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While we all know that I’m the worst at editing my photos in a timely fashion, I do get a lot of love on my photos (when I eventually post them), so I thought it would be fun to talk about what’s in my camera bag when I travel! While I have a small mirrorless camera, today I’m talking about my Canon system. For reference, I shoot with a Canon 5D Mark II and a Canon 5D Mark IV.
Photography is definitely one of my passions, but it’s not cheap. I was really excited when I found the Canon refurbished lens site; I ordered one lens to try it out last year. It was sharp as a tack and absolutely perfect! I have no qualms about recommend that you use this site, particularly when they have the additional 15% off sales!
What’s In My Camera Bag? Prime Lenses
Canon 50mm, f/1.2L
My (true) introduction to travel photography started with the 50mm lens. It was never what was in my camera bag, it is what was on my camera almost all the time. Before I upgraded to the f/1.2L version, I used the nifty fifty, upgraded to the slightly better version, and eventually bit the bullet and purchased the professional lens. The 50mm lens does a great job in any and all lighting conditions. It is particularly powerful in low light situations. I love the way that I can make the colors pop or fade into bright sunlight. (It’s also a great lens for portrait photography.) I’ve gotten so much mileage out of this particular lens that it’s one of the first lenses I recommend to people who want to take their photography to the next level.
Canon 85mm, f/1.8 USM
When I did wedding photography, I absolutely loved the 85mm f/1.8 for candid shots during the reception. It has beautiful bokeh when you shoot wide open, it’s sharp, and the price is fairly budget-friendly. Once you master the 85mm, it is a great addition to the 50mm. I’ve never shot with the (much) more expensive version, but I’ve heard it’s really heavy. Personally, with this lens, I’ve never thought I needed to upgrade what’s in my camera bag. This is another awesome lens for portraits and AND travel. The lightweight makes it easy for me to drop in my bag, even when I think I don’t need it. (I really should pull it out more often than I do.)
Canon 200mm, f/2.8L II USM
Guys. The Canon 200mm lens is heavy. Really heavy. I purchased the 135mm to give me a little more versatility. (It’s a little lighter and it’s a little more versatile.) Let’s just be clear, the 200mm is tough to travel with. I haven’t used the 200mm too often, but it is very, very sharp. The colors are beautiful, too. I have had a hard time using it with a tripod (because of the weight), but if you’ve got strong arm muscles, this would be a great option if you want to shoot long-range distances or detail shots. I can’t wait to edit more pictures from this lens though – I think I’ve got some keepers to share!
Canon 35mm, f/1.4L
My mom purchased the Canon 35mm f/1.4L for me as a Christmas gift! My friend Erin said it will change my life, and it did. I love the 35mm lens as much (if not more than) my 50mm. I feel like the color profile calibration with this lens is stronger than the wider 24mm. The 35mm does well in tight spaces, but doesn’t create the same photo distortion as the 17-35mm or the 24mm lens. Both of those lenses clean up well in post-processing, but this lens is great for getting exactly what I want SOOC (straight out of the camera).
Canon 24mm, f/1.4L II USM
Tom got me the Canon 24mm, f1.4L lens for Christmas, even though my wide angle lens covers this focal length. I’m excited to have a similar aperture range to what I have on the 35mm and the 50mm. This sun flare in Florence made me a believer in this lens! The 24mm lens is so fun to experiment with and it does really well in mid afternoon sunlight and bright days. I’ve also found that it’s the most versatile lens for photographing interiors. It hasn’t met a European hotel room that it can’t photograph (though Cinque Terre gave it a run for its money).
The Wide Angle Lens
Canon 16-35mm, f/2.8L
My wide angle 16-35mm lens is my second most used lens! It’s fairly lightweight for L-glass and it’s extremely versatile. I LOVE it for travel photography, but there can be a little bit of distortion when you shoot extremely wide. It also doesn’t have the same aperture range as the prime lenses, but it does really well in low light. This lens did an awesome job shooting fireworks when we were at the Ritz Carlton Dove Mountain for the 4th of July. One of the reasons I really love this lens is because of the different ways you can frame shots. Believe it or not, the picture below was shot using the my wide lens, not a zoom lens!
What’s in your camera bag when you travel? Do you have a favorite lens?? Are there any gems that I’ve missed?