Ladders play an unrecognised part in a lot of photos. Sometimes, all it takes to make a bad shot into a good one is to change the angle and perspective of the photo. This can A tall ladder with a camera fixed to the top.mean getting lower down or higher up to take a better photo. Wedding photographers often have a ladder with them so they can capture special moments from a higher angle than the guests. This approach can give an intimate feel to the images that you wouldn’t get had they been taken at eye level. Ladders also come in handy when taking formal group shots, as the extra height allows the photographer to get more people in frame and play with the composition. Ugly backgrounds can be cropped out of the shot by getting higher up and using more of the ground as a backdrop, just as nice ground-level features (lakes etc.) can be purposefully included in the shot by using the ladder to get that height advantage. Special ladders designed for use in photographic studios are available and these typically have non-marking wheels and foot tips so no damage or marking happens to the white floor. These step ladders fold completely flat, but have wide rungs for extra stability, which you need if you are up a ladder with a camera in front of your face. Wheels on the step side of the ladder allow you to tip and wheel the ladder towards you with one hand (the other hand is holding the expensive camera!) and move it around the studio for different shots. These ladders are not only useful for portraits, but they are indispensable for product photography. Product photography often means taking the picture on a plain white background so it can be cut out of the background completely. If you can get right above the object on a white table or lightbox then there is far less post production work to do and you will get a series of identically lit and composed images.

Fashion and Ladders

Fashion photographers have used ladders as props for photoshoots in the past, possibly inspired by their own use of ladders. While set dressing (technically the work of a stylist, although some photographers do their own styling) the ladder is used to hang backdrops and set the scene. While the shoot is in progress, the photographer might want to get a different angle, and use the ladder to look down on the scene, or just gain a slight height advantage. Press photographers also use ladders to ensure they can always see their subject. When official announcements are made there is often a bank of photographers waiting to get a picture of the speaker, and the people at the back use ladders to make sure they get a clear frame, without other photographers and journalists in the way. These ladders have to be incredibly lightweight and freestanding so they can be carried and used anywhere, so a short step-ladder is the ideal choice for this function. Some of the most well known media images of the last century were the result of the photographer having gained that extra height to get the perfect angle. Corey Rich attached to a ladder taking pictures of rock climbers.Adventure photographer Corey Rich used a folding extension ladder to take pictures of rock climbers on cliff faces without actually being up against the rock himself. He set the ladder up perpendicular to the rock face and anchored it to the cliff, thereby making a platform he could stand on for a view onto the rock face. From this vantage point he could get the same effect as if he was in a helicopter, for far less expense. His set up is not for the faint hearted, but as a seasoned rock climber and thrill seeker, he was in a position to use his skills to get the best shot.