Over the years I have tried and accumulated a lot of equipment, as I was shooting in many different areas. Each area required their very own special equipment and I loved to try out new gear.
The big drawback was, that I constantly overpacked to be prepared for all kinds of situations.
As much as I loved all the gear, I started finding pleasure in equipment restriction, in order to boost creativity and also travel more light.
Over the years I started selling most of my equipment and these days I am left with only one camera, three lenses and a filter set, tripod assembly and accessories, which are:
⇢Canon 5D MK3 full frame Camera with battery grip and Kirk Photo L-Bracket
⇢Canon 16-35 f2.8 III
⇢Canon 24mm TS-E f/3.5
⇢Canon 70-200 f/2.8 L IS III
⇢Lee 100mm filter holder
⇢Lee ND filter
⇢Singh Ray ND Grad filters
⇢B+W Polarizer and Singh Ray Blue-n-Gold Polarizer
⇢Manfrotto 055 XPRO-B Carbon tripod and Sirui K30-X Ball Head
⇢California Sunbounce Sun-Sniper
All that is stored in a GuraGear G Elite G26 backpack.
In a future blog I will describe in detail the filter system and do a review on the selection of the lenses.
I chose the 5D MK3 because I do like the full frame sensor which allows me to make great use of the ultra wide angle lenses. Also the high megapixels which give me enough room to correct or crop an image afterwards if I capture an image that’s maybe too far away and therefore outside the range of my lenses. I like the ISO range in conjunction with fast lenses that allows me to capture images in low light without the need to pull out the tripod.
With the battery grip installed I have easy means to handle the camera vertically, and it provides me with enough power for extended shooting.
I chose fast lenses and despite the weight, also picked the 70-200mm lens with image stabilization to save shutter speed. The 70-200mm lens is my all time favorite, absolutely love the speed and super crisp images. I mostly use it for portraits on my travels and to capture details. Another advantage I like is the compression caused by the long focal length, especially in the mountains.
In the wide angle area I still picked the 16-35 2.8 lens,
but it is not so crucial to have a super fast in the wide angle area in my opinion.
The 16-35 is quite sharp in the corners too at 16mm, and therefore it might replace my 24mm TS-E very soon.
The main purpose of owning the 24mm TS-E is that it enables me to shoot three frames vertically using a tripod and the ‘shift’ function of the lens, and then stitch them together.
The final image would be approximately the equivalent width of a 16mm image, but it would be taller. And, as the lens is oversized, I do not get the softness in the corners.
With these three lenses, I would have two different sizes of front threads. 77mm for the 70-200, and 82mm for the 16-35 and 24mm TS-E. Using the 100mm filter system from Lee enables me to use the same filters for all lenses. I only have to carry a 77 and 82mm adapter ring.
With the Lee Filter system containing two slots for rectangular filters and an 105mm adapter ring in front, I can use two square filters and a polarizer at the same time. The only drawback is that round filters have to be 105mm which bumps up the costs. I like the ease of handling of the filter system as it attaches and detaches very easily.
In my option a sturdy tripod is necessary especially for low light and creative landscape photography. When traveling tho I do not always carry my tripod, instead I make use of high ISO and the fast lenses.
I use a Manfrotto 055XProB Carbon Tripod which unfortunately is still pretty heavy, in conjunction with a Sirui K30-X Ball Head with a dove tail adapter. The dove tail adapter allows me to mount the camera horizontally and vertically using an L-Bracket thats permanently mounted onto the camera.
When using the 70-200mm lens, I have mounted a dove tail adapter onto the lens mount.
Carrying the camera on the sun sniper strap, I have attached a 1/4’ screw mount to dovetail adapter to the sun sniper, which allows me to quickly attach the camera or lens to the strap.
There’s few accessories that I always carry:
Lenspen - to remove dirt from lenses, camera mirror and sensor
Little Bellow - to blow of dust of lenses and the camera
LCD Viewfinder - to allow me better judgement of the photo in really bright or dark environments by blocking the ambient light.
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