Photography Gear Resource Guide

Photography Gear

What's In My Photography Bag? | brittanymthiessen.com

Are you a beginner or amateur photographer? Maybe you’ve seen my photos on Instagram and Facebook and are curious about what kind of photography equipment I use or maybe you are just looking for some resources to help you improve your photography? This page is for you! 

I am not a professional photographer by any means, but I enjoy photography as a hobby and it has helped me to see things from a different perspective and notice the beauty in the everyday aspects of life. 

If you read this page, you will know that I have used a simple point and shoot camera for most of my life and only recently did I upgrade to my first DSLR entry-level camera and begin shooting in manual mode while learning about composition, lighting, aperture, ISO, shutter speed and other techniques. I have never taken a photography course and have learned everything I know through practice, lots of help and tips from my mother, and reading books and online articles.

I love sharing my photography from my travel adventures, experiences, and local explorations here on this blog and on social media with you! Photography brings me joy and I hope you enjoy viewing my photos as well! 

I have compiled a list of my favourite photography gear and resources, which are geared towards beginners like me. If you click on the blue links or the images, you will be taken to a page where you have the option to purchase any of these items. I hope you find this resource guide helpful! 

Cameras

Canon Rebel T5 DSLR Camera

Canon Rebel T5 DSLR Camera

When I upgraded from my Canon point and shoot camera to this DSLR camera and started shooting in manual, I noticed a huge difference in the quality of my photos! The Canon Rebel is an amazing and affordable entry-level camera for those on a budget who are looking to get more serious about improving their photography and delve deeper into the world of professional photography. When you purchase this camera, it comes with an 18-55mm lens which is a great starter zoom lens and is versatile for many different situations. I have been so pleased with the quality of photos that I have been able to shoot with this camera! The kit lens is a great lens that produces sharp images the majority of the time and camera has full manual controls so that you are able to adjust the exposure, ISO, aperture and shutter speed. Here are some of the technical specs for this camera: 

Specs:

  • 18 Megapixel sensor and DIGIC 5 Image Processor
  • ISO 100-12,800
  • 3-inch LCD monitor

**BUY IT HERE**

Canon Powershot ELPH 340 HS

Canon Powershot ELPH 340 HS Camera

Prior to upgrading to the Canon Rebel, this was the point and shoot camera that I had been using. I still enjoy it and it is lightweight, compact and has a variety of photo modes, including limited options for manually adjusting the aperture and ISO. It takes great photos and is perfect for a wide variety of situations. Here are the specs for this camera: 

Specs:

  • 16 Megapixels
  • 4x Digital Zoom
  • 12x Optical Zoom 
  • 3-inch colour LCD screen
  • ISO 100-3200 
  • Built-in Wi-Fi

**BUY IT HERE**

Lenses

Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 VC Lens

Canon EF 50mm f/2.8 II Lens

Canon 50mm Lens

This small lens – nicknamed the “nifty fifty” – is fantastic and it is great for indoor shots, portraits and food photography. The lens has an aperture of 2.8, which means that it works great for capturing the moment in low-light situations and creating a really cool “bokeh” effect, where your subject is clear but the background is blurry. This is a prime lens, which means that it is a fixed length and your feet act as the zoom. In order to get closer or farther away from your subject, you have to physically move your body. Prime lenses are also able to capture sharper and higher quality images. 

**BUY IT HERE**

Canon 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS Lens

Canon 18-55mm Lens

The Canon 18-55mm lens is known as the kit lens, which comes packaged with most Canon Rebel cameras when you purchase them. It is a great starter lens and I love its versatility and flexibility! 

This is the lens that is packaged with the Canon Rebel when you purchase it. It’s a great starter lens and I love it’s versatility and flexibility for being able to take both wide angle and zoomed in shots! As a zoom lens, you are able to get a decent wide angle (although sometimes I find that isn’t quite wide enough for photographing landscapes and tight spaces) and zoom capability with this lens. As an amateur photographer, this is the lens that I currently use as my everyday lens when going on photo walks and for photographing mostly landscapes, urban street scenes, nature, architecture, buildings and more. 

**BUY IT HERE**

Canon 55-250mm f/3.5 IS Lens

Photo Editing Software

Adobe LightroomAdobe Lightroom 6

Adobe Lightroom is the best software for editing and post-processing photos, in my opinion. 

I use Adobe Lightroom to edit all of my photos and it’s totally changed the way my photos look! Lightroom is an amazing software and I love applying presets to my photos and then further adjusting the highlights, exposure, saturation, vibrancy and more to make my photos look beautiful. I purchased the DVD/CD version of this program and although its price is not the most budget-friendly, I absolutely love it and it has been totally worth it for me. If you plan on getting into photography more seriously and want to edit your photos, Lightroom is a powerful and easy to use program to start using. 

Lightroom is a powerful program that allows you to organize your photos and edit them in many different ways.

**BUY IT HERE**

Adobe Photoshop Elements

Adobe Photoshop Elements 14

I use Adobe Photoshop to create my feature graphics and Pinterest images for my blog posts. I love experimenting with a variety of unique and fun fonts (which I download for free at DaFont) and adding them to my photos. Photoshop can also be used to edit and do specific touch-ups on your photos, but I still prefer Lightroom for editing.

**BUY IT HERE**

Photography Accessories

Lexar Professional SD Card

Lexar Professional SD Camera Card

I use this SD card for storing photos on my camera. I love the fact that it’s speedy when shooting and is available in a variety of sizes. I have the 16 GB card and find that this is plenty of room and it allows me to store a lot of photos without having to change cards. 

**BUY IT HERE**

Polaroid UV Filters

Polaroid UV Filter

Having a UV filter helps to reduce glare when shooting photos and it also acts as a barrier to protect the glass of your lens from getting exposed to the outdoor elements like dusty conditions and from getting scratches. There are lots of different types of filters available that have various functions, like making the colours in your photo more vibrant. Filters are definitely a necessary accessory to purchase for your camera! Polaroid makes simple and inexpensive filters that I use and love. 

**BUY IT HERE**

Camera Strap

I purchased my camera strap from a store on Etsy and I absolutely love it! It is a handmade item, the material is super soft and is perfect for wearing your camera around your neck, and I really enjoy the unique pattern and colours of the strap. It’s definitely better than the generic Canon strap that came with my camera and purchasing a strap is a great way to add some personality and individuality to your camera. The shipping on this particular camera strap was also super fast, which is a bonus! 

There are tons of camera straps in a variety of interesting and unique patterns and colours. 

**BUY IT HERE**

Photography Smartphone Apps

Snapseed

Snapseed is a fantastic photo editing app for iPhone and I use it primarily to edit photos taken with my iPhone when I am traveling or out exploring and don’t have access to my computer. 

Learning & Education

Here are some websites and articles that I have found helpful while learning about the basics of photography:

Digital Photography School – Understanding Shutter Speed

Digital Photography School – Understanding Aperture

Photography Life – Understanding ISO

Digital Photography School – Understanding ISO

Photography Life – Understanding Aperture

Digital Photography School – Understanding Aperture

Photography Life – Understanding Shutter Speed

Photography Life – Understanding ISO, Shutter Speed and Aperture

Digital Photography School – Composition Tips

Photography Life – What is Composition? 

Digital Photography School – A New Photographer’s Guide to Composition

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What's in my Photography Bag? Photography Gear | brittanymthiessen.com