What’s In My Camera Bag – Motorsport 2016 Edition

What's in my Camera Bag

G’day! With the off-season coming to an end I thought it would be a good time to take you behind the scenes of the life of a motorsport photographer and show you the gear I travel with and use on any particular race weekend.

Lets kick things off with the bag that I use. With race meetings all over the country, and a few international trips this year, the bag I use needs to be able to keep my gear protected, while still classifying as carry on luggage (We’ve all seen those videos to show why bags containing your camera gear shouldn’t be checked in).

The bag I choose to use is the  FStop Gear Tilopa, with the large Pro ICU. It’s a backpack that is just the right size for all my gear, plus a couple of extras, but it’s still considered carry on luggage. This allow’s me to always have me gear with me on the numerous flights throughout the year and it also makes life easier getting to and from the track each day.

Moving along to my camera’s and lenses. This year I’ll be using a Canon 5D Mark 3 and a Canon 7D Mark 2 for my main cameras. The full frame and high ISO performance of the 5D3 makes it great for photos with the garages and dynamic range allows me to shoot backlit, while not loosing too much detail. While the crop sensor and high frame rate of the 7D2 will allow me to get greater range and more shots in sequence of those high action moments.

A photo posted by Rhys Vandersyde (@rvandersyde) on

I also carry around a little Sony RX-100 Mark 3 as a little point a shoot camera for those transit photo opportunities. You’ll have gathered by now I really enjoy taking photos, but I don’t want to unload a DSLR camera. A lot of my inflight photos and travel photos are taken with the RX-100 as it’s really convenient to keep in my pocket.

My go to lenses in 2015 were the Canon 24-105mm F4 IS and the Canon 70-200mm f2.8 IS V2. This year added the Canon 16-35mm F4IS and the Canon 100-400 F4-5.6IS V2 to give myself some more flexibility and creative options. Having these 4 lenses throughout the year will allow me to maximize my shot options, while still being able to have a very portable kit for travel.

A photo posted by Rhys Vandersyde (@rvandersyde) on

I’ve also got to be able to work on my photos at the track and on the go so I also carry a 2013 Apple Mac Book Pro and a Lexar Professional Workflow Card Reader with 1TB of SSD storage to keep my work handy and accessible. I also always carry at least one additional Hard Drive (two when I remember) to back up my photos each day. I always make sure I’ve got two, if not three copies of my photos, just incase.

On top of all that I’ve got a couple of necessary accessories that also need to squeeze into my bag…

  • Canon 600EX-RT Speedlight
  • Canon 430EX Speedlight
  • Circular Polariser
  • 12 x Lexar 32GB CF Cards
  • 10 x Lexar 32GB SD Cards
  • BlackRapid Curve Camera Strap
  • BlackRapid Double Camera Strap
  • FM Radio
  • Portable USB Charger
  • Rocket Blower
  • 4G Modem
  • Headphones
  • and all associated cables and chargers.

I’ll do a follow-up post like this next year, so you can see how my gear has progressed in 2016. Let me know what gear you use in your Motorsport Photography in a comment below.

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