When it comes to gear, don’t we all love having options when out on a shoot? There are so many great tools with which to create but more often than not, I find myself using the same things when it comes time to push the button. Everything on this list has been vetted through countless sessions in the field, and in all kinds of conditions imaginable (even snow!).
Note: I am not sponsored by these companies in any way, nor was I paid or influenced to write this.
Camera Body: Sony a7rii
The finely aged, the tried and true, the former king of the resolution game; the Sony Alpha 7R Mark II was a game changer in the pursuit of resolution. Pairing 42MP of detail with almost 14 stops of dynamic range, this mirrorless camera body changed the way I shot, edited, and perceived digital photography.
In-camera stabilization has been incredible for capturing more than adequate handheld images in the field. This allows me to keep the tripod packed away and I can explore a wider variety of compositions during rapidly changing light at the bookends of the day. Keep reading if you want to see what I do when it’s time for a tripod!
Coming from a history of shooting action sports, it was a good thing that my primary focus had shifted to landscapes, because the continuous frame rate topped out at an okay 5 fps. As a camera body geared more towards fine art and high-end commercial work, a higher frame rate isn’t really a necessity, and at 40+MB per shot, who needs it to be?
Camera Lenses: Sony 16-35mm f2.8 GM
When I made the switch from Canon to Sony about 4 years ago, I wanted to get a native piece of glass that would primarily excel at landscape photography, but also be well suited for shooting adventure and travel. A little sifting through the meta data of my Lightroom catalog and I found out that often times I was either shooting wider than 35mm, or longer than 50mm.
Longer lenses certainly have their place, but for as often as I use it, I was better off using a Metabones adapter on my Canon 70-200 f2.8 IS and decided to invest in a wide angle lens instead.
Sony’s 16-35mm f2.8 GM lens was a dream pairing with my a7rii camera body. A wide, fast, sharp lens that allows me to create a wide variety of images across the desert landscape.
Tripod: Manfrotto Brand
I love this brand so much, both of my tripods are made by Manfrotto.
Memory Card: SanDisk
One of the most trusted and reliable names in the memory game. I use a fast card to minimize the bottleneck in writing captured images, and I went with the 256 GB capacity so that having to swap cards in the middle of a shoot or trip is a thing of the past. This is one of the small ways I reduce maintenance time and keep my focus on capturing images.
UV Filter: Formatt Hitech
If I decide to protect my front element while out in the field, my go-to brand has been Formatt Hitech. With their slim profile UV filter threaded on, I never have to worry about distortion OR scratching my front element. And that’s way more expensive to replace than a UV filter.
Since I mention UV filters as a means of protection, I should also note how much I rely on lens hoods for the same reason. When traveling through the wilderness I don’t always have my camera packed away deep inside my bag; since I’m actively shooting and searching for shots, a lens hood does double duty and keeps tree branches from getting anywhere near my precious front element.