One of my favorite type of YouTube videos to watch is about what vloggers/photographers/creators have in their bags.  I’m always curious to see what do people use to make their art.  Mostly I like it because it gives me insight into their creative process and how they use their gear to get the image that they want.

So let’s talk gear.  Lenses are one of the most important tools photographers use to get the image that they want.  How much of a scene do you want in your photo?  Do you want a blurry background?  Good glass can get you super sharp images, but they don’t make great photos.   Only good photographers can do that.  You don’t compliment the hammer for what the carpenter made, right?

Quick disclaimer – these are all what I would call “entry-level” lenses, aside from the first lens that I talk about.  There is professional grade glass that is significantly more expensive out there, but this is what I have and work with.


First is my Sigma 17-50mm f2.8.  For only about $370, it really does take amazing photos on a budget.  It’s my favorite walk around lens so I can take photos of anything from landscapes, to flowers, to portraits.   The f2.8 aperture is enough for most situations, but when it comes to night photography, I always switch out to my 50 mm.


Also known as the “nifty-fifty,” my 50mm f1.8 it was my favorite portrait lens purchase that I’ve ever made.  On a crop sensor, it actually is 80 mm, so it’s a bit too zoomed in for me to walk around with.  Because it’s the fastest lens I own, I usually use it when the lighting situation is especially rough at dusk or night.  Whenever I shoot with it, I do feel a bit cramped, so I usually reserve it for portraits where I want a nice smooth depth of field or in low lights.


My last two lenses bracket both ends of the focal range.  The first is the 10-18mm f4-5.6.  Because this lens is extremely wide angle, I find that there is so much distortion whenever I use it.  Shooting wide angle is such a technically difficult thing to do, that I haven’t used this lens in months.

And lastly, my 75-300mm lens is my sport lens.  When I go to cover events, outdoor activities or sports, I use this lens to get close up to the action.  My very short and rainy walk during the Boston Marathon and the shots of people playing ultimate frisbee was done with this lens.

Both my wide angle and telephoto lenses are being sold mostly because I don’t use them much anymore.  I plan on taking the money from both of those lenses (and even my favorite Sigma 17-50mm) to upgrade my kit even more.

Bright things are coming in the future.

3 Replies to “What’s in My Bag – Lenses”

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