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(Via Brendon van Son)
Traveling and photography is the ideal combination for a lot of people and that's why there so many who spend a good part of the year on the road. Of course, when you travel for weeks or months in a row intelligent packing is crucial and photography gear can impose a challenge in this matter. Without further ado, here are eight hacks that every travel photographer can use to make their life easier.
1. Welding glass = ND filter
This is a classic hack, but a very useful one nonetheless. A good ND filter can set you back tens or even hundreds of dollars. The job of a ND filter is to block sunlight and coincidently, welding glass has a somewhat similar job. You can get one for as little as $5. Sure, you might not get the same colors as you would with a standard ND, but you will get the job done.
2. Macro Extension Tubes
If you're into macro photography, you're probably thinking you need to pack an extra lens just for that before you set out on your journey. A macro lens is big and it's also expensive. The alternative is a simple extension tube. It works by increasing the distance between the lens and the sensor, thus giving you a closer minimum focusing range. Because it has no glass, it means you lose no image quality.
(Success Tip:Take better photos with this simple deck of cards)
Not all travel photographers can spare a few thousand dollars for a 400mm lens. That's why if you own a 70-200mm f2.8 lens, you can easily turn it into a 140-400mm lens by using a 2x extender. Sure, you're not going to get exactly the same image quality, but that again you'll only be spending about $400 and saving up a lot of space.
4. Tripod & Monopod in One
As a travel photographer, you'll eventually need to stabilize your camera. Tripods are great, but that again so are monopods. You obviously can't take both of them with you, so what do you do? Companies like 3 Legged Thing offer 2 in 1 solutions made out of carbon fiber. That means they're light and serve two purposes, making you ready for any situation.
5. Trigger Trap
This is one of those small solutions that really make your life easier. If you love time lapse photography, the Trigger Trap is an excellent asset, and an affordable one too.
6. Camera Cap = Case
This is one of the oldest tricks in the book, but it's worth mentioning again. All cameras and lenses have caps and the cool part about that is that they fit together screw mounted. The space in between the caps can be used as storage space for whatever you want, but most travel photographers put memory cards in there.
7. EyeFi Wi-Fi Memory Cards
Most new DSLRs have built in Wi-Fi, but not all travel photographers upgrade every two years. So what can you do if you still want to download your photos onto your mobile device? Use a Wi-Fi memory card. They're not that more expensive than regular memory cards, but they get the job done just as well as a built in system.
(Success Tip #2: Make money shooting photos of people anywhere you go.)
8. Crop vs. Full Frame
Everybody is going on and on about how cool full frame cameras are and how APS-C sensors have so many disadvantages. First of all, the difference is a lot less noticeable than it was 2-3 years ago. Crop sensors have great image quality and the latest cameras have amazing low light capabilities. Second, a crop sensor camera can actually be better for a travel photographer. They are usually smaller and the 1.5 or 1.6 crop factor will add significant focal length to your telephoto lens.
Brendon van Son is a travel photographer and in one of his videos, he explains just how these eight tips help him with his travel photography.