Tools of the Trade for a Family Photographer in Ann Arbor
I thought I would follow up with my recent submission on the NAPCP blog, with a little more detail about my equipment, including what is on my desk, that ensures my clients get beautiful images from their family session.
What’s in my fabulous bag:
1. Camera: Canon 5d markiii
I love this camera. Not only is the color and clarity amazing, but having an af system with 61 focal points to choose from makes getting tack sharp images that are NOT centered, a lot easier than my old camera. I can simply set my exposure and color, then let the kiddos run while I track them by simply using the little joystick.
I used to shoot exclusively with prime lenses; which means I could shoot at wide apertures, but I could not zoom in or out with the lens. Instead, I ran around like a crazy person, chopped a lot limbs in my compositions, and missed some shots because I was too close or too far away. Most of my clients have littles ones under the age of five. And they are on. the. MOVE. I prefer to embrace rather than fight their energy, so a zoom lens became a must. I could be close if the little ones needed more interaction from me, or back up if they like their space. I find the 24-70 gets the job done, while the 135 lets me create magic with compression and sharpness. My Sigma Art lens lives on my camera for indoor sessions and pretty much from November – March when I am shooting in my own house. I can shoot at 2.0 and consistently hit focus. It is a beautiful lens.
3. Expodisc 2.0
This has been one of the least expensive investments I have made in my gear, but one of the best in getting my images right in camera. I much prefer to spend my time shooting than editing. I try to arrive to the session before my clients do, so I can set my white balance with this little thing. Most of the time it is spot on, and I only have to make minor if any adjustments in Lightroom.
What’s on My Desk
The monitor is UH-Mazing for editing. The sleek design also keeps my desk uncluttered.
In addition to saving the images to my hard drive, I have an external hard drive that I back up my images on. This past fall I tried editing a session when we were having a series of power outages. Thank goodness I had the images in 2 places (I also keep them on the memory card until they are safely uploaded for ordering too) because I lost my edits on three occasions. It was nerve wracking. As a result, I invested in Crashplan. This software runs at all times and copies everything from my hard drive at all times. I don’t have to remember to do anything except pay the annual bill.
3. Monitor Calibration System
My Color Munki ensures that colors are accurate, and most importantly, my prints will match my monitor. Have you ever noticed that an article of clothing you viewed and ordered online arrived and the color was not at all what you were expecting? Or remember the last time you bought a new television? Do you remember standing there and looking at the screens wondering why the colors were all slightly different across the different brands? My husband and I decided that Sony’s color was “right” with how we see the world. 😉 Anyway, you can calibrate your monitor to ensure that the color is the same as the printing lab’s color.
While I think my photographs have a natural simplicity, you can see that a lot of professional equipment and education is needed to achieve this look. I hope you enjoyed learning more about my tools for creating and making memorable photographs.
Please contact me to discuss your session.
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