03 October 2010

Inside My Camera Bag

I've gotten literally dozens of comments asking what camera, lens, etc I use for my photography. So I figured I may as well do a post on it, eh?

What's Inside?

Camera. I use a Nikon D60. It's a DSLR, which means that you can change the lens and have amazing control over the camera, just like ye olde film cameras, but it's digital, hence the "D" in "DSLR". Buy it here.

Wide-Angle Lens. My wide-angle isn't one of the big-range ones that go from 15mm to 4.5mm or something crazy like that. (I have used one, and it is hilarious, but I don't really like the fisheye effect.) Nope, mine is a Nikon DX AF-S Nikkor 18-55mm 1:3.5-5.6 G VR lens. It is probably the most basic lens for the camera; if you but the camera in a package (body + lens) this is most likely what will come with it. Buy it here.

Telephoto Lens. Oh, how I love my telephoto! My lens is a 55-200mm zoom, which is actually pretty good. I mean, you couldn't photograph lions with it or anything (next lens will!), but it's great for birds and seals and other animals you can't get right next to — aka, my favorite subject matter. The specifics: Nikon DX AF-S Nikkor 55-200mm 1:4-5.6 G ED VR. Buy it here.

Lens Filters. I have a large variety of filters. Basically filters are simply screwed onto the end of the lens and give you great effects. I have warming filters, cooling filters, UV filters, and (my favorite) macro filters. {Macro filters make any lens into a macro lens — I can get like an inch or less away from the subject with a lens that usually needs at least a foot and a half away from the subject!}

Camera Case and Camera Bag. Always make sure your camera is protected. My regular camera case (black) fits snugly around the camera and has enough padding for daily use. My camera BAG, meanwhile, is purple (awesomeness) and has enough padding to survive a drop off of Mount Everest. It also has an amazing array of pockets and enough space for all my gear.

Lens Cases. Protect your lenses; they're more expensive than the camera in most cases. Choose some that are lightweight but heavily padded.

Tripods, Monopods, and Epic-pods. Every photographer needs some kind of pod. Seriously. I have six. Two are regular tripods that can bring the camera to about 6 feet above the ground. One is crap and I never use it; the other is incredibly amazing and sturdy. I also came into possession of two other interesting pods via buying an antique camera at a yard sale. One screws into your camera and has some very scary jaw-like clamps; perfect for tree branches and the like. It looks like a bear trap, I'm not kidding. The other is what I call my Epic-pod. It fits into my hand, is lightweight, and is the most useful thing on the planet. The camera screws in and can be rotated around as you need it. It has a clamp for screwing onto furniture, trees, etc, but in the base there is also three little tripod legs you can set up on even ground. It is SO compact and SO useful! I also have one I have never figured out how to use and a mini-tripod.

Flashes. Confession time: I have two amazingly nice flashes by inheritance and I never, EVER use them. I never use the built-in flash on my camera either. Flash is tacky, in my opinion, and makes your image look cheap.
But fashion photographers and non-nature photographers use them all the time, so I suppose I'll try them. Someday.

Light Reader. Also came with the vintage camera via the yard sale: this little beauty tells you what your shutter speed needs to be. It is invaluable when you're shooting manually.

Remote. Another gadget I never have a need for, this remote simply acts as a surrogate shutter for your camera. So you can be something like four feet away and click the button, and the camera takes the picture. I prefer to be right in the action; I find I get better images that way. But it's great for self-portraits.

Cleaning Kit. Please please PLEASE don't let your lens or camera get dirty! The dirt, dust, and other crap, if not cleaned off regularly, will scratch your lenses and delicate mirrors/lenses inside the camera up and ruin them. Invest in a cleaning kit and use it often.

Well! That's what's in my camera bag. There is a LOT more than that, but those are the basics. Really all you need is a tripod, camera, lens, camera and lens case(s), and cleaning kit if you're just starting out.

Note: I am in no way affiliated with Nikon or any other company. I just love Nikon. Really.


  1. Wow! That's a lot of stuff... I just have my little point-and-shoot, a pretty camera case, and a glasses cleaner which I use to clean my lens. The little piece of soft cloth, one of those.

  2. Wow, thanks Olive Tree! I was really wondering what type of camera to get. What do you suggest? I want one that is a good price, and relatively good quality, but it doesn't have to be amazing. :)

    Thanks, girlie!

  3. You have a LOT in that camera bag of yours! I am not really into photography, so all that stuff is like foreign to me! Your photography is great, so keep on doing whatever you do! :)

  4. Bree, I suggest the Nikon D40. It's a good deal less than the D60 and pretty much the same thing. Get a lens like my wide-angle to start out with.

  5. I love Nikon too! I have a refurb D3000 that I just got and I love it. It's not the best DSLR, but it's the only one I could afford. I really need to invest in a good cleaning kit, though.

  6. Awesome! I am going to get a D40 or a D60 for Christmas. Well, I'm not supposed to know that... I sorta heard my parents talking about it in their room. Shhhhh...

  7. Wow, amazing camera and accessaries! I'm in love with your photography, and I was wondering what lenses you used, what camera, etc. This post helped a lot! I'm saving up to buy a camera, and I think I would like to buy the Nikon D60. By the way, when I clicked on the link for the camera that said "Buy it here," it went to a page about the Nikon D3000. Are they the same thing? Thanks!

    Elizabeth Rose

  8. Wow, that must have cost a lot of money,I wish i had a camera like that:)

  9. Could you please comment with a link as to where someone might happen to find your camera bag? :-)


  10. The bag is actually vintage — it came with the antique yard sale camera. The brand is Hummingbird but I don't think they make them anymore.

  11. I need to get one of those macro filters. My problem is my zoom is a different OD to my kit lens, meaning that I need to purchase 2 types of filer all the time! The expense is crazy. I've kind of limited myself to my kit and zoom lens and a polarising filter. It is restrictive yes, but it's also challenging and fun. I would love a proper macro and wide angle lens though. Maybe one day.

  12. Thanks so much!!! I need to get macro filter. i didn't even know there was such a thing! :)

  13. A really interesting post! I love photography, but I'm basically illiterate when it comes to lenses and other camera stuff. If that sounds contraditory it's because I take pictures with whatever old camera I find laying around the house...but if I save enough money to buy a new one, I'm sure this post will come in useful!


  14. I'm really interested in photography, but I don't have a really good camera for it. I want a really good camera, but can't afford anything over 150. Do you have any suggestions about what brand or type?

    Still Soaring,


because comments = ❤

read about