What's in my bag on site at Preschools ?

Oct 4

What's in my camera bag on site at Preschools ? 

Being an outdoor portrait and play photographer at kindergartens/ preschools and childcares I have a few favourite items I take along to every shoot that suit this type of preschool photography. 

Lets have a look a what I bring along each day and more importantly WHY ! 

Camera Equipment

1. Camera body x 2 (one for me + for my assistant photographer). 
My favourite body at the moment is the Canon EOS R.  The mirrorless technology with facial/eye tracking is just such a game changer for children's photography.  99% of my images are in focus with apertures of 2.0 - 2.2.  Kids move fast - you need cameras that can aid and assist you rather than slow you down.   Moments are fleeting - and this camera body has been the perfect choice.   Investing in quality gear from the beginning will be a decision you wont regret ! 
TIP : I shoot in AV priority mode with a minimum shutter speed of 1/500th sec- it's my secret sauce - Find out how I do this within the Business of Photography course where I show you how and most importantly WHY I use this mode.  

2. My lens of Choice 

I primarily use a PRIME 50mm Sigma art lens and have done so for the last 8 years.  It's beautiful, it's economical and it's light.  When you are shooting for about 2-3 hours non-stop, the lighter your gear, the better for longevity. 
With this lens, I sit at the 2.2 aperture and feel that is a real sweet spot for this lens.  I literally have taken thousands and thousands of images with this lens and it's such a workhorse !   Ive tried others and they just dont compare ! 
My back up lens is the Canon Series II L series 24-70mm. I use this if I need the zoom capabilities and for group photos.  Because the aperture starts at 2.8 - If I have to use it for individual photos - I do so at 70mm focal length to produce similar results to the 50mm prime lens.  I will also use this lens with bubs if I need to get close to interact (but rarely ! ) . 

I also have a 70-200mm for educator profile photos which is fabulous, flattering and what I call my "pretty lens". 

3.  I have a flash.... Canon 430 ex II flash but it only comes out of my bag for group photos.    I don't use flash for individual portraits.  It just is too overwhelming for most little ones.   I also have a light modifier to soften if I need for class photos/ occasionally for staff photos. 

4. Lowepro zippered roller case camera bag .  It's my suitcase of goodies.   I LOVE this bag as I can zip it up, it super sturdy, protective of your spare gear from little hands. I also like that I can roll it rather than sling a camera bag over my back.  Im all about saving my back, knees, energy etc.  

Other essential items

Expression items
I call them expression items as they help to make a photo session fun for children.  

A lens buddy
is always on my lens. I have a favourite rainbow chicken that I have purchased a few times when it wears out !   The more colourful the better. It's also a talking point for kindy kids, they can name it, decide if it's a chicken or bird, or owl. I Can use it to take off my camera and have kids try to catch it - so many uses.  Washable too which is handy.  They tend to wear out over time - so purchase a few ! 
Click on this link for where to purchase one ! 
Sock Monkey.
Super soft, stretchy, safe, durable, washable, comes in lots of different colours. An absolute favourite with most kids. They love to try to catch his arms/legs, pull on the tail etc.   Click HERE to purchase yours
Knee Pads
I cant tell you how many times staff members at kindergartens and childcares have mentioned that knee pads are such a great idea. 
Save your knees !   there are lots of different surfaces in outdoor yards eg, bark, sand, pebbles, soft fall, grass, dirt, rocks..... to name a few.   Give them a try - you will absolutely thank me !  I get mine from Bunnings ! Best $15 spent ever ! 

Other general items: 

  • Baby wipes - Unscented
  • Sandisk SD cards - 64 gb
  • Canon Batteries or Hahnel batteries
  • Small ladder (have in car in case - great for staff photos)
  • Hand sanitiser
  • Water bottles/ sunscreen
  • Fun leggings
  • Fun earrings 
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