I had another idea on my editorial calendar for today, but over the weekend I did nothing but research for a trip later this year and one of the photographers I found had a similar post that felt so relevant. Over the past year or so I’ve gotten a fair number of questions about what we shoot with and what beginner equipment we recommend.
For those of you who are new here, my husband shoots 95% of my content, I do quite a bit of our product photography, and every so often I collaborate with a sweet friend + blogger + photographer when it fits our schedules.
With 124 blog posts published in 2019, over 250 Instagram photos shot, and countless other brand-facing content campaigns completed, it’s safe to say we put our gear through the wringer so everything I’m going to share is tried and true, plus a couple items we have our eye on before our next big adventure.
It’s always fun to reminisce about the early days of the blog and cringe a bit at our photographic experiments. This post was one of the first we felt really proud about – actually almost 4 years ago to date! This was back when the blog was just a hobby and photography was something Lee and I were learning together.
Because in-phone camera options were limited when we started with photography, that wasn’t an option for us. But if I were just starting today, I’d definitely cut my teeth on the iPhone X or 11 camera. The truth is photography is an expensive hobby and if you’re just getting started, start with the equipment you may already have before you dive into the deep end.
Ok, so we actually started out with a super basic Nikon but I bought the a6000 late 2015 I think.
This was such a great camera to cut our teeth on and I would recommend it to any budding photographer.
I believe Sony is up to the a6600 (six versions of updates) but from some reviews it still sounds like the a6000 is a solid mirrorless camera – especially if you’re looking to spend less than $1,000 on a camera + lens combo.
There’s the option to buy this lens along with the body of the a6000 and it’s a great option without a lot of added expense.
*what Lee and I have found is that your camera body may just be a one-time expense but buying an arsenal of good lenses is where your money drains away!
We shoot consistently on a 50mm lens for the blog (a lot of bloggers shot on a 35mm too) and the fact that this lens goes all the way from a 16mm to a 50mm is great!
For Christmas one year, Lee bought me a beautiful camera bag that I still own (although I don’t use too often when we travel).
If you’re going to make the investment of a nice camera, make sure you also are prepared to keep it safe when you’re in the field. A bag with padding and compartments is always a good thing to have on hand.
While our 2020 gear looks much different than our simple 2016 set up, we’ve actually stayed brand loyal to Sony. We put hours and hours of research into different cameras and brands right before we upgraded (Sony, Nikon, Cannon, Leica, Fujifilm) and ultimately settled on the Sonya7riii. It’s a beast of a camera (full frame / mirrorless) that even being 2ish years old is pretty unrivaled.
We shoot 70% of our photos on this camera and it’s never failed us. The dynamic range, eye tracking features, and sensor is amazing. We’ll likely have this camera body for a good long while.
This is the newest addition to our gear collection and we love it more we thought we would. It’s extremely versatile and portable (key for us!). It also has a fixed 35mm prime lens so that addition to our lens collection was perfect.
We only shoot on prime lenses (one focal length) which is pretty controversial amongst photographers, but it works well for us. We started out with just the 50mm and 85mm then added the 28mm the following year.
our most used lens for the blog and the one we’re upgrading this year
used for product photography
perfect for travel photography and landscapes
We have so many bits and bobs for the camera I’m going to try and round them all up for you.
+ Memory Cards -all 64 gigs
This year we want to buy three specific items for our gear collection, but ultimately we have our eye on the Leica collection. You can live your entire life as a photographer and create amazing content on a Sony, Cannon, Nikon, but then there’s photographers like Joe and Maddie Greer that stun the world. Those photographers shoot on Leica’s and that’s the dream.
One day. But in the meantime . . .
(replacing our current 50mm with this one)