By Dave Williams
Travel Photographer @ capturewithdave.com
I’ve heard from a few places now that using a Platypod is ideal for a city, and I have to agree! Their portability and versatility make them ideal for getting effective shots whilst saving on weight and space whilst navigating cities worldwide.
I recently took a trip to Chicago to experience the Windy City for the first time, and windy it certainly was! Having my Platypod Ultra which takes seconds to set up rather than having to fumble around with numb fingers trying to set-up a traditional tripod was a life saver, and I’m not exaggerating!
On this trip I met up with KelbyOne member Kevin, who not only showed me a pretty awesome pizza but also helped me find a cool view of the city from North Beach. When we got there the temperature was low and the wind was pretty killer so having navigated the city in my typically lightweight style, thanks to Platypod. It was nice and simple getting the shots I wanted and needed. Kevin too had a Platypod Ultra but an altogether different setup – where I had a heavy D810 and 14-24mm lens weighing in at about 2kg or about 4.4 pounds, Kevin had a Canon EOS R and Canon 16-35mm lens coming in at about half that weight at 1.1 kg or 2.4 pounds.
I shot the Chicago cityscapes and elements using landscape photography principles. As such the use of a tripod helped maximise my photographic opportunities, allowing for longer exposures. The use of a Platypod has helped me achieve mobility and flexibility whilst shooting cities the past few years and you can see that here from my recent trip to Chicago.
Nobody enjoys carrying a tripod around all day, they are large, cumbersome and arduous. They are one of the most essential pieces of kit for a photographer but they can be replaced in most cases by the Platypod, and I love that!
Take a look at what I was able to do here at North Beach, Chicago. The ice in the shot above looks pretty cool, but it was constantly bouncing around in the swell of Lake Michigan. After taking this handheld shot I sat my camera on the ground, already mounted on my Platypod Ultra whilst shooting from my hand, and caught a long exposure around a minute long with a 10-stop ND filter. This blended all of that movement and created something rarely seen in a long exposure.
The best thing about using Platypod to shoot the city is the fact that when you’re done, your entire rig can sit on the table in the coffee shop! The same rig that shot the long exposures, the cityscapes, and the close ups. Using your Platypod, gives you the element that will make you stand out amongst the crowd of photographers in the city and give you the necessary edge to make your photos stand out too.