What's in the Bag? Part 2

September 17, 2021  •  Leave a Comment

Last time I took you on a somewhat vague trip through some camera equipment in my bag of tricks. The reason I was vague is because I don't want to lead you down a path that you would have a hard time coming back from. I may love my 15mm Irix lens, but when you pick it up and try it your results or satisfaction might not be on the same level. And if you end up having to ditch it, that is $650 down the tubes. This is not a lot when it comes to lenses, but if your budget is limited you need to make that budget stretch as far as you can.

So what else is in there? Stuff..

And the kind of stuff that can help you make a photo of the highest quality without having to do too much "in post". So having some filters of varying types will help you accomplish that. I mentioned it last time, but fairly near to the top of the list is a polarizer. Why? A polarizer will help you darken the blues in your skies, remove (or enhance) the reflections on water. You want a nice smooth shot of a crystal clear mountain lake with the mountains in the background, a polarizer will help you elevate that photo.

The next type of filter that I carry is a neutral density filter, or ND filter. I carry several kinds of them in my kit that give me flexibility when setting up my shots. I have a variable ND filter so I can keep things light when going on a hike, the downside of that is the fact that with a variable ND you basically have two polarizers working together to block and reduce light entering your lens. That means when you are at the extremes of this filter you may not get an even filtering of light. The other types of ND filters that I have are with the Lee Filter system and their square filters. This will include several levels of ND, but also several levels of graduated ND Filter. This allows to not only darken the whole frame, but darken a portion of the frame. This allows you to capture the light levels you want in the frame in one shot rather than multiple shots to layer in post.

An important part of my kit is of course a tripod. Since you can't handhold all the time, especially for timed exposures. So having some options for a tripod, or monopod, should be available. I own two tripods, first is a lightweight option from 3 Legged Thing that I love, and the second is a Promaster carbon fiber that is smaller which makes it easier to pack for trips. The 3 Legged Thing tripod is by far my daily driver, because it is lightweight, but very sturdy regardless of what I throw on top of it. Beyond that I have a Promaster aluminum monopod that I will bring with me for sports and other action photography where having a smaller footprint is necessary.

The rest of the kit is usually made up of some cleaning accessories, covers, remote triggers, extra batteries, and occasionally a hotshoe flash. Cleaning supplies are pretty atraight forward; microfiber cloth, a cleaner, and a brush or bulb syringe for incidental dust or clumsy fingerprints. Covers are important to help protect your eauipment from the elements, so having an adjustable or disposable camera cover to protect it. Take care, and Happy Shooting!

The remote triggers are an important accessory in the kit. But wait, triggers? As in more than one? Yes. One is an actual remote that will open the shutter with a button click, or keep it open for a pre-set time in Bulb mode. This is handy for timed shots when on a tripod because you want to be able to activate the shutter without touching the camera, introducing some shake. The second trigger I carry is an app connected trigger called the Pluto Trigger (insert link here) for capturing on programs through the app, or setting up a laser tripwire (think animals crossing a path) or taking a photo based on sound, and my favorite.. lightning detection.

So that about wraps it up for part two. Luckily for you.. there is not a part three. Thank you for sticking with me on this, and thank you for reading and following my work. Check back again for more blogs, and look out for new photos on here or social media.


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