What's in my Camera Bag?

This summer has been filled with endless travel, and being away from home for a total of 75 days. With that being said, I need to be able to travel efficiently and also not kill my back with loads of gear. Being simplistic when it comes to packing gear—as an adventurous wedding and elopement photographer—is key, but also has its difficulties.

Here is what is in my bag and what works for me:

Photo by:  Allexx Bolander

Photo by: Allexx Bolander

I always have two camera bodies on me no matter what type of session it is. My current lineup is a Canon 5D Mark IV and Canon 6D Mark II. So far, I love this combo and I cannot go anywhere without my Hiptipico strap. Batteries and camera cards are next up. For weddings and elopements I always have 5 batteries on me…even though I only show four here. ;) Don’t forget at least 2 chargers!

I use both CF and SD cards to record my images on, and always store them in travel cases. The 64 gb san disk extreme pro series is my favorite and I stay away from ever buying 128 gb cards.

Some go-to lenses of mine are the Canon 35mm 1.4, 50mm 1.4, and 16-35 mm 2.8. I find these to be my basic lenses and I rent other lenses I may need on a project by project basis (especially if they are simply just too heavy to carry on the daily ). When it comes to accessories/care for my lenses, I regularly carry UV lens filters, lens hoods, a camera duster, and lens wipes.

photo by:  Allexx Bolander

photo by: Allexx Bolander


My laptop is always on me and 2 Solid State External Hard Drive(s). Backing up images immediately after a session is important to me, and if I’m on the road for a month…I need to back up, back up, BACK UP! Fun fact: Each SSD stays in a separate bag just in case!

I stand by Western Digital hard drives, since they have never failed me, during the 4 years I have used their products. I recently started using LaCie drives for a year now and so far no issues.

External flashes are near last on my list because I only use them until absolutely necessary. You can find two in my bag (Canon Speedlite 580 EX and Canon 470EX-AI) especially for weddings.

LAST BUT CERTAINLY NOT LEAST… a headlamp and GOOD beer. Adventure sessions and elopements usually end with some celebratory beers and the need of light for the hike back. My current go-to summer brew is Goose Island’s Summer Time Kölsch.

Cheers to the ends of summer we have ahead of us!


Amanda WardaComment
A Fun Couples Session in Oak Creek

WHAT A BLAST THIS DAY WAS!! I have been dying to get down to Oak Creek and swim. These two were in town from Colorado and I had to show them how we creek it in Sedona. We grabbed our suits, some good Prescott Brewing beers, and had the best time. Don’t forget if you plan to do the same, pack it in and pack it out!!!

A Flagstaff Elopement in the Pines

This elopement was a dream come true; adventurous and an amazing landscape. Flagstaff, Arizona is where a lot of my inspiration comes from. If you look at my logo, the pine tree is a ponderosa pine, and Flagstaff is known for the largest population of them. I had a few moments of tearing up, since I went to college there, and being able to finally capture this totally-in-love couple in it, was like I said…a dream come true. Flagstaff inspires me, it helped create Earth Below Photo, and it continues to inspire Earth Below Photo. I am so thankful for these two and allowing me to capture these moments. Congrats you two!!