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Packing for a month-long multi-city trip: my Photography kit

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And so I’m packing for my month-long travel (longer, actually), and as always, the question is, “What do I bring with me?”.

It wasn’t always the case, but now I’m used to travelling light. Sometimes super light. But that’s for a week maximum, while this time I’ll be away for at least a month. I think I’ve been smart in choosing to travel between countries that will have consistent weather all along; only a +/- 10C difference in temperature is forecasted. So clothing shouldn’t be too much of a problem.

With me, the complications with packing for a month come with my gear.
I know I’ll have my laptop and my mobile devices. And I know I won’t bring my drone because there’s no worldwide standard regulation yet and being this an open trip (still) I don’t want to find myself having to leave my drone with any law enforcer.
But photography-wise, with such diverse countries, how do I select the few lenses to put in my backpack? Ideally, I don’t want to have more than 3 lenses. So how do I choose a good and versatile kit?

Decisions, decisions

To see all my options, you can look at my equipment on kit.com: what’s in my photo bag?

After years of DSLR and iPhoneography, I now own a mirrorless system (Fujifilm), allowing me to achieve high quality in my pictures while also travelling light. And I’m in freaking love with my Fujifilm X-T2 camera.
Aside from the image quality (commonly regarded as the best JPEG files straight out of camera), the feeling of the X-T2 in my hands makes me enthusiastic about it. It’s like a natural extension of my arms… And it is a joy to use… And I love the retro style, with all the buttons and dials in the right place. It’s weather-sealed. Etc etc.
Yes, it lacks a full-frame sensor and in-body stabilisation, and I learned to get over that, but I hope these will make their appearance one day in a future model that will not be as expensive as the medium format GFX.

Fujifilm, if you’re reading… ;)

(Final) Choices

Packing for a month, I think I’ll end up bringing 4 lenses with me.

The 10-24mm and the 18-55mm will do for my Landscape/Cityscape photography. And I’ll include the 23mm for street photography (and this is also weather-resistant, while the 10-24mm is not, in case it rains).
But I think that even though it’s a tad heavy, I’ll add the 90mm because it produces gorgeous portraits and could also help me photograph animals without approaching and scaring them too much. It also happens to be the best Fujifilm lens, period, so how could I leave this at home?

On top of that, I’ll pack some needed accessories: my light but sturdy travel tripod, the Pixi tripod and a clamp (all of which fit in a side pocket of my Peak Design backpack). Plus a bunch of small items that help me get better pictures, keep my camera and lenses clean, etc. And, of course, a hard drive for extra backups (the Western Digital Passport is a great option as it works without a laptop, you simply insert the memory card).

Not too many items, as I’ll be carrying all of this in my hand luggage. Because, frankly, I fear something could end up damaged otherwise. And because it’s the gear I’ll have on my shoulders on a daily basis.
Still more than just my iPhone, which was all I had when in Iceland years ago (silly choice, in retrospect).

The List

You can see details of the camera and lenses I mentioned above in my kit.co page, but let’s recap the essentials here:

updates:

One indispensable item I added to my bag is the 70-300mm. It is a gorgeous zoom lens that is suitable for so many different situations that it’s hard to leave it home. It also outputs great image quality, as shown in comparison with the 100-400mm and the 150-600mm in one of my YouTube reviews. On top of that, it accepts both 1.4x and 2x teleconverters. Meaning that in such a small form factor, I effectively bring a 70-600mm. And it’s stabilised and weather resistant as well.

Furthermore, I frequently leave heavy tripods at home now. Particularly when I wander around for a whole day, it is quite a heavy accessory to bring, and my shoulders don’t enjoy it. My solution, light and compact, is versatile clamp that I can attach to many surfaces (or one of the mini tripods mentioned above).
There are expensive options out there, from Really Right Stuff or Leofoto. But I found a much cheaper one on Amazon that is identical to those, and I always recommend it to everyone I meet.

I’m sure there will be more updates to this list soon… Or another article with my top tips added.

And now let’s gooooo!


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fabienb
fabienb
https://fabienb.blog
Creative. Nomad. Photographer. (he/him) /// formerly: Creative Director, UX Lead, DesignOps Manager, Web/Graphic Designer, Photographer, YouTuber, DJ, Public Speaker, Content Creator, AI-enthusiast, Food-Blogger... /// Award-winning Designer and Photographer, published and exhibited worldwide /// also known as Koan (DJ, Design)