With the rising prices of additional baggage when flying. Traveling with all the gear photographers need for the average location shoot is getting out of hand. There are lots of articles and tricks for saving some money but most of us have stripped down our travel kits to the essentials. This of course means for bigger jobs renting extra gear once on location. Manufactures seem to get this and there has been a boom in options, from battery powered strobes to wireless flashes and all sorts in between. Back from his online blogging hiatus, Zack Arias shares how he has solved this issue with an all in one ready to go lighting bag.
Arias is no stranger to sharing his knowledge and experience, having written and created countless educational articles and videos. However, he has been quiet for about the last year or so with just little bits here and there to keep his blog alive. Hopefully this new video is a sign of things to come because years ago Arias's early videos based on his failure and then success in starting a photography studio were super influential for many budding photographers.
In this video Arias sets out to accomplish two basic things. An all in one brand specific lighting kit that is compact but versatile and have it all fit into one travel bag. The solution was to use the various strobes and flashes made by Phottix, combined with various modifiers that use the Bowens mount. The beauty of what this combination offers is that all the modifiers can be swapped between strobe and flash. This cuts down a lot on the number of modifiers needed.
For years I have adopted Canon Speedlights as my travel kit and take them everywhere but recently I've been on the look out for a compact strobe kit that I can add to my flash kit. I dream of the day Canon makes a radio trigger that could work with its built in radio system but until then there really isn't a great way to mix brands without using Pocket Wizards. Arias's system seems like about as close as you are going to get if you want a mix of power and portability.
He also shares a few other pieces of his lighting kit that are pretty interesting. The Fresnel mounts seem cool and I'd be interested in seeing a video on these, as well as the Manfrotto boom stand. I hate the bulkiness of most boom stands and have resorted to using a typical stand, C-clamp, and lighting pole. All three things I need to carry anyway, but combined they make a reasonable boom pole for lightweight objects.
Here is a selection of what is included in Arias's kit.
Phottix Stratos II (Triggers)