Hi everyone, my name is Gianluca Carretta and I’m 33 years old. I’m Italian and I’m a freelance photographer based in Melbourne, Australia.
I had the opportunity to travel around the world thanks to my past job in hospitality and during this time I always brought my old camera with me to document my journeys. In 2018 I decided to turn my passion into a profession and now am an award winner in fine art/abstract architecture and nature photography.
What’s in my bag? I think most of the photographers have a GAS problem (Gear Acquisition Syndrome) and I would love to have all the photography gear present in this world but it’s also important to learn how to use and master what you already have.
Nikon Z6 – The new Nikon mirrorless system, for its quality and reliability, helped for a different shot taken during the night, while I was doing my walking.
The camera has an in-built image stabilization that improves the quality of the images when using slow shutter speed. Nikon Z6 is also capable to handle high ISO, avoiding lots of noise in my images.
The Nikon 24-70mm f/4S and the Nikon 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G are my daily use lenses. I use these when I shoot events because of the versatility given from the zoom lenses.
In events, you have a really short time to capture a moment and the pace is usually really fast, so zoom lenses allow me to have a very wide variety of focal length range in an easy and quick way compared to the long time needed swapping prime lenses.
The Nikon 24-70mm f/4S is the lens permanently attached to my camera because that focal length range is the most used by me but when I want to compress the background or focus my composition on details, I swap to the Nikon 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G lens.
This Nikon 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G is an F lens (DSLR Version) but can be used on the mirrorless Z body thanks to the FTZ Mount adapter. I decided to keep the FTZ adapter attached to this lens because this is the only F lens that I still have and doing this, I save time when swapping lenses from the body.
Going to my prime Nikon 50mm f/1.8S lens, I give it more use on my still images like products or architecture (even for portraits it does a great job). The quality and sharpening of this prime lens are superior then the Nikon 24-70mm f/4S in my personal opinion. Usually, I carry these three lenses wherever I go.
Most of the time I shoot abstract/architecture for personal purpose and depending on the structure or the details of it that I want to highlight in my shot depends on the choice of my lens as well. Again, zoom lenses give me more flexibility in movements, zooming in and out I can also adjust my composition in the way that I like.
The composition of the shot can be done also with the Nikon 50mm f/1.8S (just moving my body), I swap straight away with the prime lens and I take the shot.
The quality of the Nikon lenses has always been incredible but the new S-Line for mirrorless exceeds expectations. It’s just outstanding!
If the shot of the architecture is a planned shot, I bring with me my tripod Manfrotto 055XPROB, which allows me nice stability and the opportunity to do focus stacking (multiple shots of the same subject changing the focus point and then stacking the images in post-production).
Of course, the tripod is essential for shots taken during the night time because it gives me the possibility to shoot with slow shutter speed and keep a small aperture and low ISO. The slow shutter speed is a must if you want to create light trails or silky water in your shots and these techniques are impossible without the use of a tripod.
About my Nikon Speedlight, I use my Nikon SB900 (Nikon SB700 as backup) on camera most of the time when I shoot my events. The use of my Speedlight changes completely when I have to take portraits; when I do portrait or headshots, I use both Speedlight (Nikon SB900 and Nikon SB700) on light stands with a Speedlight/Light stand bracket.
I usually prefer to bounce the light generated from the Speedlight to a reflector umbrella installed on the Speedlight bracket and I trigger them with my Hanel Captur Trigger (transmitter) which is installed on the hot shoe of my camera. The signal of the transmitter goes to the Hanel Captur Trigger (receiver) positioned underneath the Speedlight that fires the light.
This kind of lighting setup, where I use Speedlight and an umbrella, is for an indoor location photoshoot. In case I have to take photos in a photography studio, I use the strobe lights of the studio and I connect, with the sync cord, my camera to the master light head. The sync cord is connected with my camera thanks to the Nikon Sync Adapter AS-15 that is mounted on the hot shoe.
This adapter is useful in case the sync cord output is not present on the body of the camera.
All my gear is packed ready to go in my Lowepro Stealth Reporter D650AW – a fantastic camera bag, lots of space inside where you can put lenses, Speedlight, camera body, triggers, laptop and cleaning tools. It also includes a rain bag on the bottom pocket where, in case of rain, I can wrap the bag with the waterproof cover.
Talking about my post-production workflow, I have always used and still use Adobe Cloud that includes Photoshop, Lightroom, Bridge, Camera RAW, Illustration, InDesign and all the other Adobe software.
Once I download my files on my PC, I create a backup of them straight away on external hard drives (at least two) and after the download and backup, I start my editing process which is open all the files of the shoot session on Adobe Bridge (alternative) and start to make a selection of the files that I want to work on.
When the files are selected I open them (one at a time if different, altogether if it is the same subject/light/environment) on Adobe Camera Raw where I adjust my white balance, I play with black and white slides avoiding clipping and losing details, and finally I fix vibrance/saturation of the image and the sharpness.
I finalize my images on Photoshop for more accurate local adjustments and get the file ready to be sent or print.
In my bag I never miss the cleaning tools (blower, brush and glass tissues), extra Sony XQD cards and extra batteries Nikon EN-EL 15b.
Photography is like magic because you can stop time with a click. Go out, shoot and have fun!