Are You Holding Your Camera the “Wrong” Way? (VIDEO)

Ever since she started making YouTube videos, professional photographer Irene Rudnyk has received comments from some viewers who say she’s holding her camera “wrong.” In particular, the commenters have criticized how Rudnyk holds her DSLR when shooting in portrait or vertical mode.

In Rudnyk’s case, she holds her Canon DSLR in portrait/vertical mode with the grip and shutter button facing down. According to some critics, that’s an awkward way to hold a camera, providing little support at the bottom for the heavy pro DSLR and lens set-up.

So, Rudnyk decided to investigate and in the below video titled “I’ve Been Holding My Camera Wrong?” she shares her findings, noting that there’s no real “right or wrong” way to hold a DSLR, and that preference often depends on gender.

Many female photographers, Rudnyk learned, including such well-known pros as Annie Leibovitz and Lara Jade, hold their DSLRs like her, with the grip/shutter pointing down.

“That makes me believe that a lot of women prefer holding their cameras a different way than men do,” Rudnyk says. “I’ve definitely seen this kind of pattern where women prefer holding the camera closer to them like this, and men like to kind of put their arms up like that.”

While, obviously, this is not a scientific study, and there are many male and female photographers who hold their DSLRs with the grip either up or down in vertical shooting, it’s interesting to see how photographers’ behaviors (and opinions) vary dramatically on something as simple as holding your camera.

And since Rudnyk is shooting with a rather heavy professional DSLR/lens combo, it makes you wonder if it also varies when shooting with a lighter mirrorless camera and lens? Either way, it’s a fun debate. Check out more thought-provoking and helpful photography videos on Rudnyk’s YouTube channel.

dtudor's picture

I hold my camera with the shutter button at the top. I use back button autofocus, which would be very uncomfortable the way you hold the camera. Also, even if I used the shutter button to autofocus, my wrist has to bend uncomfortably to press the shutter button. But whatever works for each individual is fine with me, lol!

gingernemo's picture

If you shooting 8 hours straight in the studio like I do with the big body, right hand always in the same correlation as you shooting horizontal,that, to me it is right hand (elbow) low. If I shooting small body with no battery grip I still shooing right hand low, my elbow can sit on my hipbone with better stability. So for the right elbow hang in the mid air seems tiresome to me, and if you play golf you know what we called that ;)

bhweber's picture

I do not think it matters how you hold the camera as long as you do it the same way every time. When my wife uses my heavy camera, 1DS III, she shoots some vertical with the shutter on the top and some with it on the bottom. It is very random. It makes it hard to post process as I have to turn the images separately.