Photography gear is an essential part of the image-making process, but it is a also subject that is much too easy to get caught up in. Of course better quality, faster performance, and modern features are all welcome additions to enhance your images and make your job easier. However, your vision and creativity must always come first. That is what you should invest time and money in primarily, especially if you’re just starting out. The easiest way to illustrate this point would probably be to check out the countless people making amazing images with their phones.
It’s really a wonderful time for beginners, hobbyists, and professionals alike. Camera lenses, bodies, lighting systems, etc are better and more accessible than ever before. But even more importantly, knowledge is more accessible than ever before. Find your vision and voice with the gear you have now. When you hit a wall and the equipment begins to limit you, then consider making that purchase.
Again, gear is great. I love geeking out and I get GAS (gear acquisition syndrome) as much as the next person. However, if thinking about gear begins to take away from the actual photography, then it may be time to step back.
That being said, if you are wondering what equipment I currently work with, let’s proceed.
Event and Reportage Photography Kit
For event coverage and reportage-style photography, I shoot primarily with a dual-body zoom kit. If I’m doing portraits or know I’ll be in low light situations, I’ll also bring a fast prime or two.
For my engagement sessions, family, corporate, and lifestyle shoots, I typically bring a prime lens kit. If the concept or situation calls for it, I’ll also bring a portable lighting setup.
Personal / Travel / Street Photography Kit
For my personal work and fun shoots, I generally like to keep it as light as possible. Below is the general list, but I also add and subtract things based on what I’m shooting or where I’m going. Actually, for many personal shoots, the X-T4 with just the XF 27mm pancake lens is all I bring.
Medium Format Kit
As they say in the automotive world, “there’s no replacement for displacement”. As much as I love light and compact gear, the quality that medium format sensors provides cannot be denied. This is my kit for when I want the ultimate image quality for my personal, editorial, and commercial work.
Editorial photography gear is a bit harder to generalize because it covers so many different genres and styles. I could be shooting travel and landscapes, food, or environmental portraits. Depending on the subject, I bring any combination of the reportage and portrait gear I mentioned above.
Tripods and Filters
Camera support and filters are an integral part of the image-making process. Whether it’s long exposures, product photography, or video, the items below help me to get the shots I need:
I love the Godox system for their performance and value. It also fills in a lot of gaps within the Fujifilm flash ecosystem. I typically use these lights with various modifiers for portraits, product, and food photography shoots. I’ve also included my favorite modifiers and light stands.
I am an ambassador for f-stop Gear. Their bags are well-designed and the ICU system provides so much flexibility in how you configure your pack for each shoot. Below is my current go-to setup.
These are the general lists of camera and lighting gear for the types of shooting I usually do. Of course, I can mix and match countless gear combinations depending on the situation. The overall idea is to travel as light and as simple as possible for every shoot while fulfilling my needs for the assignment. For more gear talk, please check out the blog.
I have presented the gear using affiliate links, which is not only a quick and direct way to view details about each item, but it also helps me out at no additional cost. Thank you!