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Whats in the bag ?

Wed Apr 16, 2014, 3:34 PM
Photography gear, it is something that I think most photographers have a love/hate relationship with, mostly the hate is that one does not have the gear one wants already. :D

So here is what is in my bag, and why.

Camera: 

Nikon D800 - I could certainly have settled for a entry level camera had I not been shooting as much night photos as I do, and also that I work as a photographer being able to deliver high quality work is key.

Lenses:

Zeiss 15mm F2.8 Distagon - I had the Nikon 14-24 f2.8 and sold it to get this one, some might wonder why that is, one of the biggest reason is the hard stop infinity on the Zeiss, I do not have to worry about getting perfect focus in complete darkness anymore, and that is crucial when the aurora suddenly flares up while you are walking and have to get the gear ready quick. The other reasons is the quality of the lens, the 14-24 beats it on the edges but the zeiss has much better performance in the center, especially at 2.8.

Nikon 24mm F1.4 G - The 24 at f2.8 vs the zeiss at 2.8 is no match, the 24 blows it out of the water, I use this lens when I want to get a little more natural perspective but still retain a wide angle to capture the aurora. It is also my go to lens for panorama, I have done quite a few with  the zeiss, but with the 24 it is just so much easier to put together the images without resorting to warping it to get it to look right. And also it goes to f1.4, perfect for shooting video and also isolating subjects.

Nikon 50mm F1.8 G - When it comes to the most bang for the buck, nothing beats this one, incredibly sharp, especially stopped down to f.2.8, but still sharp at 1.8. This lens I use to get that natural perspective as the human eye sees it (Human eye is more equivalent to 48mm, but close enough I would say). I have pre-ordered the Sigma 50mm F1.4 Art to step up the quality even more.

Nikon 28-300 F3.5-5.6 - This is the Kit lens equivalent for full frame, but make no mistake, this lens is really good, at the long end it does get a bit soft, but most lenses with such a range of focal lenght does.
And a big factor is the close focus distance, at only 25cm it is getting quite close to macro performance, and 300mm at F5.6 blows out the background quite nicely. This is also my go to travel lens.


Accessories:

Induro Tripod Ct113 - Great performance and incredibly light carbon fiber tripod, have even had a Red epic, with a big ass cinema lens + extras on this when I helped on a set as a B-photographer, it is a solid tripod.

Manfrotto Ballhead 055 w/Q5 quick release - This is a great head, and it can take a lot more weight than the tripod can, and I have gotten this tested in so many different scenarios, it performs flawlessly. And the Q5 quick release has a safety mechanism so you will not slide off the camera even after you have released the tension screw, you still have to press a button to release it fully which is great for those long nights when you get tired and focus starts to drop.

Manfrotto Pixi - Table top tripod, while this can technically take the D800 w/lens I use this for the Spydercube, so I can place it in the shot take a picture and apply accurate settings in post for all pictures taken under the same conditions.

Lowepro Flipside 300 AW - Great bag, nice and compact and you can design the inside to fit your needs.

Lowepro Rover - Waterproof with the ziplock tightened, this is for really bad weather, or when I need to take extra stuff besides camera gear as it has a rather big compartment for that.

Other stuff:

Polarizers and Nd filters to better work with light and reflection.
Spydercube and Spyder Lenscal for accuracy
Battery grip + extra batteries for cold nights and timelapse shooting.
Remote release, it helps a lot to get the sharpest possible images.
Wet cleaning kit for troublesome spots on the sensor
Sensor gel stick for regular cleaning of sensor.
Lastolite 5:1 Difuser/reflector more for portrait work, I do not do much of it, but it is a great thing to have.
Memory cards
Card reader
Blackrapid camera strap - Better to have the camera hanging on the shoulder and not the neck, especially for longer session of handholding.
Other nitbits not worth mentioning.


It is not like I started out with everything mentioned here, I have saved over a long period of time to get everything and I have aquired it 1 thing at a time.
You can do a lot with entry level gear and a kit lens, but I can say with confidence that the aurora photos I aspired to get when I was shooting with the Nikon D90 +  18-105 kit lens,  was not possible.

And I also would like to mention that even though it is a lot of stuff, it is still just tools. :)

So what is in your bag ? :D :D :woohoo:

Add a Comment:
 
:iconshiryu37:
Shiryu37 Featured By Owner Jun 9, 2014   General Artist
Awesome gear. 

