Spare memory cards
A 50mm lens
A circular polarizer
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Whether you are just starting out or have been doing photography for many years, you probably have a photo bag. Now, as the years pass and you get deeper and deeper into it, chances are you are going to purchase a lot of stuff on the way. Your bag will get bigger and heavier and one day you are probably going to say to yourself “stop it! It’s enough”. Shortly after that you will begin to decide what stays in the bag and what goes. Among all those items, there are some of them that should not be missing from your bag, no matter how big or small it is. Here they are.
Often I see photographers who, storage wise, rely on one extreme capacity memory card. It’s wrong for one simple reason: what do you do if it fails you in the middle of a shoot or a wedding? It’s true that this problem has found a solution in dual card slots, often both SD and CF, but considering the fact that memory cards aren’t actually gigantic, I believe every photo bag should have at least 2 or 3 spares.
No photography kit will ever be complete without the trusty, old 50mm lens. It doesn’t have to be the f1.0 version. The $100, f1.8 piece of plastic should do it. Of course, it you want something special for your bag, consider getting a manual 50mm lens. They have fewer chances of breaking down and work better for video.
No, you don’t necessarily have to be a landscape photographer to own one of these. They can do a good job in other types of photography too. You never know when you might stumble onto an unwanted reflection that even the most advance d Photoshop skills can eliminate. Invest in a quality polarizer and don’t forget about it after you buy it.
You really don’t want to need one in the field and not have it, especially if your glass was a significant investment. You can find them in a lot of places so you can’t even blame your own laziness for not having a pack.
This is another item to help counter unpredicted elements, such as rain. Protecting your gear, no matter how much it costs, should be among your top priorities. It’s also a good idea to invest in a bag that has a rain cover of its own.
You should have a good battery supply for both your camera and your flash unit. The reasons are obvious.