You all know that when you take handheld pictures at low shutter speeds (like 1/15th second on a 35mm lens) you do not get sharp pictures like this:
Actually. you can. I took that picture hand-held – holding the camera with only one hand! – at those very settings. And no, the lens is not a “VR” (Nikon) or “IS” (Canon) stabilized type.
So how did I do this? Other than of course having a rock-stead hand?
Just kidding about the hand. Here’s the first five pictures I took:
So how many sharp ones? One in five, and for me, that’s about what I get when I handhold the camera in one hand at half the lens length.
The point, of course, is that even with bad conditions like that, you’ll still get the odd accidentally sharp picture. If you need the picture to be sharp, shoot a lot. Click-click-click-click-click-click. It’s OK – sometimes you have to do it without a tripod even though you should be using one (and you know it!), and you’ll still get the odd sharp pictures even then.
(I’ll tell no-one if you don’t.)