My bag is slowly growing.
-Pentax K-r 
-Pentax DA-L 18-55mm (Kit lens)
-Tamron AF 70-300mm f4.0-5.6 w/ Macro Zoom
-Pentax-M 50mm f2 
-Pentax DA-L 35mm f2.4 
-Velbon Ultra MAX-is Tripod
-Sirui P-326 Monopod
-Oben VH-R2 Tilt Head (Last 1 items just recently got)
-Rubber lens hoods 

Thinking of upgrading my kit lens or get something that would replace my kit and Tamron telephoto. 
  

Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Jun 9, 2014  Professional Photographer
That gear would serve any photographer well.
The kit lenses has itīs uses, but limiting in certain aspects, not that you cannot take great photos with them, but in certain situations they fall a little short.
On that list it would be the first thing I would think about upgrading, the question is just how much of an upgrade I would go for, the way I shoot I would save until I could get the best possible lens, perhaps considering a ultra-wide lens.
Reply
:iconshiryu37:
Shiryu37 Featured By Owner Jun 11, 2014   General Artist
Yup. Choices choices. Was thinking of getting something since my birthday is coming up later this month. 
Tough choices since I also want to save up towards upgrading the camera down the future. (Maybe during the holidays) 
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2014  Professional Photographer
Lenses will always be the best investment, in general you want to have at least 4 times the worth of the camera in lenses.
But upgrading the camera depending on how much can make a great impact on images. :)
Reply
:iconsparia:
Sparia Featured By Owner May 6, 2014  Student General Artist
thats quiet a list...must have taken years...but I suppose thats how it should be..because you as friend of mine says...you have to earn your gear..and you certainly have sir, :D 

and I just wanted to say that..you have my dream camera....^^
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner May 7, 2014  Professional Photographer
It did not actually take too long, only thing is that I was eating less and buying no such luxury things as clothes while getting the gear. :)

The d800 certainly can deliver some stunning results. :)
Reply
:iconsparia:
Sparia Featured By Owner May 8, 2014  Student General Artist
aaahhh....can totally understand...

I think we have been following in Erasmus' foot steps..."When I have a little money, I buy books; and if I have any left, I buy food and clothes."

though for you its not even cloths...and for me its all books :D

yes it can :)
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner May 9, 2014  Professional Photographer
I see it as a good investment long term, the sooner I can finish my planned gear list the faster I can start travelling and capture those scenes I really want. :)
Reply
:iconsparia:
Sparia Featured By Owner May 9, 2014  Student General Artist
That's understandable and logical. And now u are doing just that. :)
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner May 9, 2014  Professional Photographer
:D
Reply
:iconrosebud263:
rosebud263 Featured By Owner Apr 21, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
Not much in my bag just starting out I have a
Fujifilm finepix S4300
Lens adapter to add hood and filter
Small bag that hold 4 filter
Extra batters, and charger
Small note book and pin
SUB adapter for SD card
Really small tripod about 6 in tall
And I put it all into my national geographic camera bag
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Apr 21, 2014  Professional Photographer
You can do a ton with that gear, there has been amazing images done with 4 mp cameras, and especially when you can add some filters then the creative vision can go even further. :)
Reply
:iconrosebud263:
rosebud263 Featured By Owner Apr 23, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
and that it does, it was a happy day when i found out i could add an adapter to my camera to be able to use filter it is a lot a fun using them
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Apr 23, 2014  Professional Photographer
And not to mention vital for capturing accurate single shots under difficult lighting conditions. :)
Reply
:icongareque:
Gareque Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
All of my kit is essentially entry level, but I do with it what I can.  I try not to have a love/hate relationship with what I have as per you first paragraph though.  I definitely want more...  I am looking even now at the choices of upgrading to either a D3200 or D3300, but like anything in life even when/if I wind up with top end gear, I am certain there will still be other bits and pieces that I want.

