Shaun Baker

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My name is Shaun Baker and I am a photographer based out of San Diego, California. I graduated from college in 2003 with a degree in film/television. After working for HBO and 20th Century FOX, I decide that I no longer wanted to pursue my dream of becoming a director.

I started shooting weddings in late 2008 and I immediately knew that I was on the right path. I love people and can get along with just about anybody. If I stare at somebody for just a few seconds, the feeling I get is so intense. It feels like I was just standing in their shoes. It’s a connection on a whole other level.

I know it sounds weird but that’s the best way that I can explain it. I’ve been trying to apply this to the way that I photograph people. With the hopes that a person looking at the image can get the same feeling.

I want to see us all succeed. So when I’m not shooting/editing, I’m coaching photographers through my other business Circa17.

Cameras

Nikon D750 (2): I love these camera bodies. I got rid of Nikon D4’s for them. They are much lighter and have a deep comfortable grip. The auto focus is blazing fast and the files from these camera are gorgeous!

Leica M6 TTL: This is one of my newer additions. There is nothing like the look of B&W film and that’s basically all this camera will ever see. The Zeiss Biogon 35mm f/2 zm lens is glued to the Leica. It’s incredibly sharp and offers 1/3 interval stops for aperture. It’s perfect for just about everything.

Lenses

Nikon 28mm f/1.8G: I use this lens for dancing during the reception. I like to get close so it’s the perfect focal length for me and the way I like the capture the action.

 

Nikon 35mm f/2D: It’s sharp, fast and extremely durable. The newer versions are made of plastic and don’t have an aperture ring. I shoot an older Nikon FE2 film camera and this lens works great on it. If I had to shoot a wedding with one lens this would be it. It’s my “story telling” lens.

 

Nikon 50mm f/1.4G: I hardly ever use it but it comes to every wedding with me. The only time I pull it out of the bag is to photograph guest portraits during the cocktail hour. But since I hardly ever photograph the cocktail hour, the 50 barley sees the light of day.

 

Nikon 60mm f/2.8G Macro: This is my details lens. That’s all.

 

Nikon 85mm f/1.4D: This lens, along with my 35mm are responsible for 80% of the wedding. I shoot both Nikon D750’s all day and the 35 and 85 carry the workload. The 85mm makes things look pretty. Again, I prefer theNikon 85mm f/1.4D lens over the G because of build quality and aperture ring. The glass is very large and gives me beautiful lens flare.

 

Nikon 70-200mm 2.8G ED VR II: This lens doesn’t make it to all of my weddings. If I have strict regulations at a church, I bring it. It’s big, heavy and will kill your back if attached all day to your camera body. It’s good for what it does but I typically don’t need it.

 

Speedlights and Lighting

Nikon SB-900: I love this flash but it seems to overheat. I normally don’t have to push it to hard and it’s pretty good for when I have to. It’s really durable because I’ve had it fall off of my light stand during engagement sessions and I just pick it up, pop the batteries back in and keep shooting.

 

Nikon SB-910: I prefer this over the SB-900 because it’s much better at handling the high temperatures. I never get an over heating warning with this speedlight.

 

Pocket Wizards: Flex TT5 (2) and Flex Mini TT1. These radio transmitters are great. They work every time and I’m still impressed by how far away I can use them.

 

Neewer CN-160 (2) Every once in a while I use these small LED continuous light panels to add an extra element to the reception.

 

Misc

Impact Light stands (2) Lightweight and indestructible. I mostly shoot alone so I rely on these guys for most of my off camera lighting situations.

 

Impact Boom Arm: The boom arm stays attached to one of the Impact light stands at all times. I use it when I have to position the light up and over the subjects.

 

LumiQuest Softbox III (2) Easy to travel with and softens the light. Perfect small flash combo.

 

BlackRapid RS DR-1 Double Strap camera harness: I wish these were prettier but they are so comfortable that it doesn’t even matter to me. I don’t know what I would do without this.

 

Apple Watch: I use this to access the family formal list. It is it so much easier than going off of my phone or a piece of paper.

 

Think Tank Pixel Pocket Rocket memory card holder: I stick it in my pocket, attach it to my pants loop and I don’t have to worry.

 

I bought the green canvas bag from Aldo because I loved everything about it. I bought inserts and converted it into my camera bag. It can fit both D750’s, the 28mm, 35mm, and 85mm lens. Both speed lights, memory card holder, entire Pocket Wizard system and a lens cleaning cloth.

The black bag holds an OtterBox with the 50mm and 60mm as well as the camera harness, both soft boxes, a 5 hour energy, Cliff bar, a container of Tylenol and a sack of extra batteries.

www.ShaunBakerPhotography.com // www.Circa17.com

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5 Comments

  1. Shaun Baker on February 16, 2016 at 6:29 am

    Hi Michael,
    Your “wide angle” should be your story telling lens. Mine is the 35mm. I have a 28mm that I like to use when I can get close. For wedding photography I prefer 35mm and 85mm. Thats all you really need with the exception of a macro lens for details. If you want to go wider than the 35mm, the Sigma 24 would be my choice. 20mm is too wide and gets real close to fisheye. Keep it simple. Don’t focus so much on the amount of tools that you think you need. That will often confuse you and you may feel like you need to use all of them. When that happens, it keeps you from actually being there. Best of luck!
    -Shaun

  2. mich on October 17, 2015 at 4:31 am

    HI, I LOVE YOUR STYLE AND PHOTOS. I HAVE ONE QUESTION. I WANT TO BUY SOME WIDE-LENS FOR MY NIKON D750 FOR WEDDING-PHOTO. NOW MY WIDEST LENS IST 35 1.8. MY CHOICE IS BETWEEN SIGMA 24 1.4 ART AND SIGMA 20 1.4 ART (THE NEWEST LENS FROM SIGMA). WHAT DO YOU THINK – IS THERE A BIG DIFFERENCE BETWEEN 20 AND 24 MM ON FULLFRAME? WHAT DO YOU PREFER TO WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY, PREPARATIONS OR „BLESSING” AT HOME OR SOME SHOTS ON THE DANCEFLOOR.
    IT WILL BE GREATE TO KNOW YOUR OPINION.

    THANKS A LOT
    ,
    MICHAEL

  3. Shaun Baker on September 11, 2015 at 2:44 am

    Feel free to ask me anything! I’m happy to help.

    • William on September 11, 2015 at 12:10 pm

      I shoot with 2 Nikon D7000s and am looking to upgrade to D 750. I have 12-24mm f4
      35mm, 50mm and 85mm f1.8 also 100mm f2.8 with Tamron 70-200mm f2.8
      3 x SB700s using 4 x pocket Wizards. What would you say about the upgrade?
      Love your work
      Thx Wm

      • Shaun Baker on February 16, 2016 at 6:23 am

        Hi William,
        I love the D750. Its light weight, fast and reliable. For me, it gets the job done. Full frame would be a nice upgrade for you but that will also have a big effect on the lenses that you currently own. A 35mm, 85mm, and 70-200 is all you need. The flashes and pocket wizards are also great and you can use them no matter what you decide.
        Best of luck!
        Thanks
        -Shaun

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