Well, let’s start with the number one question – what do you shoot with?! I am a Nikon girl through and through. There is no reason why I shoot with Nikon other than it is how I started, and after investing tens of thousands of dollars, I can’t switch. Literally 75% of my mentors, idols, etc shoot Canon, and while there is some envy – I truly LOVE my Nikon gear.
Another thing you will notice is that I shoot 99.9% of my work on prime lenses. While I have telephoto lens, nothing compares to the way a prime lens reads light.
What’s in My Bag – Nikon D5 Camera Body
I LOVE, let me repeat, LOVE my Nikon D5. This camera body has by far the highest quality, most prestine photo capability I have seen (Note* The D5 came out right before the D850 and I have not yet upgraded my second camera body to the 850, but do plan to). There is a very hefty price tag with it, but it is an investment that is worth its weight in gold.
I also have a backup camera body in my bag at all times, and that is my Nikon D750. Prior to the D5 upgrade, I had two of these bad boys and they served me very well. After upgrading to the D5, I very very very rarely use this body simply because the quality is night and day in RAW format.
Yes, you read the above correctly. While I have multiple camera bodies, I only shoot on one camera for the wedding day. There are a few rare times where I will clip both into my Spyder Holster but quite honestly, I like working off one body. All personal preference right?
Lastly, I have a Nikon F100 film camera on me at all times. Film is a DREAM to me and while I usually chicken out on wedding day and don’t use it, I’m working towards it. You will see me bust it out on style shoots or portrait sessions, however.
What’s in My Bag – Lens Choices
Over the years I have been able to add more and more lenses to my bag, but this was NOT something that was possible from day one, and not something I recommend doing even if you could. When I first started, I basically bought the lenses that my mentors and idols were using and to be quite honest, I knew absolutely nothing about the lens, whether or not I would use them and wasted A LOT of money.
A note I want to make: When purchasing lenses, quality DOES matter. There have been lenses I have bought that were cheaper in price and trust me when I tell you they were replaced as quickly as I could afford it. If you are in the market for a new lens, do your research. Do NOT buy Gray Market Lenses…something will go wrong, and it will not be covered. Trust me again – this just happened and I lost $1299 overnight.
What’s in my Bag – 85 mm 1.8 Nikkor Lens
While not the first lens I would buy, by FAR my favorite lens. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this lens. This is my most heavily used lens, and is on my camera body 75% of the time during any given portrait session. The bokeh on this lens is unmatched, and it is just a dream. It is sharp, lightweight and simply put – my favorite.
What I use this lens for: Portraits, Portraits and more Portraits. Also some ceremonies.
*This is my next lens to upgrade. I will either upgrade to the Nikkor 1.4 or switch to the new Sigma Art 85.
What’s in my bag – 50mm 1.4 Sigma Art
The lens I think every photographer should have is the 50 mm lens. I LOVE the Sigma Art Series as you can see from my below purchases. This lens is another work horse. This lens is on my camera body about 50% of the time during the wedding day. It is lightweight, versatile, and sharp as can be!!!
What I use this lens for: Details, Portraits, Reception
What’s in my bag – 105 mm Sigma
A newer addition to my bag, this macro lens is used more than you would think. I originally started with the Tamron 90 mm lens, but did not love the way it read light and upgraded this year. This lens is a fun lens to play with simply because it does much more than detail shots..
What I use this lens for: Details, Portraits, Ceremony
What’s in my bag – 35mm 1.4 Sigma Art
While one of my least used lens for the wedding day, the 35mm lens is integral to my day. This was a lens that I bought because EVERYONE else did – and I regretted that quite a bit. While this lens has saved me in tight bridals suites & huge bridal party situations, it wasn’t one I pulled out often. Over the years, I have learned the benefit of the 35 mm, but still choose to limit it’s uses. I will ALWAYS have this lens on me for the wedding day because of the aforementioned situations, but will only use it when I have to until we start the reception. I LOVE the 35 mm for dancing photos. I recently pushed myself to use other lenses during this part of the day, and honestly, I did not love them anywhere near as much as I love the look of the 35 mm.
What I use this lens for: Invitation Suites, Large Bridal Parties or Family Shots, Dancing Shots
What’s in my bag – 135 mm Sigma Art
My newest lens, the 135 mm is a GOD SENT!! I love this lens!!! I’m not going to lie, shooting a ceremony on a 70-200 is a drrraaagg for me. That lens is the heaviest, darkest, grainest lens ever. The 135 prime is everything opposite of that.
What I use this lens for: Ceremonies
What’s in my bag – 70-200 mm Nikkor Lens
While this lens is 100% my LEAST favorite lens, it is a necessity. I have bought and sold this lens twice now, thinking I could get away with not having it, and unfortunately, you do need it. This lens is ONLY used for ceremonies for me. I know many many people who use it for portraits but it’s far too heavy for me to do that. I also don’t love shooting at a 2.8 aperture…
What I use this lens for: ONLY Ceremonies
What’s in my bag – 24-70 mm Nikkor Lens
Like the above, this was a lens I bought because everyone else had it. I’ve seen some pretty epic shots done with the 24-70. I go through cycles of using this lens, but because of the higher aperture, I tend to use a prime before ever pulling this lens out. I also don’t love the distortion this lens creates.
What I use this lens for: Large Bridal Party or Family Shots, Epic environmental shots (Super tall tree, building, etc )
Any Questions?! Feel free to comment or shoot me a quick message! I’m happy to help!