The unfortunate thing with every aspect of life is that when you get something new, there's always a nice, shiny, new version either already out, or just on the horizon :).  Keeps us always wanting 'something' else.
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Apr 20, 2014  Professional Photographer
That is why having a plan on what to get helps a lot, I know exactly what I am getting over time, it will take some time to accumulate, but the quality is to the level where it will take full advantage of the strenght of the sensor. :)
Reply
:icongareque:
Gareque Featured By Owner Apr 23, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
That's my plan, although I don't have an overall plan as yet, I still don't really know enough about the features etc to decide what I want long-term :).
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Apr 23, 2014  Professional Photographer
I did a lot of investigation, checked reviews, videos and so forth, then I decided what would suit my needs the best. :)
Reply
:icongareque:
Gareque Featured By Owner Apr 24, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
That's pretty much what I am doing currently.  Comparisons between gear etc.  Always helps to talk to people who know what they are talking about too :).
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Apr 24, 2014  Professional Photographer
I can certainly agree to that, and it can also help you save a lot of money, Ive gotten a few pointers from pro photographers that has helped med stear much better in the right direction. :)
Reply
:iconburstingspace:
burstingspace Featured By Owner Apr 18, 2014
a shark or something? (nichalos cage line)
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Apr 18, 2014  Professional Photographer
What do you mean ?
Reply
:iconburstingspace:
burstingspace Featured By Owner Apr 18, 2014
in a movie there was 2 ppl bringing a big bag with I think something maybe a dead person idk in it, and nichalos cage was like ''whats in the bag, a shark or something?'' because the bag was big and had something big in it
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Apr 18, 2014  Professional Photographer
That sounds like it could come from the movie Face/Off. :)
Reply
:iconburstingspace:
burstingspace Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2014
yeah its from a movie I forgpot which one
Reply
:iconaussiedidge:
AussieDidge Featured By Owner Apr 17, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
For me, if only I had time and could use it more: =p

- Canon EOS 600D
- Canon 18-55 mm lens
- Canon 55-250 mm lens
- (And I think some spare filters, chargers, etc etc.)

Still, for the real lack of tools, I've been able to take great photos that hopefully I'll get round to sharing sometime. Don't think I'll go this far at a professional level, but for what I've got, it worked out well so far. :)
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Apr 18, 2014  Professional Photographer
Yeah that gear would serve well for most, you have a very nice focal lenght so there isnt much you cannot do.

And besides it is more spesific types of photography that might require different gear, like for instance true macro photography, then you would have to get a dedicated macro lens.
That gear would work out just fine for most situations. :)
Reply
:iconaussiedidge:
AussieDidge Featured By Owner Apr 18, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I'm real glad for that opinion, Tommy, especially as a guy who's done this for a living and whose photos still astonish me to this day.

Sooner or later I'm gonna post some new photos I took, while hanging out with family. Maybe if you have time, check em out and tell me what you think. :)
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2014  Professional Photographer
Send me a holler when you get those shots up and I will give them a look. :)
Reply
:iconaussiedidge:
AussieDidge Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
They're all up and raring to be seen. Should be part of my Featured gallery, if you care to take a look. Looking forward to your thoughts soon. :)
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2014  Professional Photographer
Not bad work, sharp and crisp. :)

With a touch more contrast on some of the shots and where you have the distant haze some clarity, but all in all, good work. :)
Reply
:iconaussiedidge:
AussieDidge Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I do think I might get me some photo-editing software for touch-ups and fixings as I need them (not to mention as a kick-ass Paint program) but I'm real glad these made an impression.

Thanks for the thoughts, dude, I appreciate them. :)
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Apr 20, 2014  Professional Photographer
my pleasure. :)
Reply
:iconhelliann:
helliann Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
thank you so much for sharing! :heart:
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2014  Professional Photographer
Sure thing. :boogie:
Reply
:iconcarolina-hearts:
Carolina-Hearts Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
-Cannon Rebel T3 (also called the 1100D, I believe)
-16-25mm lense
-75-300mm lense

I also have a Nikon L810 digital camera.
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2014  Professional Photographer
The rebel is a fine camera, and you have a great range with those lenses. :)
Reply
:iconticoun:
ticoun Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2014  Student Digital Artist
- Pentax K-30   weather sealed DSLR
- SMC Pentax-DA 18-55mm ƒ/3.5-5.6 AL WR    weather sealed lens
- SMC Pentax-M 50mm ƒ/1.4    Manual, great for portrait stuff
- SMC Pentax-M 28mm ƒ/2.8   Manual, this one has incredible color saturation
- Sigma 70-300mm ƒ/4-5.6 APO DG Macro   Good telephoto zoom lens
- MC Vivitar teleconverter 2x   Manual, when I shoot stuff that's far away
- Velbon CX440 tripod
- Cheap shutter remote, gets the job done
- Lens cleaner and lens cleaning paper. This is absolutely essential.
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2014  Professional Photographer
That is a good selection of gear, and you also have pretty much everything covered as well.

