What’s in my bag? | Fort Worth Lifestyle Photographer

Not a week goes by when I don’t get asked a question about what gear I shoot with. I thought is was high time that I shared with you just what exactly is in my bag:)

For starters, I am a Nikon girl. But I haven’t always been. I am one of the few that has been on both sides. I started my photography life as a Canon girl. I was so happy with Canon. I loved my gear. I had absolutely no reason to change. It came time to upgrade by camera body a couple of levels. Before dropping some serious cash, another professional photographer friend of mine suggested I try out Nikon just for kicks. I rented some gear. Shot with it once. And fell head-over-heels in love.

Is Nikon better than Canon? No way. Is Nikon better for me? Yes.

I sold all my Canon gear and bought all new Nikon gear. And I have never looked back.

I get asked all the time about what made me switch. For me there were two things. First of all the focusing on a Nikon is ridiculous. The sharpness is completely unreal, it is what they are known for. Secondly, a Nikon just feels better to me. The features on Nikon and Canon cameras are what many describe as backwards or opposite from each other. I totally agree with this statement and because of this one will feel more “natural” to you. That is why I was able to pick up a new brand and feel confident enough to shoot on it immediately. It just made sense to me.

Now, on to my gear… My main camera body is the new Nikon D750. And yes, I am completely in love with it. Personally, as a lifestyle photographer, I need a camera that can handle a high ISO since I am indoors most of the time. This baby is wonderful. I shoot many sessions at 2000 or higher with little-to-no-grain.

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My back up camera body is my Nikon D700. This is a great body. It has been well loved but still has lots and lots of life to it:)

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I only own 5 different lenses. Sure, there are lots of lenses that I drool over. There are several lenses that I rent throughout the year. But, these 5 are the only ones that I can’t live without so they are the ones that have earned a spot in my official collection:)

Nikkor 24.70mm. This is a fantastic all around lens. It is perfect for everyday use and magical indoors.

Nikkor 105mm macro (vintage edition). There are several newer versions of this lens but I still love my old school one. Sure, someday I will upgrade but for now, this baby does a fantastic job. And, what many people don’t realize is that this lens is a great portrait lens outdoors! It creates some amazing creamy bokeh.

Lensbaby Composer Pro. This lens is definitely a toy. It doesn’t get used super often but when it does it makes playing around really fun. If you have not tried a lensbaby yet, I highly recommend it.

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Nikkor 35m 1.4. This is my love. I shoot with this lens 75% of the time. It is amazing for indoors. It is fast enough to capture crazy kiddos. The bokeh is amazing. This is the lens that lives on my camera body.

Nikkor 85mm 1.8. This is my go-to outdoor lens. I shoot most outdoor sessions with this baby. It is complete perfection. And here is the thing, I have used it indoors too. Yes, it makes for really tight shooting but it is fun to try things in new ways and again, the bokeh!

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I get asked a lot if I have a 50mm (nifty 50). My answer is No, I don’t. There is absolutely nothing wrong with the 50mm. It is a fabulous lens! I owned one for a long long time. I just found that once I got my 35mm I never used it. For me personally, having a great 35mm and 85mm is enough and the 50mm was just excess. That being said, I am sure that another 50mm will make it into my bag someday:)

There is a lot of other stuff in my bag too. I try to stay prepared for most situations.

Extra camera batteries

Lens cleaning cloth

Lens cleaning solution

CF and SD cards (I like SanDisk Extreme)

Advil or Tylenol (chasing kids with a headache does not mix)

Business cards

Olloclip (although truth-be-told) this really lives in my purse most of the time:)

Lens cleaning pen

Pens (I am forever needing to jot something down or for clients needing to sign a check!)

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Lastly here is my trusty Kelly Moore Songbird bag. It is the second Kelly Moore bag I have owned and I love it. I do need something bigger though so for shoots when I bring all my gear I will likely start using a small rolling suitcase to keep things safe and snug.

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As usual, I hope this was helpful to someone. I would love to answer any questions should you have them!

2 comments
  • hi. Thank you so much for your post. I love reading what other photographers have in their bags.
    I am just wondering now if I should switch to Nikkon? I absolutely do not like my 50 mm lens and for some reason it’s not sharp anymore and reading your post about brands, made me think maybe I should go ahead and sell everything and buy Nikkon?
    I love the lenses you have . 85 is too tight for me though.
    How do you shoot on 200 ISO with no brain at all?
    I just went to the waterfalls to do a shoot last night and shot in the dark with 800 ISO and they turned out grainy 😉 so maybe it is time to buy new camera.
    Beautiful photos girl ????????????????ReplyCancel

    • Hi Mary. Sorry for the delayed response. I just saw this comment. Anyways, to answer your questions: Before you go switching all your gear to Nikon, try having your lenses calibrated. Take your lens and camera body to your local camera shop and they can do it for you. That could very well be the problem with not getting sharp images. Shooting at a high ISO with little-to-no grain has to do with your camera body, not lenses. If you buy a body that is built to handle high ISO, it will and it is magical:) That being said, grain isn’t a bad thing. I actually love grain especially in my dark bw conversions. Grain adds dimension and moodiness. If you have it, embrace it:) Not all images have to be smooth and creamy to be beautiful. Best of luck!ReplyCancel

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