I will be the first to say that I have taken way too long to write this post for you guys! “What gear do you use?” is probably the #1 question I get on a daily basis. So I figured with Christmas coming up, it’d be the perfect time to share with you all my not-so-secret list of photography and video gear for travel!
Sony A7R II
The main component in my bag of gear is my camera body, the Sony A7R II. This was a bigger investment for me since this particular camera comes with a pretty high price tag, but with good reason. This camera joined Sony’s line of mirrorless cameras and I believe it’s the perfect travel camera because it’s smaller and lighter than a traditional DSLR, and shoots both amazing photo and 4K video. Not too many cameras are able to do both well, and that’s why I decided it was the perfect camera for me. If you’re ready to take the leap and join the world of mirrorless, you can purchase one on Amazon for $3,200.
Sigma 35mm 1.4 ART
I can’t stress enough how much I love this lens. This is my go-to lens for 90% of the work I shoot, and is pretty much all I ever have on my camera when I travel. Sigma’s line of ART lenses are more affordable than their competitors and are incredibly sharp. A 35mm lens is a good focal length for travel because it’s similar to what your eye would see and good for city shots and landscapes, while still suitable for portraits. You can buy it new on Amazon for $899.
DJI Mavic Pro
So I actually just got this new drone from DJI in the mail today, but I know it’s about to become my favorite item in my bag! I’ve been shooting with DJI drones for about a year and a half, and previously have shot with a Phantom 3 Professional and a Phantom 4. But when I saw that DJI was releasing their new Mavic that is sustantially smaller than the previous models, I knew I had to jump on it. With the Mavic, now you can have a personal drone with 4K video that fits into any backpack. You can the Mavic on DJI’s website for $999.
Another awesome piece of gear I picked up this year is the DJI Osmo, a handheld stabilized 4K video camera that attaches to your smartphone. Camera stabilizers for video are typically massive, heavy, and very expensive – not the best scenario for travel. The Osmo has the quality you’d get from one of their drones in the palm of your hands, and provides an incredibly smooth shot thanks to their 3-axis gimbal that gets rid of the “shake” you get from shooting handheld and walking around. You can get it on DJI’s website for $569.
GoPro Hero 4 Black
Another piece of gear I never travel without is my GoPro Hero 4 Black. I’ve owned GoPro’s for years, and although they are simple enough to be used by anyone, I think every professional should have one in their bag. I use my GoPro for my more action-oriented activities and for underwater photos and video. And the best part is they are affordable and won’t take up any space! You can pick one up on Amazon for $337.
Knekt GoPro Dome Port
I use this dome for my underwater photos with my GoPro as an alternative to a housing for my main camera body, which can run upwards of $2,000. Camera domes are what allow you to achieve that “half-above, half-below” look for underwater photography and allow for some really creative shots. Definitely not a necessary piece of gear, but a cheaper alternative for those interested in shooting cool underwater photography. You can get a combo back on Amazon for $429.
Manfrotto BeFree Travel Tripod
I did a lot of research before I purchased my current travel tripod, and ended up going with the Manfrotto BeFree (you can see my review of it on my YouTube). In the past, I had always skimped on tripods and bought the cheapest and lightest, until one day I was shooting in high wind and had my camera blow over on the tripod and fall right on the lens – thankfully I had a filter on and only that shattered! Manfrotto makes some of the best tripods on the market and the BeFree folds up smaller than most quality tripods and is relatively light. You can pick one up on Amazon for $149.
Kelly Moore Pilot Backpack
One of the most essential pieces of travel photography gear is a quality backpack. I have been using the Think Tank Airport Helipak for about a year which fit my DJI Phantom, my camera body, a few lenses, and a laptop. Although it was good at fitting all my gear, it was so big and heavy when full and became a hassle to travel with. Thankfully I will now be traveling which my much smaller and lighter DJI Mavic, and will be purchasing the Kelly Moore Pilot as my new gear bag. Kelly Moore makes fashionable and functional camera bags that don’t look like camera bags, which is very important for keeping your gear safe! Unfortunately, this bag is in high demand is currently out of stock, but is $299 on Kelly Moore’s website.
Apple 12″ Macbook
Last but not least is my travel computer, the Apple 12″ Macbook. This is one of Apple’s latest releases and is similar to the Macbook Air, but with more storage and power. This Macbook is incredibly light and small, which makes it perfect for travel. Although it’s not as powerful as my 15″ Macbook Pro that I use at home, it’s enough for me to edit photos in Lightroom, upload photos for safety, and work on my blog and answer emails (travel blogger life!) You can pick one up from Apple’s website for $1,299.
And for fun, here are a few photos taken with this gear!
What camera gear do you love for travel? Share your favorite in the comments and on social media!