Up until now, I’ve been photographing deadwood, freehand. But after a more critical review of these photos, I’ve decided that using a tripod enables more consistent high quality photos. There are two reasons for this. First, using a tripod makes it easier to compose the scene. Looking at the live view on a tripod is much different than looking through the viewfinder while holding the camera. It’s really much easier to notice any flaws with the angle of view, or the distractions “hiding” in the periphery. Second, the technical quality of the image is better since I can use a remote shutter release, allowing me to set a low ISO, longer exposures, and higher f stops. Manual focusing is also easier since I can more precisely select the key focus point for best depth-of-field, and magnify that portion 10x for critical focusing.
You can see my most recent work (appearing in descending order of date taken) at my on-line gallery.