As I was packing to gear up to head on vacation with Matt, I thought it would be fun to write a post all about what I bring with me on a trip to best be able to capture and produce photos for my social media and blog. I have a had a bunch of question about what type of camera I use and my lens, so that will be covered below as well as some other extremely useful things. Thank you so much for sending in questions, I have also made sure to include those answers below!
What type of camera do you use?
About two years ago I upgraded to my current camera which is a Cannon 6D and absolutely am in love with it. It has wifi capability making sharing to instagram super easy on the go as well as sending images to friends instantly. My biggest piece of advice when buying a camera is to start with buying the body only. The “kit lens” a camera can typically come with is basically a starter lens that you can’t do too much creative things with. I always buy my lenses separately and will list out which I have below.
What lenses do you have and what do you use them for?
A little side bar before we dive in, I would 110% invest in a lens protector and hood for each lens you own. My lens dropped my accident one time about a week after I bought it and I thought it completely shattered. Thankfully only the lens protector shattered and my lens was safe and sound! Also, the hood works wonder when shooting in sun or harsher light. I will add links for what lens protect and hood goes with each lens I chat about below.
Cannon 50mm f/1.4 – Also known in the blogger world as the “nifty fifty”. This lens was the first lens I ever bought when I first got into blogging. It is a great lens and helps create that beautiful bokah/blur background that helps make pictures look professional. The price-point is very reasonable for the type of images it can capture. (Lens Protector/Hood)
Sigma 35mm f/1.4 – This lens is my BABY!! I honestly don’t even have words for how much I love and use this lens. I hardly ever shoot with my 50mm anymore because I find this lens to be perfect. Shooting in the city it can get tricky with crowds, and this allows Matt to be able to stand closer to me and still get all the shots. I initially bought this lens for travel so we didn’t have to lug around the 50mm and another lens that can capture scenery, but ended up primarily shooting with this lens whether we are traveling or not. (Lens Protector/Hood (I think this lens came with a hood, but I have lost and rebought so many I can’t remember)
Cannon 24-70mm f/2.8 – This is the lens I just recently invested in. After doing tons of research on a really great zoom lens for travel, this one sold me. It is great for capturing things at a distance (such as landscape), which I struggled with with my other two lenses, but also great for shooting a subject (ex: myself at the beach) and also capturing the beautiful background. I am so excited to try it out while Matt and I are away and will report back with my thoughts! (Lens Protector/This lens came with a hood).
How did you learn photography? Are you self taught?
YouTube has been and always will be my best friend! Yes, I am self taught, but also had a great support system in the beginning when learning the basics from some of my blogger friends. I knew I wanted to learn how to shoot manual with investing in this camera, but I have NO idea how much patience you need. When I would learn something I would try and show Matt in the beginning, he picked up on what I would show him here and there, but I would say he did an incredible job learning how to use the camera with time…lots and lots of time. Once you learn the basics, it makes shooting and capturing moments so much fun! To this day, I turn to YouTube for everything. How to shoot best indoors, how to shoot in sunlight, etc. They have a video for everything. Just take time and sit with your camera and get out there and practice.
What bag do you use to carry everything while you are traveling and exploring during the day?
Now that I invested in a few more lenses, I am also in the search for a bigger and better bag to carry everything in. However, if carrying your camera with a lens attached and one other lens, I love this cute camera crossbody bag from Lo & Sons. Today I just quickly picked up this book bag (also LOVED this light pink one (both on sale), but hoping Matt carries it that majority of the time and didn’t want him to suffer carrying around a pink book bag) and have two of my lenses that I am bringing with me in this cosmetic case that works amazing as my lens protector/holder. It also has a zipper inside where I placed all my SD cards. Another great option for keeping your SD cards together is this tiny wallet with a zipper. I plan to toss this cosmetic case into the book bag along with my camera and the case it is in for when out and about. If you aren’t a big book bag person, this St. Anne Tote is a favorite of mine for everyday use!
Other gadgets I travel with:
Tripod – I really don’t think you need to invest in an expensive one, but If it fits into my suitcase I like to bring it along. It works great for getting shots of Matt and I together as well as stabilizes the camera when trying to get scenic/interior shots. Not necessary, but I enjoy having it.
External Hard Drive (this one is for a Mac) – I always bring this along to clear my laptop of images to make room for the new ones. It took one trip only where I did not have this and my laptop completely ran out of disk space no matter what I tried. It was sheer panic trying to create space without loosing important files and images that I needed. SO lesson learned, this is super slim and easy to take with you wherever you go.
Skyroam – Tiniest, yet best piece of equipment allowing you to have wifi anywhere you go! You can connect up to 5 devices and it is only $10/day total.
Portable Phone Charger – This one is pretty self explanatory 😉
Universal Plug Adaptor – I always like to have one on hand incase wherever you are staying doesn’t. Just be careful with certain products, the amount of travel steamers I have blown through because the wattage was not strong enough to be supported out of the US!
Instax Mini – I have loved taking pictures with this thing so much that Matt jokes I focus more on capturing the best mini polaroid than a picture for instagram at times, ha! It is so fun to play around with and use and I love creating a page in a scrapbook that documented our trip. Something about the instant gratification when it prints out!