The 7 Items Every Beginner Photographer Needs
From starter cameras and lenses to bags and tripods, here is everything you need to start snapping professional-quality pics
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Getting started in photography can be a challenge. Because every photographer has a distinct setup that suits their preferences and needs, simply replicating someone else’s equipment ultimately might not work for your own personal photography journey. Not to mention, most professional photographers have expensive gear that’s likely unrealistic for beginners or those who are simply looking to learn a new craft to buy.
To make your jump into photography as simple and inexpensive as possible, we’ve narrowed it down to 7 essential pieces of equipment, useful for any type of photography.
Choosing a camera bag doesn’t have to be an arduous process. While style matters, it shouldn’t reign supreme. How it feels on your back and the gear you can carry is paramount. Additionally, aim to find one that isn’t overly bulky, which helps better store your camera bag when you travel.
For some, buying a camera means searching for the best-reviewed camera and pulling the trigger. However, spending $5,000-$8,000 isn’t feasible for everyone. And that’s perfectly fine. A starter camera shouldn’t be top of the line, anyway, since a novice likely won’t use all the professional features.
When people ask me about buying a camera, I always tell them to figure out their budget and stick with it. I also recommend piecing your gear together over time. There’s no need to buy multiple lenses at once without understanding what or how you plan to shoot.
You want the most versatility possible without getting to extremes as you look for a lens. At this point in your journey, learning the camera’s in and outs, plus having a focal length that allows you to capture a wide spectrum, is good. However, you likely don’t need a telephoto or ultra-wide-angle lens.
A tripod is the one thing on this list that isn’t needed but is nice to have. It’ll allow you to shoot in low-light situations, capture the milky way, or create a silky-smooth water scene. You’ll find numerous tripods on the market, but this is the one I have. It’s perfect for hiking and backpacking and stores nicely when traveling.
Camera Cleaning Tools
Camera cleaning tools are necessary for every photographer regardless of age, years of shooting, or income. Having a dust blower and lens wipes are the two most essential parts of the kit. The spray is a nice add-on if dust dries on your lens and the blower can’t get it off. A tip for new photographers, bring your camera cleaning supplies everywhere you go.
128GB memory card
You can go higher or lower, but at 128GB, this memory card should have plenty of space for new photographers and comes in at a reasonable price point.
Never. Get caught. With dead batteries. I had this happen in Havasupai, and it was a disaster. So, it’s paramount to have extra batteries on hand that let you keep clicking away with no interruption. It might seem easy to pick an off-brand, but I’d recommend against this. There is a big difference between choosing the brand’s battery and a third party.
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