toys.

What if Kids Aren’t My Thing?

Believe it or not, using a remote can work in a corporate environment as well. If you’re shooting a business lifestyle portrait, and you want to be engaging with your subject, you typically don’t want them looking directly at your camera lens. Instead, stand off-center from them, have them turn slightly towards you, and shoot away with your remote.

Using this technique will make for a more engaging and interesting photograph.

Perfect for Products

Have a tight squeeze with your camera on your tripod, surrounded by lighting equipment? This is the perfect situation to use a remote.

For me, I use this when I want an overhead shot of food that isn’t easily obtainable. I setup my tripod, lighting gear and everything else I need. I connect my remote receiver, and start shooting. It allows me to obtain angles of photos that otherwise would have been super difficult to shoot.

Conclusion

A lot of camera accessories add extra bulk to your bag, and to your workflow. But a remote trigger is a must. It can help you get some super engaging photographs with your subject, different angles and more, all of which lead to better photographs.

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