My names Bill Whitmire and I’m a professional photographer and retoucher based in Portland, Oregon. I specialize in portraits and work mostly in the advertising and entertainment realm.
My first passion in life was music. I chased a music career for most of my life and found a passion for creating images along the way. Making promotional images for bands was a natural progression for me and I’ve had the chance to work with the likes of Papa Roach, The Struts, Gary Numan, Foster The People, and more.
Lately I’ve been spending most of my time shooting commercial portraits and products for agencies and brands in the Pacific Northwest. I do a hefty amount of retouching jobs as well, as I’ve always been equally passionate about that part of the image making process.
The gear I use is pretty simple. I appreciate new technology and developments, but I don’t lust after the latest and greatest gear. I’ve been using the same Nikon D800s for almost 10 years and they are still giving me what I need to make the images I want to make.
I have a ton of stuff in my studio, but here’s a list of my favorite things that I use the most or would pack if I was running out to a location shoot.
Cameras / Lenses:
90% of my portfolio was created with this camera. I love the files from this 36mp, full-frame sensor. They’ve been dropped and soaked in water and still rocking after almost 10 years. I have two of them and when I upgrade to a Nikon D850 (or medium format), I’ll probably hang on to one of these as a backup.
Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8
Great all-around lens. Pretty much stays on one of my D800s at all times.
Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8
I use this lens the most. It stays on my other D800 full-time. I use it for everything, especially portraits.
Tamron 180mm Macro f/3.5
Using this lens for product photography lately. Love macro lenses and can’t believe I haven’t picked one up earlier. Autofocus is a little slow but super sharp!
Paul C. Buff Einsteins + Cyber Commander Trigger
Like so many photographers, I started out with Paul C. Buff’s and still use them. They are solid, affordable, great power range and action-freezing ability, and their customer service is incredible. I love PCB. These live in my studio and rarely go on location with me.
Profoto B1s + Profoto Air Remote TTL-N
These are my location lights and I probably don’t have to tell you why. Super portable and can sync to my Nikon D800s at 1/8000th (with the Air Remote). I’m in love with them.
Nikon SB-800 Hotshoe Flash
Honestly, I’m not even sure why I still have this thing. I never use it. I keep it around in case things get bad and I need to shoot an event or something. I want to ditch it so bad but I know that as soon as I do, I’ll need it for something and won’t have it.
I love my Elinchrom boxes, but I’ve been using the Softlighters for almost everything lately. They are SO portable and you wouldn’t be able to tell if I used this or a $500 Elinchrom box by looking at a photo.
Macbook Pro 15” with SSD Drive
I choose to work solely on my Macbook Pro so I can bounce around from studio to office to coffee shop to couch and not have to chase files around from one device to another. Works for me.
Lacie Rugged Thunderbolt SSD External Drive
I backup my tether sessions to this drive after every shoot and keep it in a separate location than my Macbook. That way, if I lose my Macbook before I get back to my office to archive my session on my long-term storage device (Lacie Big 5 Thunderbolt RAID), my client won’t kill me and I can still finish the job.
Lacie Big 5 Thunderbolt RAID Storage
As mentioned above, this is what I use for my longer-term storage. All of my data is stored here and then I use an app called Chronosync to back this device up to the Cloud (Google Cold Storage). If you’re not backing your data up to multiple local locations + the cloud, you WILL get screwed one day and it will be heart breaking.
NEC 30” Spectraview Monitor + i1 Color Calibration
Cost a pretty penny but so worth it. This monitor is so tight.
Wacom Intous 4 Tablet (Medium)
Use it every day for retouching. Can’t imagine ever using a mouse again. If you’re about to buy one and not sure what size to get, get a small. I wish I had. I don’t use much of the surface area and a medium is unnecesary.
Inside Bill’s camera bag:
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