I often receive emails querying the suitability of a particular camera body or lens for landscape photography. My landscape photography set up is pretty simple and hasn’t changed very much over the last few years. I named this article ‘8 Essential accessories for Landscape Photography’. That said, there are days I go out with just with the X100V so keep it simple.
The following list are the things I normally take out on focused trips. I repeat: keep it simple and travel as light as possible. Heading out for a ten kilometre trek over rough ground means is a challenging enough and less is definitely more.
1. The Camera Body (Fujifilm X-T5)
I am completely smitten by Fujifilm X cameras since purchasing my X100 in 2011. The X-Trans sensor is amazing, making all the Fujifilm X Series cameras ideal for landscape photography. One of my favourite landscape photos was captured with the little X20 camera.
A tilt screens is particularly handy for long exposure photography, the situations when it isn’t easy to get behind the screen. If the idea of a multi lens system is daunting the Fujifilm X100V also performs brilliantly as landscape cameras.
This image of Folley Bridge, Tollymore was captured with the Fujifilm X100V. See 100 Photos captured with the Fujifilm X100 series camera.
My ultimate landscape camera has to be the new Fujifilm X-T5, this camera isn’t just about speed for action photography. With 40 megapixels, stablisation the dust and weather sealing it is perfect/essential for the Northern Ireland climate. I also tend to crop to fix composition.
Most cameras now offer wifi enabling you to geotag your image with location information. This is a great way to document where you have been. Applications such as Lightroom will then automatically add your images to a visual map.
I tend to pack three lenses for landscape photography, 14mm, 18-55mm and the 35mm. It is important to remember that landscape photography isn’t always about shooting ultra wide. The Fujinon lenses are excellent right out to the edges and are portable enough for long hikes.
The following image was shot with the 14mm lens on a beach in County Down.
I have a couple of screw on filters for the 35mm lens and the Lee Seven5 system. These work really well and the f/1.4 aperture means you can get creative with bokeh in landscape photography. For general reportage landscape photography I will tend to use the Fujifilm X100V see point 3.
3. The Fujifilm X100V
It’s wrong to call this an accessory but my Fujifilm X100V goes everywhere. It is my favourite camera of all time and a great second camera during long exposure photography. I carry the X100V in the official case that offers a great deal of protection out on the hills. You can read about my recommended X100V accessories here. The long exposure photograph below was captured with the Fujifilm X100F.
I am big fan of the Lee Filter Seven5 system. I know a few photographers complain about the price of filters. This system is more cost effective that you may think. The Seven5 system can be used with different lenses with the purchase of a low cost adaptor, typically about £25. Some of the Fujinon lenses have the same filter thread size so an adaptor can work with multiple lenses.
I carry the Lee Filters everywhere and use a couple of graduated filters and the ND110. Top tip, the darkest filter closest to the lens. Lee Filters Seven5 Range (AM).
5. Travel Tripod
I haven’t quite found the perfect travel tripod. I’ve tried a few, the problem with living in Northern Ireland is, you can’t easily evaluate a tripod before purchase. A good tripod is an essential piece of kit. My current favourites are two manfrotto tripods. The Manfrotto Befree for landscapes and long exposure photography. I then carry the Manfrotto Pixie with the Fujifilm X100V.
6. Lens cloth
Capturing long exposure images in Northern Ireland means the lens can get wet from spray or mist. Don’t be tempted to use your sleeve! pack a low cost lens cloth to keep your lens and filters clean between exposures.
I find a local optician is the most cost effective way to purchase plain lens clothes. I tend to keep them in a zipped pocket in the bag to protect from sand and dust.
7. Pack a Head Torch
Aiming to capture photographs during the Blue or Golden Hours can mean setting out in low light. A low cost head torch can be a handy accessory when adjusting settings on your camera. It is also essential for safety while walking in the dark.
I actually received my torch free with a subscription to a photography magazine. It is definitely worth getting a reasonable good torch that offers red and white light. This the Petzl torch I use.
Tip : I have used the beam from my head torch to allow the camera to find focus. Remember to turn the torch off when you are shooting to avoid distracting additional light.
8. Packing the Bag
Camera protection is essential. The ThinkTank bags are excellent for carrying cameras, lens, accessories, even lunch. My Retrospective 5 is exceptional quality. It comes with a rain cover to protect your expensive gear safe in the hills.
Landscape photography is as much about getting out into the great outdoors as it is about capturing images. It can be a great way to relax by heading out to the coast or mountains. Just looking around and documenting what you see. If you need a new creative challenge then check out the Long Exposure Photography ebook to offer a new perspective.
If you have anything to add then feel free to post in the comments below.
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