WHAT'S IN MY CAMERA BAG? / by Jordan Hefler

Recently I've been getting a lot of questions about what gear I shoot with, what's my favorite lens, what do I bring with me to shoots, etc. So I figured I would show everyone what my current setup is!

Over the years, I've accumulated a few different lenses be it through kits, my dad (who is a photographer) or birthday/Christmas gifts. However, what is shown above is what I most OFTEN use.

Pictured from left to right:

Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm 2.8 Lens- (shared with my dad, used pretty rarely but it comes in clutch when I need it) For example, a while back I shot Lil Wayne at the Cajundome arena and really probably could have benefitted from using this lens... but I didn't have it with me at the time. I did get to use it the other night at the Mutemath show and it was my savior since it was a sold out show and there wasn't a pit to shoot from! Those photos are coming soon!

Crayola tin with SD cards in it- I used to always use this Crayola tin for my wallet because it forced me to carry less stuff in my purse. I bought it from Cracker Barrel and it actually came with crayons in it. It's evolved into my SD card carrying case throughout the years. My camera bags have spots to put my cards but I like hearing it clank around in my bag (it lets me know that I didn't forget to bring any!) An Altoid tin will get the job done too. I mainly use 16gb cards, but I do have one 64gb card that is nice to use.

Tokina DX 11-16mm 2.8 Lens for Nikon- This lens was my go-to on my old camera (it's built for a cropped sensor so there's some cropping now when I use it on my new camera.) It's super wide but doesn't distort too much, and is great for landscapes, or when I'm too close to the stage at a concert. It's great at shows for capturing the entire stage and lighting. It's basically the exact opposite use of the 70-200mm lens. I'm looking to get something comparable for my full frame now (I've had eyes on the Sigma 24mm for a while..)

Nikon D5100 DSLR Camera with Nikon AF-S DX 35mm 1.8 Lens- this is my old camera with my old favorite lens! The 35mm on the cropped sensor is almost equivalent to my 50mm on my full frame, if that makes sense. I literally used this 35mm lens for all portraits, concerts, EVERYTHING. It's really sharp and gets the job done consistently. I literally lost the lens cap the day after I got it (I'm setting a really bad example here.) My brother also made me the leather camera strap that you see on this camera. It's cool because he embossed "Jordan Hefler Photography" into it and also embossed my favorite Beatles quote on there: "Living is easy with eyes closed" from Strawberry Fields.

Nikon D750 DSLR Camera with Nikon AF-S FX 50mm 1.4 Lens- this is my brand new full frame camera with my brand new (faster) 50mm lens. This is currently the fastest lens I own so I use it a lot. Also it's reliable and sharp. I'm also in love with my new camera, so it's primarily what I use now with my D5100 being my backup. There is also a battery grip on there right now. The camera strap you see here is my OG favorite. It's vintage and colorful and from the 60's, and makes me feel put together when I shoot in all black. It is falling apart and I recently hand stitched the whole thing back together. It's been around my sweaty neck for many moons and probably should be replaced. I bought it on Ebay a few years ago for like $11.

Nikon SB-700 Speedlight Flash- I rarely need to use a flash but when I do need it, this is what I used as opposed to the dinky on camera flash that gives everyone red eye. Great for events and small local concerts when there's no lighting.

Clear alien zipper pouch- I got this because it was sparkly and clear and had aliens all over it (duh). Since I don't bring a purse with me when I shoot stuff, I use it to hold my ID, money, lipstick, girl stuff, etc. I think it's technically a makeup bag but whatever I do what I want. It just comes in handy and looks cute. I bought it at H&M but can't find it online to link to soooo sorry!

Business Cards- I'M SO BAD ABOUT HAVING BUSINESS CARDS ON ME. I usually put a million in one camera bag and then when I'm using another I won't have any. Or vice versa. And you'd be surprised how many people ask for a card when I'm NOT shooting anything, like when I'm out at a bar or once someone asked for one when I was at a Mardi Gras parade? So I need to remember to keep some in every purse I own. I'm terrible at this part. But I'm working on it.

Air puffer to clean my lenses- I'm not really sure what the official name for this thing is but I like to call it an "air puffer." I also have some little blue ones from the baby department (the kind you use to get the snot out of a baby's nose, right?) and they work great too. I use this to blow air onto my sensor when I need to clean it, or to get dust out of my lenses. Mostly it just looks cool and makes me look cool.

So there you have it! I have like 4 different camera bags and TBH I hate them all so they are not pictured. I haven't found "the one" yet, so for now I just keep buying ones that I don't like... one day I will find my camera bag soulmate <3

(Also not pictured: AA batteries for my flash, battery chargers for my camera batteries, tylenol, and random mixtape a man on the streets of New Orleans gave to me once that I've never taken out of my bag.)