Off the Beaten Path: Travel Photo Tools and Tips

April 04, 2013  •  Leave a Comment
Experience is the best teacher... to quote Benjamin Franklin. 
Between my years as a military brat and professional motion picture camera assistant prior to returning to stills imaging, I picked up a few things.
 
One, how to pack and travel lightly. Two, how to prepare ahead of time for a shoot. 
 
My travel photography prep list is pretty well-memorized by this point. But lately, instead of relying on memory (no one needs a 'D'oh' moment regarding memory cards when you're miles away from the nearest resource), I've started making photo 'flash cards' for my must-have equipment and accessories. 
 
I have one flash card each for the contents of my regular camera, hiking, and beach/marine bags. With the exception of my tripod, everything fits with room to spare for my (GPS enabled) cell phone, snacks, and misc. personal stuff. 
 
Generally, I pack up the night before then leave everything in front of the door. That way, even if I'm stumbling out in a mind-fog before dawn, I'd have to pick up my gear before I can even get to the knob.
 
Below are my bag basics (minus the items that live in my pockets or the car).
 
(Not shown: DSLR used to shoot these photos and travel tripod/head) 
 
travel photography equipment & accessories, © incite photography
Tip: Keep the round padded cases your filters come in. Since they twist lock, they're great for stashing multiple media cards in.
travel photography equipment & accessories, © incite photography
Tip: Make sure you can stay hands free. Small "foot" stands for speed lights, bean bag camera stabilizers, and neck straps with carabiners or small clasps attached for grey or media card holders all come in 'handy'.
 
travel photography equipment & accessories, © incite photography
Tip: Invest in a series of diopters. Not all travel photography involves large vistas and landscapes.
travel photography equipment & accessories, © incite photography
Tip: Always take a backup camera. Preferably, film not digital. Another tip: Metal card business card holders can double as a small reflector.
 What's in your travel photo camera bag and on your check-list?


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