I bought my first camera in January 2000, it was a Kodak DC240 1.2MP Digital Camera. My intent was to have this camera passed around between my friends at shows and venues I played so I could document my band’s performances. I ended up using the camera to take photos of landscapes and random things I found interesting.
Later in 2006, I purchased a Canon Rebel XT DSLR and was completely aware of the fact that I loved photographing people and made the transition from being a musician into being a full time editorial portrait and music photographer, where I was hired by local musicians to photograph them for promos and CD covers. I later upgraded to a Canon 5D and so forth, to the gear I currently roll around with.
Pelican 1510 Carry-On Case
I use the Pelican 1510 Carry-On Case to carry my Camera and Lenses and I absolutely love it. Its travel friendly, water tight, crushproof and the best thing of all, it has wheels.
Canon 5D Mark II
I use a Canon 5D Mark II (w/ Battery Grip) as my main camera. I also have a Canon 5D that I keep as a backup camera (not pictured). For bigger jobs I rent a backup 5D Mark II.
Canon 50mm f/1.2L
I use this lens the most. I started out with the 50mm and over the years it’s just been my go to lens. For a long time it’s all I had. It’s good choice for close or full length shots.
Canon 85mm f/1.2L
This lens is absolutely ridiculous. I tend to use it a lot for natural light portraits and it’s very sharp at f1/2.
Canon 16-35mm f/2.8L
I use this lens for wide environmental portraits. You have to be careful when using this lens. It’s easy to distort people when taking portraits with it.
Canon 135mm f/2L
This lens is sharp as a tack. I use this lens if I need to compress the background or for closer portraits.
Pelican 0940 Memory Card Case w/ 16GB Compact Flash Memory Cards
I use SanDisk cards exclusively. I’ve used other brands and had them fail on me. I’ve had great luck with SanDisk. I have an 8GB card that my dog chewed up and it still works like a champ. Also be careful when purchasing memory cards online not to get a counterfeit. Always purchase from a trusted reseller. I went with the Pelican Case once again keeps my cards safe.
I keep 3 of these in my case for use with off camera lighting gear. I use one on each of my strobes, and one on the camera to trigger it.
Battery Case w/ Extra Rechargeable Batteries
I keep extra batteries on hand to use with Pocket Wizards. I learned a hard lesson early on in my photography career when I showed up to a shoot with bad batteries. Always keep spare parts with you.
Sekonic L-358 Flash Meter
I didn’t use a flash meter for years. I decided to get one about 3 years ago and it’s honestly made things so much easier when using multiple lights. It’s also a conversation piece. My subjects are always interested in what it does.
Microfiber Cleaning Cloth
I keep a microfiber cloth on hand to keep my lenses clean.
X-Rite M50103 ColorChecker Gray Scale Card (Not Shown)
I usually forget to use this at my shoots. When I do remember it does make setting the white balance in post-production a bit easier.
Lighting Gear, Light Modifiers, and Grip Gear.
Paul C Buff Einstein strobes
I have two Einstein strobes that I own. I can’t say enough great things about Paul C Buff and these strobes. They are inexpensive and the quality of light is very good. Paul C Buff also has excellent customer service.
Paul C. Buff 47″ Foldable Large Octabox
Inexpensive big light source.
Paul C. Buff 22″ Silver High Output Beauty Dish
Very nice light modifier. I also use this for side/back lighting a subject with a 30º honeycomb grid attached.
Mogul APS100 Full Apple Box
I have a Full Apple Box that I carry around with me. I use it to sit on when I’m shooting.
Profoto Collapsible Reflector – Sunsilver/White – 47″
For years I have just used a white piece of foam core for a reflector. I recently upgraded to this and I’ve been really impressed with it thus far. The reflector has two sides. The white side and the Sunsilver side produces a really nice quality of light that is a mix of warm and cold light.
Matthews 339567 40″ Hollywood C Stand
I have 4 of these stands. I use two for my strobes and two to hold up a seamless background.
Inside Clayton’s camera bag:
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