My Camera Gear for Blogging-Camera

By October 19, 2014Photography Tips

Camera

Canon 5D Mark III w/ Battery Grip

After months of research I selected the Canon 5D Mark III. I’m super happy with my decision. Here is why this camera kicks ass:

Amazing Autofocus

The autofocus capabilities of this camera are really good. Coming from a camera that had 10 AF points I love that this camera has 61 points of autofocus and multiple autofocus point selection options. I use single point autofocus 99% of the time so that means I can set my autofocus point in a spot that minimizes the amount I have to move the camera back and forth between focusing and shooting the picture. Ultimately that leads to more shots ending up properly focused.

This camera includes a setting called AI Servo. Which let’s the camera decide on what to focus on. It does this milliseconds before the photo is taken. I believe this option is available with other Canon models but with all of the autofocus points this is certainly more accurate. You can go adjust settings that help guide the camera regarding what it autofocuses on. For instance you can set it up so that it always autofocuses on a moving subject that you originally focus on (such as a model walking) or you can change the setting to focus on moving objects quickly entering the frame (like a duck flying over your head).

Great color

As soon as I started using this camera I noticed a huge difference in the colors of my images. They were more vibrant and they more closely represented the image I was trying to create. We’re fashion bloggers so we love a good backlighting situation. With my old camera these were my least favorite pictures because there was no detail or color in the picture basically we had to backlight out of necessity since it was the only way to get proper exposure. It could be a combination of my improved photography skills with the quality of this camera but there is huge difference in our backlit photos from before.

Excellent performance at higher ISO

I prefer to shoot at the lowest ISO possible to keep my images clear and crisp. Sometimes the lighting situation doesn’t allow for low ISOs. Even with ISOs into the thousands the image quality is much better than my previous 60D.

Photographers have mixed opinions about the battery grip. The two biggest arguments against using one are the cost and the extra size. I love my battery grip because I get double the battery length, the camera fits better in my hand and there is a 2nd trigger  (and other controls) that are more natural to use when shooting portrait photos.

 Solid LCD Display

Often times I’ll shoot pictures and look at them on the LCD screen as we go through the photoshoot. I’m putting a lot of faith in the LCD screen properly representing the picture that I took. Sometimes when I open the images in Lightroom the lighting is completely different than I thought I was seeing during the shoot; this is much less frequent now that I own this camera.

I don’t think I ever could have created an image like the one below with a lower quality camera.

lausanne-switzerland-ouchy-port-sunset-golden-hour

 

Tips for anyone that’s looking to upgrade their camera now but can’t just buy the top of the line camera

Anyone looking to buy a new camera should first consider doing major research, renting before buying and plan for your future as a photographer. The last thing you want to do is

Research

I probably spent at least 10-15 hours researching cameras before making my final decision. I recommend that if you are in the market for a new camera you should spend considerable time researching and narrowing down the models that you are interested in. Without boring you too much I prefer to use decision making methods that consider multiple factors by assigning scores and weight factors by importance. My big factors when making my camera decision were Price, Reputation for high performance/positive reviews online, Unique Features of the camera model, Full Frame Sensor and Auto Focusing Performance. Since I knew I was serious about photography, Price weighed less on my decision than other factors such as positive reviews/performance reputation and Auto Focusing performance.

Note- I recommend that you check camera rumor websites to see if there have been any leaks or hints about upcoming camera models.

Rent

Let’s say that you’ve narrowed down your decision to two cameras. In my case I was either going to get the 1DX or 5D Mark III. You could either find a photographer friend with the model camera you are interested in and then beg them to let you borrow their camera or you can save your friendship and rent the camera. I’m a fan of Lumoid but BorrowLenses is also good. Since renting does cost money and trying out two cameras at the same time might be hard to handle, I say that you start with renting the camera that you are leaning towards. Make sure that you plan on renting the camera during a time period where you plan on taking plenty of pictures. Put yourself in as many different situations as you can so you can really see how that camera performs. If you find that you don’t love that model then rent the other one. At the end of the day renting helps reduce the risk of making a big purchase that you’ll regret.

Plan for the future

I’ve jumped deep into more hobbies than I would care to admit. I burned out of most of these within a year of starting them. I think I’ve finally realized that properly forecasting the future is really important. I was willing to get a top of the line camera because I knew that I’d be using the camera 2-7 days a week for at least the next couple of years. We used our previous Canon 60D until it was falling apart, we owned it for 2.5 years. I advise that you be honest with yourself about your demands for the future. Are you still going to be blogging in a year? Would you use the camera outside of the blog, especially if you quit your blog? These are the things you should ask yourself.

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