What Does Your Gear Checklist Look Like?

ayushverma

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I am an aspiring travel photographer hoping to one day make a living (survive might be a better term) on my photography skills. I haven't exactly narrowed down to any type of niche area of photography, but am willing to take on any and all projects. I enjoy taking pictures of nature, landscapes, scenery and the night sky the most, but also have done some business photoshoots, product compilations, real estate photography, headshots, and more.
I am curious to hear from some other professionals about what your setup looks like and what pieces of gear you can't live without. I am looking to build out my gear bag and am searching for some feedback from others before investing tons more money than I already have in additional equipment.
 

OldManJim

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Welcome to the forum. You'll find some really knowledgeable on here and, like many other sites, a few snarky ones.

It's difficult to answer your question as posed, since each type of photography has its own set of gear. For wildlife photography, you can't go wrong by visiting https://backcountrygallery.com. Steve Perry is a great teacher and an expert at his craft.

I'd suggest you start by deciding which types of photo shoots you hated. Eliminate them and that will narrow your list.

Start looking at the rest. You will face a few challenges that must be met to be successful. They are: skill level, equipment needed, marketing, and business acumen. All are critical to success in you chosen life.

The skills needed by a landscape photographer, jewelry photographer, portrait photographer, and real estate photographer are each much more than knowing the "sunny 16 rule". The same is true for equipment.

As far as marketing and business acumen, there are a number of book, online courses, and (once the lockdown ends) courses at community colleges.

Success doesn't come easy but when you achieve it, it's one of life's greatest rewards.

Good Luck!
 

Original katomi

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Have a plan in place to replace camera & kit.
I used to work for my self, not photography, and each job I added a tool replacement element to the cost of the job.
Have a programme in place that you replace mem cards, external hard drives, camera, lens and so on.
Work out consumable items, eg lens cloths think of the hidden expenses
Camera insurance what happens if you are on a shoot and your kit is nicked dose it cover your use whilst travelling or damaged in transit. It happens, even to the best. during the making of round the world in eighty days the camera crew dropped kit off a pontoon into some river...
 

Overread

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Two photographers can shoot the same subject, but take vastly different kit. Style, method, what you've got, budget etc... these all influence what makes your kit work for you. It's also a question that's really impossible to answer for someone very new to it when you've no real grounding of your own and not even a specific subject area of interest to at least aim you in the rough right direction.

I appreciate the desire to plan things out and have a game plan of what to buy and to also save money by getting better higher cost things rather than lots of stages between. However when you've no real structure or focus yourself at this stage, then you can't really process the information with any relevance to yourself.

Any one of us can list gear at you. I can tell you my macro gear, but it would be totally and without question, useless to someone going to shoot birds. Meanwhile one portrait photographer might take a dozen lights and a mountain of modifiers; another might take a spare tripod, a reflector and one flash. Neither is correct, neither is better than the other; they simply reflect a different intended outcome and a different style.



Sometimes you've got to get your feet wet before you can really get anywhere. In addition sometimes you do have to make choices on cheaper gear to at least try things out before making bigger purchase choices. What works for me might not work for you even if we are shooting the same subject and situation. In addition you've not really given any hint as to budget. There are dirt cheap options all the way to spending tens of thousands very quickly.
 

Soocom1

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having a bit of many different kind of camera gear and setups, I can attest to the issue of Jack of all trades, Master of NONE!

Photography is much like that.
I am horrible with people, but sometimes (and I do mean sometimes) shoot (IMO) good nature and landscape. Much of my current gear is structured in that direction.
Though you could get away with street photography using s Tilt Shift adapter with a Russian Med. Format lens bolted to a Fuji mirrorless, it wouldn't be my first choice.

The same can be held with buying a kit system like a Canon 90D with a 70-300 Kit lens and trying to shoot good Macro...
You can, just may be a very deep challenge to get a good shot.

As stated above, try out everything and eliminate what you don't like or show not a lot of talent in.

But most importantly, have fun with it.
 

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