As a professional photographer, one of the more frequent questions I am asked especially by the guys is what camera I use or what is the best camera. The ‘best camera’ part of the question is always answered in the same way. ‘The best camera is the camera is the camera you have with you’ Nowadays most people always have a camera with them. I always have my iPhone with me and captured some wonderful photos, sure image quality may not be as good as my DSLR’s but it’s infinitely better than having no camera on me at all.

The image below was taken on iPhone 5s in very typical British weather i.e rain. It’s one of my favorite shots of the day, sure a DSLR picture would have been sharper, but the DSLR would not have been so oblivious to the couple and I may not have captured this spontaneous moment of joy in the bleak weather.

A couple enjoy an impromptu dance at the Rewind Festival Henley on Thames

Now for the fun bit, what’s actually in my bag. Typically when I photograph a wedding I will have 3 DSLR’s on me, mainly for 2 reasons. Currently a Nikon D3, Nikon D600 and a D7000

  1. It saves time swapping lens with cameras, i.e. one camera has a 24-70mm lens on it and the other has a 70-200 on it.
  2. Just in case something goes wrong or gets damaged, I always have a backup camera.

As with the camera, I also will have carry 2 flashguns or speedlights for when it gets a bit dark or I need to control the lighting. A little bit of flash can add some punch to a photograph. For some venues, a battery pack and small studio lights are required for when things get 2 dark for Speedlights.

On assignment, I will have about 5 lenses with me from a very wide angle fish eye lens to 200mm telephoto.

That’s the main stuff I carry, along with that there are about 30 memory cards, gaffer tape (just in case) and lens cleaning tissues.

All of this stuff gets really heavy during the day, it all weighs about 15kg which takes it’s toll after 8 hours on my feet.

All of this photography kit gets very heavy after a few hours

So the million dollar question. What camera do I want? There are so many answers to that one, and my wish list grows longer all the time if I were to answer that pragmatically it would be another professional DSLR such as the Nikon D5, a robust camera that takes all the knocks and spills of wedding and event photography assignments. On a personal note, the new breed of mirrorless cameras seems a very interesting proposition. The Leica SL looks really good all round camera, I have really started lusting after it especially having seen competitors on the Sky Arts Program ‘The Master of Photography‘ using it. Unfortonuantley it’s way out of my price range so this camera remains a distant dream.

The Leica SL a great camera, but currently out of my price range

Another camera that I would love to try out is the Hasselblad X1-D,  using a medium format camera to photograph a wedding or photographing my favorite city Venice while on vacation would be amazing. Sadly at the moment another camera beyond my budget.

A mirrorless medium format camera