Nikon Camera Bodies:
- 70-200mm f2.8
- 12-24mm f4
- 35mm prime – perfect for video
- 50mm f1.8 (yeah I know folks like the 1.4 but this is so much lighter, fits in my pocket, i rarely take it to less than 2.8 anyway, $$$$ less!)
- 85 mm f1.8
- 24-85mm DX macro – awesome lens!
- 24-85 AF-S – very different than the old one – no macro! But it came with the D600 and it’s SHARP!
- Nikon SB700
- Nikon SB800’s (2)
- White Lightning Ultra 1800 in Octobank for studio work
- Alien Bee
- Pocket Wizard Flex TT5 (2) Radio Transceivers (2)- work with Nikon SB800s ttl AND WL & Alien Bee
- FotoDiox adjustable lights for video
Stuff: video geek toys for hubby like matte boxes, 10′ crane, cineslider…
For me – Joe McNally EZBox, various reflectors, soft boxes, light stands, foldup backgrounds…. Favorite bag? Domke F2 Journalists bag – lasts for decades of hard use!
Favorite camera strap? Domke swivel 1.5″ gripper strap. Swivels are critical to avoiding tangles and gripper coating helps keep camera on shoulder. Plus they’re comfortable canvas and last for decades.
Where do we “shop”? Cord in Kenwood – Pete & Helene, Roberts in Indy – Jody, K&R in KY – Wilma. Favorite media: Lexar pro 8gb class 10 400x. Super fast, professional grade, comes with rescue software.
And you know what my all-time favorite lighting set up is? 1 window! Done! LOL Nothing beats Mother Nature! Maybe a large pc of foam core from Hobby Lobby for fill.
Nikon VS Canon
A word about brands & gear! I’ve used BOTH Canon & Nikon professionally. I personally prefer Nikon, as does my photojournalist husband Glenn Hartong. Given the option, we prefer Nikon’s flash system as well as their predictable & consistent exposure response. We also love the D600 & D7000 for video – especially with prime lenses. We’ve both used a Canon 5DMkII for news. Not only does it take a bit of getting used to having things “upside down” but we’ve found Nikon menus and buttons to be easier to access – both in “the heat of the moment” and just in general.
But the bottom line is, it’s all about the camera you have (even iPhone – which Glenn shoots for the newspaper ALL the time!) and what you do with it. Make the most of it! Whether it’s a Ford or Chevy, chances are you can reach your destination…
Both Canon & Nikon offer top quality products. We do suggest that you stick to their lenses and more importantly their flashes to obtain the best results regardless of which system you use. “Off brand” just doesn’t give us the best results, in our opinion. I’ve personally used Tamron & Tokina lenses and been happy. Personally I do still prefer “name brand”. There’s a reason professional photographers spend $2000 on a telephoto f2.8 lens. Trust me!
If you’re going to spend the money on the body – invest in a great quality flash! The Nikon SB700 is amazing! It comes with wonderful accessories for a ton of flexibility, and it tilts and swivels, plus it does REMOTE with 1 click! I’ve had my SB800′s for years and put them through a ton of daily work in all sorts of environments. They really perform – TTL (through the lens – matching exposure without a 2nd thought!). I’ve assisted a bunch of 1:1 clients who have tried to use off-brand products and just are not happy with the results – they’re not consistent!
Bottom line – stick with your brand. Invest in TTL with flexibility!
- UV or Skylight filter for lenses (unless you’re shooting video) – mostly for protection.
- Circular Polarizer filter for largest filter size & rings to adapt to other lenses*
- Closeup filter – great if you don’t have a macro lens. Comes in various strengths.
- SB800 flash feet and Bogen Justin clamps for flashes
- a light stand and translucent reflector
Circular Polarizer filters are great for removing reflections from leaves, especially fall color, water, glass, and more. ALWAYS get the best glass you can afford. We personally like B+W and Tiffen filters.