Resources, Travel blog

Photography gear – our go-to camera equipment

Since I was young, I’ve always loved taking photos. Whilst I am definitely no pro, it is something I love! I love capturing special moments that Mar and I share both during our travels and at home. From the sneaky candid shots through to the beautiful landscape photos – I love every aspect of it!

Here’s a breakdown of all the equipment we use to capture and edit our photos.

Camera equipment – a snapshot:

  • Photography camera – Nikon D7500
  • Lenses – Nikon 18-55, Nikon 18 – 105, Sigma 70 – 300
  • Mirrorless Cameras – Sony A5100
  • Gro Pro – Hero 7
  • DJI Spark
  • Tripod – mini / lightweight full size
  • Camera Bag(s)
  • iPhone 11
  • External hard-drive
  • Portable charger
  • Editing
  • MacBook Pro

If you’re looking for some recommendations of travel / lifestyle camera gear, take a look at the breakdown below of what we currently use. 


Photography camera – DSLR & Lenses

We shoot all of our photos on a Nikon D7500 DSLR camera. Whilst it’s certainly not the best on the market, it’s great for what we need and we think it’s reasonably priced for what you get. The camera we use is great for intermediate photographers – it’s relatively easy to use but you’ll reach maximum potential with your photography if you understand how to shoot in manual with this camera.

We used to shoot on the Nikon D3400 – this is a great place to start if you’re beginning to take an interest in photography and/or are on a relatively tight budget. You then have the option to upgrade at a later stage should you feel you need to / your budget allows for it!

We have a couple of lenses. This includes the D3400 kit lens (Nikon 18-55) and the Sigma 70-300mm. However, our go to lens is definitely the Nikon 18-105 – it’s perfect for travel, as it’s pretty diverse and has a decent zoom range without being too bulky!

Once you’ve got your camera, make sure you pic up a camera bag, camera strap, SD cards and lens filters.


Selfie / mirrorless camera

We have only had a DSLR for the past 2 years, so when we went to America in 2018, we used a mirrorless camera (Sony A5100), which is like a small DSLR but without the mirror. It is almost as capable as a DSLR and is only small so perfect for fitting into your pocket for any adventure!

Ours is amazing for capturing selfies (with it’s flip screen) and fantastic for filming! We still use this camera all the time, especially if we don’t want to carry around the bulkier DSLR with all the lenses!


Go Pro

We’ve been using Go Pro since our Europe travels in 2016. We use the Go Pro Hero 7, but have previously used the Hero 3 and 4.

It’s probably our favourite camera, purely because of how versatile it is! It’s so tiny that you can take it absolutely anywhere, it’s waterproof and has the most amazing stabilisation feature when filming! It’s very rare you’ll find me without this in my bag – both home and away!

There’s plenty of accessories you can buy with your go pro. We recommend the shorty, and the chest and head straps. Also, make sure to buy a spare battery as the battery life is not so good, especially when in constant use (i.e. when snorkelling etc.).


Dji Spark

Our drone is probably our least travelled piece of equipment BUT it’s one of our favourite!

A drone allows you to take some pretty awesome shots, giving you a different perspective of where you are!

We have the Dji Spark which is one of the small (but mighty) drones on the market. It’s perfect for travelling as it packs up super small and still captures amazing shots!

There are so many drones available but we opted for the Spark as it’s perfect for beginners. It’s simple to set up and operate, and can fit into carry-on luggage!


Tripod

We don’t always use a Tripod but it is pretty handy for those shots where you want everyone in the frame or don’t want to rely on strangers!

We currently have two tripods, although often only travel with one. The smaller tripod is perfect for when we’re at home and just need something to stabilise the camera but our light-weight full-size tripod is the one that we take almost everywhere. It weighs just 500g so is perfect to fit into your luggage allowance!


Camera bag

Camera bags are vital for keeping all your equipment together and protected. Until a few months ago, I just had a medium size camera bag, that just about fitted the cameras and one lens in. However, we decided it was time for an upgrade and opted for something more practical so purchased the Wandrd Prive 21l. This bag is amazing, it has a compartment for everything, and doubles up as a daypack.

Camera bags don’t need to be pricey, just somewhere to store all your equipment, but I personally think the Wandrd is well worth the investment for those who love travel and photography.


iPhone

Whilst we love having our DSLR and go pro, nothing quite beats the practicality and convenience of a phone – i’m not sure where we’d be without them! I don’t know anyone that doesn’t have a smartphone nowadays, and this piece of kit has been VITAL on our travels. It has been the only consistent item since we first went away back in 2016 (even when I went away back in 2013).

The quality of photos has increased as we’ve upgraded over the years, but the reliability has remained the same. We don’t go anywhere without our phones, so they’re perfect to act as a camera, satnav, booking system and boarding pass all at the same time!

We both use the iPhone 11.


Storage / External Hard Drive

Backing up photos and videos is SO important! We back up EVERYTHING just incase iCloud disappears or my phone breaks… I’ve been victim to a broken hard drive and the feeling of not knowing whether your photos are going to make it can be quite heartbreaking! I have learnt from my mistakes and now make sure to not only back up to multiple hard drives but also to a cloud service such as Knowhow, Google Photos or iCloud.

We use the Passport for Mac hard drive. It’s great as it comes in so many different sizes, isn’t too big and has no moving parts (so it’s harder to damage!!).


Charging

When travelling with a lot of electrical items, we think a portable charger / powerbank is a must – you never know when you might need to give your devices a bit of extra juice!!

Ours has saved us on numerous occasions, whether we’ve been out and about and a device has run out of charge, or been in a hotel / apartment with limited power sockets.


Editing

The Creative Cloud ‘Photography Plan’ is a must for avid photographers. It includes lightroom, photoshop and storage, so is great for editing all your shots!

The amazing thing about the editing software is you can use them on both a computer and on your mobile device. I have lightroom set up on my macbook and iPhone so I can edit our pictures whenever and wherever.

Although it doesn’t come on EVERY trip with us, my Mac laptop often makes an appearance. It’s great for editing and sorting all our footage. We store everything on the hard drive and then do our edits on Lightroom, using custom presets. If the mac is too bulky to take, we always have our iPads on us which often suffice.

We use: Apple MacBook Pro 13″


Wish list

We probably haven’t even scratched the surface in terms of equipment but like I said, we are in no way professionals and just have the equipment that works for us (especially with limited luggage allowance and a low budget!!). I have a list as long as my arm of all the upgrades / extras I would LOVE to travel with but for now, what we have is plenty good enough!

We hope this has provided you with a bit of an insight into how we capture our shots and what equipment we carry.

Any questions that we haven’t covered in this post, just ask!!

Adios for now,

Char & Mar x

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