My newly-defined role as a destination photographer has been a long time coming. First there was that time in Germany when (as a fifteen year old) I walked around with not one…not two…but THREE film cameras. I stood on a street corner in Heidelberg and knew I had been bit by the travel bug – BIG TIME. Then there was the time in Africa when I really, truly, FULLY experienced the new world for two and a half weeks before even picking up a camera. Then there was the time I shot a wedding in Vietnam and spent the whole three weeks pinching myself wondering when I would wake up from the delightful dream I was living. Somewhere along the way, I became a travelling photographer.
Then there was the time I married the Canadian and moved my whole life across 3,000 miles, twelve state lines, and one international border.
With this cross-continental, cross cultural move, came a season of transition and my season of destination photography. First I shot a summer of destination weddings in NC/VA/DC because I had booked those clients before being engaged myself. Then I booked a summer of destination shoots in WA/AZ/AR/TN/NC/VA/DC because I wanted to…and because I could…and because I did not know when the paperwork would be finalized to allow me to start a business north of the border in Canadaland.
All told, I’ve come to love this wandering life I lead (most of the time :P) and along the way have found the tools to make this destination photographer lifestyle and all its specialized challenges as uncomplicated as possible.
Enter: My survival kit for being a destination photographer.
The Pelican case: I’m not sure how I survived a so long with out it. I purchased my Pelican at the beginning of this season and have never, ever looked back. All my gear fits comfortably into one water-tight, cushioned, locked carry-on. Plus, it’s a great conversation starter: “Nice case” said one pilot; “That’s a great suitcase,” said a Boeing engineer; “What do you have in there?” asked a teenage boy.
The Shoot Sac: I eyed the Shoot Sac website for years before finally taking the plunge and ordering my very own. And this baby? The best and only camera bag I will ever need at a wedding. (Extra gear stays stashed in the Pelican case and is easily accessible, but my necessities are in the Shoot Sac.)
My Tablet: When surviving long flights, I love my fully-charged Google Tablet. I can blog, email, read Kindle, update my Evernote project lists, play games…basically, whatever I want to do, it will do for me. And it fits in my purse. Win.
Clark’s: finally a pair of heels worthy of a wedding day. They are comfortable, stylish, walkable, and wearable. Basically, the perfect combination of function and fashion.
Travel Outfit: For actual traveling, I have developed a uniform: maxi skirt with a T-shirt and a scarf then layered with a jacket or cardigan and paired with comfortable shoes and, of course, socks (for going through TSA).
Now, if only someone would convince me that electronic boarding passes are as reliable as the paper ones, I could fully come out of the dark ages and into the 21st century.