Shutter release does not have to be expensive as long as it gets the job done as you say. :)

Oh absolutely, having a clean lens is vital, if you do not have to go in and remove any spots all the better, cause spot removal even though getting the spots gone does not increase the overall image quality. 
Reply
:iconticoun:
ticoun Featured By Owner Apr 17, 2014  Student Digital Artist
The only things I'd like to eventually add to my bag are a good Macro, wide angle zoom, and a flash for more challenging lighting situations.
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Apr 17, 2014  Professional Photographer
Yeah with that, you should be able to cover any situation. :)
Reply
:iconforfrysning:
Forfrysning Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
Nikon D3200. Its great and small (and my only camera, though I have been looking into the D800)
18-55 DX kit lens. I use this mostly for my multiplicity shots and anything in the mid range
55-300 DX lens. For when we go skiing
10.5 fisheye. this is just fun to play with. Haven't quite figured out a specific use for it yet though
105 fixed 2.8 macro. Dad gave this to me. I sometimes use this with a extension tube and a cheap ring flash
shutter release
very cheap manfrotto tripod (honestly I hate this thing. Its not very stable, the tightening system moves the camera up when you tension it and its on the verge of breaking at one of the legs)
Just invested in my first real flash. A nikon SB700 speedlight that I cant wait to start using.
Reply
:iconrogersphotos:
RogersPhotos Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2014  Student Photographer
Ahh I looked up the fisheye and the macro :O that's expensive stuff

Also I looked at your gallery, and I see why you need a tripod. The rest of what I said seems ok though...

You are definitely unique in what you do, which is something I can't say of myself. Keep up the good work.
Reply
:iconrogersphotos:
RogersPhotos Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2014  Student Photographer
Dude... I had your exact camera and lens setup. No fisheye or macro, but it seems that those are the cheap versions of each (not that fisheye is ever expensive).

Anyway, the flash changes everything. I started with the D3200, 18-55, 55-300 and no flash. SB700 will change your life! Oh and it's really discouraging at first when you use it because you have no idea what you're doing with it. It seems like nothing changed.

With the flash:
-use the 90 degree angle for most cases, especially with the 55-300
-use 45 degree with the diffuser and bounce card (both are built-in) for objects, close-ups, small animals... most anything that you'd shoot with the 18-55
-use the yellow plastic piece when shooting indoors (it really helps remove color casting)
-green piece is useless, other clear piece is useless

Oh and I "upgraded" to the D3300 because my 3200 needed cleaning (which is either expensive or risky, depending on what you do). Also it was newer and I liked the idea of doing easy panoramas with my real camera, instead of my phone. The kit lens is improved on 3300, and they removed the low pass filter so I get nice details now (like this fav.me/d7egj3c).

As for the tripod, I have one that was about $100 or so. It's very sturdy and reliable when I use it, which is not often. The longer you use your camera, the steadier your hands will get. I haven't touched my tripod in about 6 months. Anyway, if you decide to get one, this is what I have: www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001…  The most important aspect of a tripod is how much weight it can hold.
Reply
:iconforfrysning:
Forfrysning Featured By Owner Apr 17, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
needed cleaning? let me guess, spots of dirt in the viewfinder? I just sent in my camera into nikon to see if they could clean it but they wanted to charge me $200 since I lost my insurance card. Seems like a common problem on the D3200. Yeah the fisheye and macro lens were given to me by my dad who no longer used them. Perks of living in a nikon house! 

Holding the camera stable is no problem, but the multiple exposure shots with the clones needs a tripod because even a little movement while taking the several pictures can add a lot more time to the post shot editing when stitching them all together. 

Also your shots look pretty good. If you want to try some odd types of photography for fun, check out this guy's youtube channel: www.youtube.com/channel/UCEsSh…;

He has some really cool tutorials on new ways to shoot and stuff.
Reply
:iconrogersphotos:
RogersPhotos Featured By Owner Apr 20, 2014  Student Photographer
Thanks for the tip
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2014  Professional Photographer
That is quite a good selection of gear, you can do pretty much anything with it.

The fisheye is for dramatic perspective, often when you are shooting close to something and you cannot get the whole thing in a shot, or when you just want to create a very artistic and distorted view of the world. :)

Right after the camera and one lens I rate a good tripod, if you are throwing 2000$ gear on a 100$ tripod, you cannot expect too much, a sturdy tripod would make your life so much easier :)
Reply
:iconforfrysning:
Forfrysning Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
yes the tripod (its a $50 tripod) was a gift. Been meaning to upgrade but haven't gotten around to it. I should though since most of my stuff requires a really stable image
Reply
:icontrichardsen:
Trichardsen Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2014  Professional Photographer
You do not have to spend that much on a tripod, the aluminum ones are a bit heavier yes, but they are quite sturdy, the carbon fiber ones are much more expensive and lighter, but you pay premium for it.
Reply
:iconstephgabler:
StephGabler Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2014  Professional Photographer
One thing that I always keep in my bag is a trash bag. They are perfect for those times you want to kneel or lay on the ground for a unique angle. This way I stay clean and still get the shot :)
Reply
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