Essential Photography Equipment

Basic equipment remains the same. However, the photographer will have to build his or her accessories according to the type of photography chosen.

Listed below are some of the basics that every type of photographer needs:


Wide angle zoom lenses provide a larger field of view than normal lenses and are vital in several types of photography, such as still life, wedding, landscape and others. Additionally, a wide to telephoto lens is essential in wedding photography to capture group photos with ease.

External Flashes

An external flash gives the photographer more control over the amount of light introduced into the photograph than a built-in flash. There is often photo color degradation when the built-in flash is used alone.

The type of flash will depend upon the photographer’s subject. For studio photography, a powerful flash is employed to yield a certain effect. Photojournalists may use a TTL (Through the Lens) metering flash that allows the photographer to measure light levels through the lens itself. This method minimizes the need for a hand held flash meter. Once the light level is determined, the photographer can control the amount of light the flash needs to emit to produce the desired image.

Hand Held Flash Meter

The hand held flash meter determines the amount of light of a scene when there is no internal mechanism on the lens to do so. This is one tool that assists the photographer in controlling light levels to obtain the best quality photograph.

Filters, Reflectors, and Diffusers

Filters provide special effects without damaging the image. UV or haze filters are available to provide polarizing, neutrality or coloring. UV filters primarily protect the lens from scratches. Reflectors and diffusers are used to soften light or add more light. Polarizing reflectors specifically reduce reflections to achieve deeper colors and richer images.


A photographer whose shot requires patience and many hours to achieve needs to invest in a tripod. Tripods are useful for shooting slow-speed exposure, where any sort of movement will result in a blurred image. Tripods should be 2 times the weight of your camera, with the heaviest lens attached, in order to provide proper support. Flexible legged tripods are also useful in shooting images outdoors, because they can attach to the natural elements in the environment.

The monopod also provides the photographer added stability; however, the photographer still holds the monopod while attempting to capture the image.

Cable Releases and Remote Flash Triggering

This mechanism allows the photographer to be hands free to avoid movement from depressing the shoot button or the flash button. Often the camera vibrates from simply depressing the shoot button, which may result in a blurred image. The cable release alleviates this problem by distancing the photographer from the camera body.

Other Pertinent Accessories

For landscape photographers, a sun and tide calculator is necessary to know when the tide and sun will be at the desired levels for the image that the photographer is trying to capture.