While most picture taking calls for a quick point-and-click, delaying the shutter by a few seconds can allow you to get a clearer view—or actually get in the shot yourself. If you aren’t sure when (or how) to use your camera’s self-timer setting, here’s the scoop.
Pull out your manual.
Your camera’s manual will tell you how to set up the timer. Most cameras have a button with a clock-like icon for their self-timers, and allow for several different self-timer options: a longer delay to allow you to get into the picture, or a shorter delay for the times when you’re using the function to avoid camera shake. You can check out the manuals for Kodak cameras here.
Get into the action.
Self-timers are most often used to allow the photographer to get into the shot. As you’re arranging the rest of the group, make sure you leave a gap that you can easily slide into for the shot. Get the camera in focus, make sure everyone’s in the frame, then hit the self-timer and hurry over to your spot. Consider counting the seconds out loud so everyone knows when to expect the flash.
Ensure a clear shot at night.
Nighttime settings usually use slower shutter speeds to ensure stronger photographs—as long as you can stay perfectly still to avoid image blur. By setting up the shot with a tripod, then using the self-timer, you’ll ensure that your camera won’t shake when the picture’s being taken—and you’re practically guaranteed a great shot.
Keep the landscape steady.
Photographers generally use slower settings when they’re taking landscape shots to get the richest, most detailed images. Using a tripod and a self-timer keeps the camera perfectly still, to ensure you get exactly the image you want.