No Tripods Allowed at Brooklyn Botanic Garden? Platypod Ultra to the Rescue!
By Larry Tiefenbrunn, MD
CEO and Inventor, Platypod
In between patients, Platypods and conferences (Photoshop World, Out of Chicago and NECCC), Platypod co-owner (and my wife) Mina and I decided to take a break and travel over to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. Although I grew up in New York, I don't recall ever having been there before!
We had a wonderful time gazing at flowers, bonsai trees and cactuses not to mention strolling the beautiful grounds. Of course I could not help but take a few pictures. Since tripods were not allowed, I tested the waters by mounting my Nikon D 800 on a stanchion right opposite the guard in the admission station. He was looking right at me and did not say a word. I figured I was safe to use it inside. Without a tall tripod, I had to do most flower shots hand-held, but then, off the beaten path in a rather shaded area, we came upon this little stream which just seemed very peaceful to me. That serenity was just what we were looking for that day.
I tried framing the shot wide-angle and it just did not work. To try and achieve a successful photo with my 90 mm Tamron lens (great for shooting macros also) I really needed to stop down to f/32 in order to achieve a reasonable depth of field. At ISO 200 (in my old D800 this gives me the best dynamic range and least amount of noise) the exposure called for 1/5 of a second shutter speed, difficult to handhold even with image stabilization, as this scene had an incredible amount of detail. I quickly wrapped my Platypod Ultra strap around the log railing and slid Ultra’s open arms right onto the strap and tightened it.
I exposed several shots in horizontal and vertical positions and found the upright shots slightly more appealing. A little post processing in Photoshop, and here's what I got: