A soft shutter release is a small button-like accessory that attaches to the top of your camera’s shutter button to improve its feel. Many photographers like the extra bit of height it provides as this gives them greater control over the shutter button, enabling them to shoot with bit more precision. And of course, there’s an aesthetic element to it all, as soft releases let you add an individual touch to your camera.
These soft shutter releases are manufactured by Artisan Obscura; a small company that operates out of Englewood, Colorado in the US. Formed in 2013 by two friends with a shared love of woodwork and photography, Artisan Obscura aims to provide something a bit more bespoke than the mass-produced Chinese soft releases prevalent on eBay. You’ll pay a bit more for them, of course, but if you want to treat yourself to something special then Artisan Obscura manufactures what has to be the most stylish and bespoke range of soft releases going.
The Artisan Obscura soft release collection is divided into two main categories: screw-in and stick-on releases. A range of hotshoe covers in similar finishes is also available should you want to personalise your camera even more. There are currently more than a dozen types of natural wood to choose from, with plenty of unusual and striking hardwoods such as Desert Ironwood, Bloodwood and Buckeye Burl. In addition to plain natural wood, you’ll find a number of patterned and engraved releases, along with mother-of-pearl and metal ones. If you’ve got £52 ($70) spare then you can even order one in hand-hammered silver. Releases come in two sizes (11mm and 14mm) with a choice of either a concave or convex top. Which is right for you will depend on the type and size of your shutter button, the size of your fingers and, of course, your personal taste.
Price: £20 (excluding shipping)