Now that I have this beautiful new camera, I need some nice photography gear to go along with it! I thought about what types of photography interest me the most (based on what I have photographed in the past and what I am most drawn to), and then read blogs and reviews about the most useful equipment to help me do that. The list of 11 things I have come up with is a mix of basic functional items most photography kits need and items I feel would be most useful to me. This wishlist for photographic equipment is also influenced by my small budget and the fact that I am still new to DSLR photography and have no intention of becoming a professional photographer (so pros and people with money would have a very different list!).
Hopefully you will find this list helpful too. Here is my current equipment wishlist, in no particular order:
1. Camera Bag
My camera is currently housed in my old padded camera bag that I got from kmart in my late teens. It does the job, but it doesn’t hold anything other than the camera with a lens attached. Plus, it looks pretty daggy. I want something that won’t look too much like a camera bag, will hold my camera plus a spare lens or two and other accessories, and is easy to carry and access. I have been considering the Tamrac Express 7 or the Tamrac Adventure Messenger 4, but I think the Express range looks a bit fancier for a girl 😉
2. New Camera Strap
I want one that:
i) Is comfortable on my neck with better connected loops. The one that came with my camera scratches and digs into my neck and the loops that connect it to the camera are very awkward and often poke in front of the viewfinder.
ii) DOESN’T advertise the fact that I have a Canon DSLR. I don’t want my strap screaming out to everyone BEHIND me that I have a Canon DSLR!
3. A Spare Battery and/or Battery Grip
My camera takes the LP-E5 battery pack. I am also thinking the Battery Grip could also be very helpful for the portrait shots and extra battery power, but that is extra money so I will wait awhile for that. My camera requires the BG-E5 battery grip, which holds two battery packs (you can use it with just one though) or 6 AA batteries.
4. Lens Hood/s
Shame on you Canon for not supplying them with your kit lens! I am not sure how often I would actually use them, but if I can find some third party ones for cheap I can experiment. The lens hood for both my Canon 18-55mm and 55-250mm lens is the EW-60C – which is pretty puny. Some reviews have said that the recommended hood is only useful at the wide angle end of my 18-55mm lens, so I’ll have to find a more useful hood for each.
I love the Gorillapod I have for my little digital point and shoot, so I was thinking of getting another that is the right size for my DSLR. It would be handy to travel with and utilise in different places, and not too expensive. I also want another good tripod, but will need the moola for a nice quality one so it will have to wait (last thing I want is a cheap flimsy tripod falling over with a small gust of wind!).
6. Shutter Release Cable with Timer
A remote one would be nice, but alas no infrared receiver in my camera for the remote (unless I want a bulky attachment chucked on the hot shoe!). For my camera I need to get a third party brand to get the timer functions, but that makes it cheaper anyway.
7. Good Camera Cleaning Kit
Not to clean the inside obviously (me try to clean the sensor? Ohh that would be a bad idea!), but just to clean the outside body and lenses. Nice cleaning cloth, brush, air blower, and possibly some gentle lens cleaner fluid.
Okay so those were the camera essentials for the general wellbeing of my camera. Now for the fun items!
8. A Nifty-Fifty: Canon 50mm Prime Lens
Ooh I hear so many good things about nifty-fifty lenses! The photos are always so gorgeous: beautiful quality and the great wide aperture for shallow depth of field creativity. Ideally I want the Canon 50mm f1.4 USM, but that is pricey (for me at this time of my life) considering all the other stuff I want too. So I might have to settle for the Canon 50mm f1.8 II – still great image quality apparently, although bokeh not quite as snazzy and it doesn’t have the fancy USM for focusing, but it will be fine for my amateur needs. One final bonus: it promotes exercise hahah. Need to zoom? Use your legs!
9. A Super-Wide Angle Lens
Ideally the Canon 10-22mm f3.5-4.5 lens, but oh dear the money! I was considering the Tokina 11-16mm f2.8 but I am not sure about the limited range, and the price is still very close to the canon. I am thinking that the cheaper Sigma 10-20mm f4-5.6 lens will do the job just fine. I love the creativity of the super wide shots, and already find myself wishing my lens went a bit wider.
10. Fun filters
I have UV filters on my lens for protection, but I want to play around with both a polarising filter and a neutral density filter (not both at the same time obviously) I think they will be lots of fun especially when doing photography along the coast. My current lenses rotate when focusing, so adjusting the polarising filter to the correct angle for each shot will be…interesting. But I would love to see the improved effect of a polarising filter on the sky and ocean in photos. And I want to play around with the cool water movement shots along the coast, and apparently a neutral density filter will help stop the overexposure of long shutter times during the day.
11. External Flash
I have not really used my flash at all just yet, but I know there will be plenty of times in future when I will use it – and will benefit from the improved quality of an external flash. I am thinking the Speedlite 430 EX II would be just the thing for me – more features than the 270EX but not too expensive. If I do get it and choose to upgrade to the 580 EX II sometime further into the future, the 430 can act as a slave to the 580 master.
Finally: Wishlist item #12 – Lots of money to afford all of this equipment!
Do you have any suggestions or recommendations for my gear list? Feel free to pop them in the comments below!