Gear Head

Have recently been receiving quite a number of emails and also Facebook comments from photography enthusiasts asking me what sort of gear I use to shoot the pictures that are on this blogsite. Instead of repeating myself like a broken recorder ;p I decided to write up a quick blogpost to share what gear I’m currently on and answers to some FAQs.

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Below’s a list of gear I bring along with me on actual wedding day shoots. Yes, the last item is extremely important to me. Fo’ real! 😉

Why two bodies?
I frequently carry two camera bodies during actual wedding days so that I don’t have to waste time switching lenses and to capture 2 different perspective of (almost!) the same moment at once.

Having two bodies is also a back up, just incase one dies (touch wood!), at least I can continue shooting with the other one. As a wedding photographer, it’s extremely important to have back up. Your clients’ memories are in your hand and that in itself is such a huge responsibility that one shouldn’t be joking when it comes to having enough gear on the big day!

What lenses do you use?
A brief run through on the lenses that I (currently) use:-
24 – 70mm f2.8: Mainly used during actual wedding day when I want a wider range to play with. I use it mainly during wedding ceremonies, for group shots and also when I need wider shots of the venue.
85mm f1.8: Apparently an awesome lens for portraits BUT I use this mostly when I’m shooting wedding receptions and want to capture candids from a distance. Much lighter than carrying a 70-200mm which I had for a month. It was back breaking 0.o Distance is lengthened when used on a cropped camera so yay!
50mm f1.4: My absolute favourite lens (as of now that is ;D). I use it almost all the time – for portraits, during reception, details shots. On a full frame camera, this lens is absolutely orgasmic!
10 – 22mm f3.5: Fun wide angle lens, paired with a cropped camera, it gives you a reaaaaally wide scene but not to the point of fisheye. Distortion does occur on the sides but once you get used to the lens, you sorta know what angles to get to avoid really yucky distortion 😀 Usually used when I’m in a (literally!) tight spot or for wide angle shots of venues.

Why wear a belt pouch?
Errr….because I think that wearing the photographers vest is THE ultimate no-no. Ok, so this belt isn’t exactly a fashion statement, but its uber comfortable and extremely convenient when I need to whip out lenses in a flash! No pun intended there by the way. With additional compartments, besides lenses, I also put my car keys, extra CF cards, camera batteries, AA batteries, phone, wallet, granola bar, my pet koala (kidding!) and lip balm inside. Best thing is, I feel like a cowboy whenever I wear this. Yeehaw!

How the ThinkTank modular belt with pouches look when in use. Behind the scenes shot by AT (who wants to remain anonymous -_____-“)

Why do you have snacks in your bag? (ok so its not part of the FAQ, just incase you were wondering ;p)
Because I get hungry every few hours! Whilst most of my clients feed me (YAY!), I’ve had one experience where a client thought that it wasn’t necessary to feed the photographer (even though it was a 10-hour shoot AND we were on an exclusive island where there was no convenience store around *gasp* ) and I nearly had gastric from the hunger. So better safe than sorry! Many photographer friends of mine are extremely noble and say they don’t mind not eating as they think it’s not nice. Frankly speaking, I would be sad if I didn’t have food 🙁 Even cars need petrol, machines need to be oiled, moreover human beings. So don’t be hatin’ me for having granola bars in my bag, its a backup plan. After all, a hungry photographer ain’t a chirpy
one! Well, in my case anyway ;p

What camera/lens/accessories would you recommend?
I’ll be honest with you. I am not a technical photographer, ask me any technical details and I’ll be stumped. I don’t even know how many megapixels my camera has or what’s the max shots it can take when its on sports mode. All I know is, I shoot from the heart.
 I know, I know, it sounds absolutely corny, but that’s how I feel. Of course, having nifty gears help a lot too! 

I’m not pro Canon or pro Nikon or pro other brands, it’s just a personal preference for me that I use Canon. I’ve got photographer friends who are using Nikon and even Sony! If you’re interested in buying or upgrading your camera/lens/accessories, I would suggest thinking about what type of pictures you like shooting. Then start by researching the gears which would help you do so. I usually check out www.fredmiranda.com for reviews. Also test out the gears at the camera shop before coming to a conclusion, even better if you have a friend who has the gear you want to buy, then you can borrow it from them to test it out 😀 Hehehe…

I’m a firm believer in constantly upgrading my gears whenever the budget allows for it. But what Ken Rockewell said is something I constantly remind myself of too, “No matter how advanced your camera you still need to be responsible for getting it to the right place at the right time and pointing it in the right direction to get the photo you want“.

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If this post out as sounding snobbish or know-it-all, please excuse me. Whatever’s written above is just my personal point of view, personal preference and all I hope is that it sheds some light to the questions a couple of photography enthusiasts have emailed to me previously 🙂 If you have any other questions, just leave a comment in the box below, and I’ll update this blogpost with your question within the next couple of days 🙂

If you’re ever in doubt about any technical information or gear, my best advice is – Google it (Fo’ real! Google’s like one of my best friends :D), wOOt!

Y’all have a super duper day ahead!

21 Comments
  1. Na, I’m curious to see you in action..can I tag along in any one of your session? =) don’t worry you won’t even know I’m there…hihi

  2. I think your gears are just right. Reason? All of your gears are utilized and essential for your work. None of them goes to waste I believe….and that includes the Essence of Chicken and Granola’s. =) I could not imagine myself moving around for 10hrs without food…gosh. I’d be grumpy as an old man!

  3. Yo yo SuperAnna! For a minute i was wondering why you were carrying 2 flashes… Then after 2 minutes i ‘realized’ you carry two cameras. Damn fail! Lol!

  4. Hi Sis, just need ur honest opinion, is it true with kit lens itself, we can shoot like “L”uxury lens? Or gear is the second?? demoralized a bit, coz just starting doing Wedding Photography… Saw a lot of photog out there, using Luxury lens for wedding… Help me to boost my spirit… 🙂

  5. Yay for Think Tank pouches! 🙂 You and I are gang. 🙂

    I also like the way you mentioned… “photographer friends who are using Nikon and even Sony!” like Sony is an afterthought… wow, there are people who EVEN USE Sony! 🙂

  6. I can’t help but leave a comment about ya blog. I find it truely refreshing, straight-from-the-heart POV. Unlike some other really Pro Photographers out there. I’ve seen your works when you did for Emma and Azrie when they played a short Nikah Highlights during their ceremony in Singapore. Its awesome and someone had to point out to me to close my mouth or else flies will start infesting. Its amazing how fast you can deliver to them despite the hectic schedule.

    Keep it up and stay healthy! Cheers!

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