Which Photography Accessories Could You Not Live Without?

Like most photographers, Manny Ortiz loves to geek out when it comes to gear and really appreciates the items of tech that make his work that little bit easier. In this video, he lists seven items that he simply cannot live without.

As a minimalist, my list is probably a bit shorter than Oritz's, but there are still some absolutely critical pieces of kit that go into my bag ahead of every shoot. Taking a lot of short-haul, budget flights and carrying only hand luggage, I have to be extremely selective, and while I don't mind the trackpad on my MacBook Pro, my cheap plastic travel mouse (similar to this one) makes my life infinitely easier when I'm on the road. Sure, there are nicer mouses, but I know I can shove this one into the bottom of a bag and not worry about batteries or the cost of replacing it if it gets damaged. Best of all, it weighs only a couple of ounces. 

Those who spend a huge amount of time in front of the computer will appreciate how crippling carpal tunnel syndrome can be. Ortiz's method of overcoming his own workflow-induced pain is excellent, and it's something that you might want to keep in mind even if your wrists seem fine. This is a condition that sneaks up out of nowhere and can completely prevent you from working, despite seeming so trivial.

Of course, a bag appears on Manny's list. Personally, I've greatly appreciated my Peak Design Everyday Backpack over the last couple of months. Worth noting on the back of Ortiz's SD card recommendations: be careful when purchasing online as some websites have struggled to weed out counterfeit memory cards, with imitations of SanDisk Extreme PRO being a particular problem.

No doubt we each have our own essential pieces of gear, so be sure to leave your recommendations in the comments.

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jean pierre (pete) guaron's picture

Counterfeit memory cards? - imitation SanDiscks/ WE need to be careful when purchasing on line, because "some sites" have "struggled" to weed them out?

If you deal with a reputable company, THEY will weed them out!

Ken Flanagan's picture

I can’t live without a good set of filters.

My bag has a ton of stuff I almost never use, but don't dare not having with me. I suppose my phone might be the biggest must-have, for directions, TPE, quick research, etc.

Pedro Quintela's picture

Many of us are gear addicts, let´s face it. How many items we have bought and didn´t gave a proper use?
That said of course that we have items that can´t live withouth. A great backpack, filters, batteries. I also love my Peak Design strap just like Manny has. The materials are amazing and it´s really a well thought system.

I only buy my cards from reputed sellers. Don´t want to save a little and then have a problem with a counterfeit ones. Be always careful!

Kirk Darling's picture

With regard to music while shooting: Photographers actually need permission to use copyrighted recorded music during professional shooting sessions. Broadcast music is not a problem, but recorded music requires permission. Of course, the chances of getting caught are slight for most of us, but inasmuch as we'd prefer music companies honor our copyright, "Do unto others as you'd have them do unto you."