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Thread: Useful items in your bag (that other smart photographers forget)

  1. #1
    Land-Scapegrace Heroique's Avatar
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    Useful items in your bag (that other smart photographers forget)

    Over the years, I’ve added a lot of items to my field kit that no LF book or manual would ever think of recommending. Mainly, they’re small items that didn’t occur to me either – until I sorely needed them. Afterwards, they won a permanent place in my kit.

    For example, I once composed a shot that would have been ideal, except for a nearby tree branch that blocked the view. I had no way of removing it (it was too big to break off ), and placing the tripod elsewhere wasn’t an option either. “If only I had some twine,” I thought. Now, I never leave home w/o several yards worth. And I’ve tied back countless branches, taken the shot, released the trees from their temporary bondage, and continued along my way...

    Tell us – what’s that useful item in your bag that others want to hear about?

  2. #2
    Octogenarian
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    Re: Useful items in your bag (that other smart photographers forget)

    A micro cloth for cleaning filters and lenses.

    A small spirit level.

    Proper step-up rings to adapt screw-in filters to every size lens in the kit.

    An extra cable release.

  3. #3

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    Re: Useful items in your bag (that other smart photographers forget)

    Small pliers (in a pocket knife), sometimes when shooting in the cold i tie the knots too tight.

    A notebook to write down everything about the shot, and if i need to compensate in developing later on.

  4. #4
    Kirk Gittings's Avatar
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    Re: Useful items in your bag (that other smart photographers forget)

    National Park Service photography rules, for the benefit of over-zealous rangers who don't know their own rules.
    Thanks,
    Kirk

    at age 67
    "The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
    But I have promises to keep,
    And miles to go before I sleep,
    And miles to go before I sleep"

  5. #5

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    Re: Useful items in your bag (that other smart photographers forget)

    Small Mag Light flashlight.

  6. #6

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    Re: Useful items in your bag (that other smart photographers forget)

    - Tape measurer to calculate f-stops for unmarked lenses
    - Super glue
    - Leatherman
    - Paper plates to prevent the tripod to sink on the beach/loose soil
    - Umbrella to shield from the wind
    - Next time I'll bring a small portfolio

  7. #7

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    Re: Useful items in your bag (that other smart photographers forget)

    I like a bright orange (hard not to see) torpedo level - more accurate than the bubble level on the camera and less easily left behind - it fits into my back pocket.

    I finally got a small digital voice recorder as I've finally realized I WON'T remember the settings/details in five minutes when I dig out the notebook to finally write things down - I can do it later and edit my audio ramblings without missing the details.

    A loud whistle - haven't needed it, but who knows...

    A spare tripod head screw as the one on my Gitzo head can back out and I'd hate to find it missing when I finally get to where I've been walking towards.

    More film that I think I'll need.

    DOF tables for my set of lenses customized to my typical working requirements

    (i really like the small portfolio idea - I used to carry a few images made up like "baseball" cards that were small business card/leave-behinds. I will dig those out again.)

  8. #8
    Land-Scapegrace Heroique's Avatar
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    Re: Useful items in your bag (that other smart photographers forget)

    Quote Originally Posted by Stephane View Post
    - Paper plates to prevent the tripod from sinking on the beach/loose soil.
    Yes, an interesting choice – I carry three, 5”x5” pieces of sturdy, ” foam for the same purpose. (I cut-up one of my old sleeping pads, after I upgraded to a Therm-a-rest.) Mainly, they’re for firm sand or soft, moist soil – not snow patches or muddy slush. They arrest any slow, imperceptible sinking by the tripod, esp. during longer exposures.

    I’ve also been packing a folded-up black garbage bag too, which takes up no room and weighs nothing. Great for draping over my camera when a light mist blows in (or a sudden downpour!) – and protecting my (inserted) film holder from direct sunlight (and dust) when I’m waiting, waiting, waiting for the wind to calm. Sometimes, the trash bag serves as a mat when I’m laying items on the ground for quick access near my tripod – though I typically use a lightweight poncho for this, whose edges I flip onto sensitive items for more protection.

  9. #9

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    Re: Useful items in your bag (that other smart photographers forget)

    A Swiss Army knife with a #2 phillips screwdriver blade.
    A black shower curtain(waterproof dark cloth)
    A "miniature" bottle of peppermint schnapps(for me.)
    A "miniature" bottle of vodka(for cleaning lenses.)
    Big blue rubber bands salvages from supermarket broccolli (handy replacments if the "elasticator" on my Lee filter holder breaks or flys away)
    And sometimes,
    a saxophone (to practice if I have to wait for the light.)
    I steal time at 1/125th of a second, so I don't consider my photography to be Fine Art as much as it is petty larceny.
    I'm not OCD. I'm CDO which is alphabetically correct.

  10. #10
    Marc! munz6869's Avatar
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    Re: Useful items in your bag (that other smart photographers forget)

    A current Metro trains amateur photography permit - a useful document even in other places
    An ipod touch - many distracting apps to while away the hours, notes, calculator, etc
    Instruction manual for complicated light meter - needing this less now :-)
    A nice pen
    A plastic rain poncho
    A Tilley Bucket Hat
    Other things I intend to plagiarise from the excellent ideas above...

    Marc!
    Marc Morel
    ------------
    http://mrmarcmorel.wordpress.com/

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