“You take great pictures!â€¦ You must have a nice camera.”
I understand when I hear the statement above that itâ€™s meant to be a complimentâ€¦ but, I feel that it takes away from a photographerâ€™s imagination and creativity. Sure, having the latest technology in cameras, lenses, and strobes can assist in capturing a nice imageâ€¦ but, the most important tool in creating a great image isÂ the photographerâ€™s â€śeyeâ€ť.
â€śA camera didnâ€™t make a great picture anymore than a typewriter wrote a great novelâ€ť -Peter Adams
With that saidâ€¦ hereâ€™s the gear that I use when covering youth sports :
- Nikon D3s â€“ My primary body usually coupled with the 300mm. This combination is great for getting shots from the 1st and 3rd base side of a ballfield. If I need more reach, Iâ€™ll throw on a 1.4x teleconverter giving me 420mm to work with. If I need more, Iâ€™ll throw the lens combination on the D2X giving me 630mm.
–Â Nikon D2XÂ – Now my second body, this camera has served me well for several years as my primary body. Iâ€™ve only experienced one major problem and that was a blown shutter at 320k actuationsâ€¦ not bad since itâ€™s only rated at 150k. I usually have the 80-200mm attached to the body hanging from a BlackRapid camera strap.
– Nikon D2HÂ – This is the body I purchased to replaced my first DSLR (Nikon D1) after it took a tumble on the asphalt of a racetrack at 30 MPH. Back then it was â€śtheâ€ť sports camera to have. Itâ€™s been relegated to remote camera duties and the occasional street photography work with a 35mm lens.
– Nikon 300mm F2.8Â – My bread and butter lens. I use it just about every time Iâ€™m out shooting. I originally had aÂ Nikon 400mm F2.8 AF-S II but, that lens was very heavy, to the point that I would leave it home so it wasnâ€™t used much. The 300mm F2.8 is much more versatile.
– Nikon 80-200mm F2.8Â – Great lens to capture pick off plays at 1st and plays in the infield.
- Nikon 28-70mm F2.8Â – I use this for dugout shots and team shots after the game.
– Nikon 17-35mm F2.8Â – The wide angle is great for my remote camera setups.
– Nikon 50mm F1.8
- Nikon 35mm F1.8
– Nikon 1.4x teleconverter
– Sigma 10-20mm F4-5.6
– Nikon SB-800Â flash (2)
– Pocketwizard (2)
– Carbon One monopod
– Think Tank Photo Pixel Pocket RocketÂ – filled with SanDisk 4GB, 8GB, & 16GB Compact Flash cards.
– Giottos Rocket Air Blaster
– Nikon lens pen
- Think Tank Photo Airport TakeOff Rolling Camera Bag â€“ I love this bag! I use it primarily as a rolling bag but, the Airport Takeoff also has straps that converts it into a backpack. As you can see from the image below, it has plenty of room for the gear I use.
–Â Think Tank Photo Modular Skin Set V2.0 and Pro Speed Belt
-Â BlackRapid RS-4 Camera Strap
When the need calls for it, I also bring along my â€śStrobistâ€ť lighting bag:
– Sekonic L-358 flash meter
– Pocketwizard Pre-Trigger cord
– Nikon SU-800 wireless speedlight commander
– Nikon SB-R200 wireless macro flash head (2)
– Nikon SB-800Â flash (2)
– Nikon SB-600Â flash (2)
– PocketWizard (3)
– Manfrotto Magic Arm
– Assorted LumoPro Umbrella swivels and umbrellas (not pictured)
– LumoPro Light Stands (not pictured)
– Assorted Light Boxes, Snoots, and Gobos (not pictured)
– Orbis Ring FlashÂ (not pictured)
– Gaffers tape
First Aid Kit:
I was able to treat this playerâ€™s injury enough to allow him to continue playing (his request). Itâ€™s a great way of making friends.
Hereâ€™s where all the magic is madeâ€¦ my workstation. This is just a short preview as the workstation deserves its own future post.