When they asked me to prepare an article for the international Fujifilm blog and to talk about what I kept in my camera bag, I had two contrasting emotions. The first said, “Ah cool! I’m a lucky guy!”. The second, more concrete, said “Yes, great.. but I use completely different equipment according to what I must photograph. And concerning bags and backpacks, I have at least five…”
Weighing them up with my interviewer, I asked him if I could tell you about an event which I always like to hold: an off-camera flash management workshop in partnership with one of the most important photography shops in Milan; New Old Camera. My proposal was accepted immediately. Thus, here I am talking to you about what I carry around if I have to shoot in a situation where I have to recreate the light that interests me mixing it with the ambient light.
First of all, I have not mentioned everything which is complementary and absolutely necessary for a fashion or lifestyle shoot outside of a traditional photography studio; the stands, tripods and light modifiers that, alone, occupy a big cart and much of of the trunk in the car.
Instead, I will concentrate on the equipment on a purely technological side: cameras, lenses, flashes and triggers.
Let’s start with backpack no.1:
Firstly, the bag: one of the best purchases in recent years, a ThinkTank Airport Essentials. The only one which you can always carry on board in an airplane even when there is no more space in the overhead. Its dimensions are small enough to allow it to be placed under the seat in front of you. And the capacity is extraordinary ... look what it can hold...
The second backpack was dedicated to the most powerful strobe, able to overpower of the sun - recreating the most suitable light from scratch.
This backpack consisted of:
A portion of the material contained in these two backpacks is not even used, but it is always better to have a few more pieces present at the time of the shooting.
The workshop was developed in two sessions of twenty people in the morning and the same number in the afternoon. We initially shot with the X-Pro2 and the EF-42 using TTL assisted by the cables for synchronization.
Then we went on to use the Profoto B1 managing the power manually combined with the Fuji X100T that can sync up to 1/2000 in this configuration by starting the shot with IR trigger.
With regards to HighSpeedSync - I am waiting in anticipation for the arrival of the new EF-X500 flash scheduled to be released soon. This will finally allow me to shoot up to 1/8000 on the X-Pro2!
After the X100T, was the return of the X-Pro2 combined with the old Nikon flashes to achieve a portrait with a fake sunset behind the model.
The day was very fruitful with a lot of positive feedback from the participants. The flash light is a creature that one needs to know how to tame to be able to make it natural and bend it to our needs... When you can pull it off, the outcome is extraordinary!
Thank you for your patience if you have been reading until this point and I hope to return to be the new host of Fujifilm's blog!
Max De Martino