Friday, 15 February 2008

What's in the bag? Part 1

I am often asked if someone should buy this lens or that camera. I cannot answer that question directly as I do not know what that persons style is and how that equipment will fit in with their workflow. What I can do is tell you what I shoot with. The next few posts will show you what I use for different situations. I use mainly three different bags and countless combinations of gear, chopping and changing depending on the project to get the job done.

First up is the 'light weight' bag. This is used for landscape work where I don't need or want a heavy pack and for climbing and action photography.

The main body in this set up is a Nikon D3. This camera is awesome. I am totally blown away by the quality and the features of this new body. It is no light weight likes its cousin the D300 but there are a few features that I just cannot do without and are worth the extra weight like the 100% viewfinder, and that viewfinder is awesome!

Lenses range from 14-200 mm in just three lenses. the 14-24mm f2.8 the 24-120 (soon to be replaced by the 24-70mm f2.8, hurry up Mr Delivery Man!) and the 70-200 f2.8. All heavy fast f2.8 lenses which allows me to make my subjects pop with shallow DOF. I carry a TC17e a 1.7x teleconverter to extend the range of the 70-200 to give me a little extra reach.

I carry two flashes for action work with a SU-800 commander unit to allow for off camera flash control and a couple of filters, a polarizer and a Canon 500d close up dioptre to allow the 70-200 to focus at 1:1 and two ND grad filters a .6 soft edge and a .9 hard edge from Lee.

All this fits very neatly into the Orion AW from Lowe Pro as seen above. What you cannot see is the grads and the SU-800 which fit in the front pocket with a spare camera battery and the TC17e which is under the 24-120. In the side pockets are spare AA batteries for the flashes, a shower cap to protect the camera from rain and an allen key to tighten any plates that need it. In the top lid is a pen and model/property release forms, a necessity for any shots for commercial use.

Happy shooting!


Anonymous said...

Dude! How in the heck do you get your 70-200 AND D3 in this bag? I have D3, 70-200 VR, 17-35, 28-70, and sb800 with same bag but only get the flash, d3 (barely) and 17-35. my 70-200 is over the top. :+D

Do you ever use the back pack portion of the Orion AW?

Craig said...

You can see that is it is all pretty crammed in. It is even tighter now that the 24-120 has been replaced with a 24-70 (slightly smaller than you 28-70). The key is to put the filters in the top pouch on the opposite side to the 70-200. The 70-200 is a little tall for this bag but fits at a squeeze. Have a look at the second image to see the configuration. The things you cannot see is the 1.7x tc under the 24-120 (24-70) and the grads and SU-800 n the front pouch. This bag isn't ideal but it is the best I have found so far. I am testing a bunch of bags at the moment and will report back when I am done.

Anonymous said...

I agree. I have several bags and this seems to work the best so far. (I posted the first comment above.) I don't bother with my TC1.7 and my top pouch is stretched out now. I also have an L bracket from RRS attached. That takes up some serious space. Please update on your search for the ultimate bag for the D3 user.