I’ve got such a romance with my new camera that I decided to bling it up a little- get those costly accessories that people usually take a moment to think “do I REALLY need this stuff?” Of course, that’s what Christmas is for- buying junk you don’t really need. On the other hand, these are the accessories that make shooting/ traveling a more pleasurable experience, and the more you enjoy shooting the more you do it, and I definitely feel I should be shooting more often.
1. the Fuji Vertical Grip – holding one extra battery and making it more ergonomic to shoot portrait style. It also turns your formerly small camera into something much larger. This was a gift from my wife, and for sure it’ll get used in every studio shooting scenario where I do maybe 90% of my shooting vertically.
As far as travel use, it may be equally convenient to just have a spare battery in my pocket than keep the grip on. We often choose mirrorless cameras like the XT1 for being lightweight and unobtrusive- no need to throw out those two qualities in the environment where it counts the most.
2. I also got a simple eyecup replacement fit for the X-T1. I do all of my framing within the viewfinder and for $15 you get something that blocks out glare and accommodates eyeglasses- $15 for something you’ll use all the time and makes the shooting experience more pleasant.
3. The Think Tank Perception photo backpack, supremely light at just over 2 lbs. It’s got a great system for weight distribution and accessibility- the camera and lenses sit at the top of the main compartment with open space for the accessories below. It’s able to carry the X-T1, 2 extra lenses, my GoPro Hero 4 + accessories, Fuji Neo Classic Instax camera + 3 packs of film, and a 15 inch MacBook Pro with no effort and all the while looking pretty nondescript. By contrast, my older packs were bulky, filled with useless padding, put all the weight in the wrong space, and screamed to the world “photo gear right here.” As much as I discourage my students from spending time and money buying photo bags… new/ different systems call for new bags. And a shooting experience with the wrong bag is more often than not a miserable event.
4. I’ve also added a LCD screen protector on the massive LCD, new batteries bringing my current total of spare batteries to 4, and faster 32gb cards- 95 mb/s because the write speed felt ludicrously slow.
All of these seem small but it’s funny how quickly that Amazon shopping cart fills up and reaches three digits. In context though, I can’t begin to fathom how much I’d have to spend on film, chemicals and paper in the pre-digital revolution days.
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