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Tips & Tricks

6 Different Basic Clamps For Photo and Video

By Hanssie on December 19th 2015

clamps-slanted-lensWhile not as glamorous as a new Sony A7R II or the latest Zeiss Otus, clamps are something many of us use daily in our work. From holding up backdrops to making sure the model’s dress fits perfectly, clamps are a much used, underappreciated tool in our bags and in our studios.

In this video from our friends at The Slanted Lens, Jay P. Morgan talks about his favorite clamps and how he uses them. The first clamp he shows us is the most common and can be purchased for a few dollars at a hardware store. The A-Clamp comes in a few different sizes and can be used for just about everything. Jay P. uses the small ones to clip his gels on his lights; I’ve used the small and medium ones to pull clothes tighter on a model so it fits better. The A-Clamp is super versatile, so get yourself a bunch just to have on hand.



The second clamp he discusses is the Super Clamp. It looks more complex and is a bit more pricy. To me, it looks like a dinosuar mouth ready to bite down on whatever you want held like a backdrop pole or GoPro. Then Jay P. discusses a few clamps I have never heard of or used before: the Cardellini, the C-Clamp, the platypus, the Kupo, and the chain vice grip. He shows you how he uses each of them and some of the pros and cons of each as well. At the end of the video, Jay P. recommends that if you’re just starting your clamp kit, you should begin with ten a-clamps, three of the super clamps, and one platypus and why.

It’s an informative 7 minutes on something everyone generally overlooks, but everyone always uses. You can find and purchase an assortment of the above clamps and other different types of clamps here.


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Hanssie is a Southern California-based writer and sometimes portrait and wedding photographer. In her free time, she homeschools, works out, rescues dogs and works in marketing for SLR Lounge. She also blogs about her adventures and about fitness when she’s not sick of writing so much. Check out her work and her blog at Follow her on Instagram

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Kurk Rouse

    I have some cheap dollar clamps from the dollar store, they work ok for now , but i know it some point i need to get something more sturdy.

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  2. Joseph Ford

    Interesting assortment of Clamps. I have limited experience with the wide diversity of clamps, and was lost after the super clamp. I love the recommendations at the end, always helpful to know what to get first.

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