I think one of the most common questions that photographers get asked by other photographers is “what gear are you using?” Now, I want to throw out there that the gear doesn’t necessarily make the photographer. Yes, you should have a quality camera BUT a great camera is not all that it takes. Thats not what this post is about.
So, lets just start by saying this is not an inventory of all the gear sitting in my house. It is not an explanation of each camera and lens etc. This is just what is currently in my bag and what I like to shoot with at this time. I have a handful of cameras that I take out for certain occasions or for certain trips or for the ease of a point and shoot. For this post, lets just talk about what comes with me to a session, down to the permanent marker and the ziplock bag.
Permanent what? Ziplock who? I’ll get to that.
For now, lets talk cameras. I am a minimalist…. ish. My Pentax 645n (the workhorse) is absolutely 100% in my bag EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. It is the camera that I do the majority of my shooting on and I feel no need to change that up. On that camera I USUALLY have the 75mm FA lens, because its what I started on and I appreciate auto focus. I also have the 45mm (manual focus) that I bring with me occasionally, but don’t use nearly as much as I should and I recently became the proud owner of a modded Zeiss 80 f/2 (manual). I have been pushing myself to use it more and more and LOVING the result. Of course I always hav my Sekonic L-358 light meter with me. If you are shooting film you should be using a meter…. it was a game changer for me. I also usually bring my Fuji Klasse W Point and Shoot 35mm camera for some fun at the end with a fun film in it or a normal film and plan for light leaks. Finally, I SOMETIMES bring either my Instax or Polaroid for an extra fun surprise at the end of the session.
So…. What else goes in the bag then?
Well, film. 10 rolls of color negative, 2 rolls of black and white (that I may or may not shoot). A ziplock bag for storing the film post shoot, permanent marker for marking film for pushing, washy tape incase the seal on the film breaks, fanny pack cause duh, lens cloths, extra batteries, light meter obviously……. is that it? I think thats it. There is probably some chapstick, gum, maybe a secret stash of candy (wink wink), spare hair tie…. but you don’t care about that. So yeah, thats pretty much it. There are some secret little tricks in my bag buuuuut I’ll save those for another day.