Photography Gear We Love

In a former life, I had a severe case of G.A.S.: Gear Acquisition Syndrome. Well, after years of packing and unpacking bags for road gigs, carrying too much stuff from shoot to shoot, and realizing I spent WAY too much on stuff I don’t use, I’ve begun scaling down my rig. As we test, evaluate, and report on our equipment, we’ll update this list.

I’ve become somewhat of a minimalist which goes against my gear pack-rat nature. A few years ago, I wanted to put together a full cinematic video rig that would fit in a medium to large backpack, and still be small enough to carry on when I fly.

So here’s the list of photo and video gear that is getting put through the paces right now and that takes up residence in my Shimoda Designs Explore 60 bag. Truth be told, I’ll swap items out depending on the job, but this is the main stuff:

Camera Bodies

2 x Canon 5D Mark III bodies – sure it’s slightly outdated tech but today’s mirrorless standards, but the 5Ds are tanks. I beat the Hell out of them and they just keep going because you can’t do better than the Canon weather sealing.

Canon C100 Mark II video camera – no, it’s not a 4K camera, but my clients right now only put their video on the web so 1080p is still working for the jobs I do. The Canon CLOG profile gives me incredible dynamic range. As a run-and-gun documentary style filmmaker, this fits my workflow perfectly

GoPro Hero 7 Black – because you always need to have a camera that can go anywhere, get beat up, and still keep ticking. Plus, it’s my 4K-in-a-pinch camera


All by Canon

  • 24-105 f/4 IS L
  • 16-35 f/2.8 IS L II
  • 70-200 f/2.8 IS L II
  • 50mm f/1.8 (the nifty fifty)
  • 40mm pancake lens
  • 300mm f/4 IS L

Lighting Equipment

Stella 2000 daylight balanced constant light – I was given this light as a gift during the 2018 Portrait Masters conference. This is a PERFECT travel companion for bigger jobs where I can’t use strobes.

2 x Litra Pro LED Adventure lights – tiny, waterproof, bi-color LEDs. I keep finding more and more uses for these powerhouses.

Flashpoint EVOLV 200 strobe – like a speedlight on steroids

Flashpoint XPLOR 600 strobe – battery powered 600 WS strobe that goes with me to every job. Who needs big battery packs?

Glow portable octabox

Elinchrom 39″ Rotalux deep octabox


Rocket blower – gotta keep that dust away!

MeFoto RoadTrip Travel Tripod

Manfrotto 55CXPRO3 Carbon Fiber tripod

Motorized Cinema Gear

FreeFly MoVI Cinema Robot  – when I only have my iPhoneX with me, this is a great gimbal with a ton of features

Wiral Cable Cam – I got drawn in by the capabilities of it when I saw this system on Kickstarter, and it’s perfect when you can’t fly a drone.

Zhiyun Crane (v1) gimbal

Rhino EVO motorized slider with Rhino Motion and Arc v1 – goes with me to every video job and is a lifesaver when working alone as an interviewer, or when I need to replicate complex shots

Rhino ROV PRO Traveller mobile motorized slider – a great little travel companion, perfect for iPhone slider moves

Popular Post:

Related Posts:

Generator Ep. 011 – Nicole York: Goddess of her Own Universe

In this episode, Maine photographer Matt Stagliano speaks with Nicole York: author, photographer, digital artist, educator, and creative visionary behind The Artist’s Forge. Nicole is the quintessential artist, mastering her craft in nearly everything she does, and is also one of the smartest people in the industry.

Generator Ep. 010 – Dennis Dunbar: The Man Behind the Movie Posters

In this episode, viewers will hear from Maine-based portrait photographer, Matt Stagliano, as he interviews Hollywood retoucher and digital artist Dennis Dunbar.

Dennis is the man behind some of the most iconic movie posters in the film industry, like Blair Witch Project, I Am Legend, 1832, Deadpool, Jumanji, and the list goes on and on…

From the early days of Photoshop to modern color grading techniques, from film to frequency separation, we talk about it all. If you ever wanted to get a feel for what it’s like to work as an integral part of the commercial and film industries, this is a conversation for you.

You can find more of Dennis’ work at his website,

Related Posts:

Let’s Socialize