In My Bag: Packing for a Photo Assignment

The stuffs I bring on a Photo Assignment
The stuffs I bring on a Photo Assignment

It’s time once again when I need to pack my stuff for a photo assignment. Normally, when I pack my stuff for a personal travel, I try to be as light as possible and leave some things that I would probably not use. But when packing for a photo assignment, its different. I had to bring other stuff along that I may probably need. Here’s just an insight on what I bring along during a photo assignment trip.

Zuiko Lenses I would bring: (l-r) 35mm Macro, 70-300mm, 12-60mm and 9-18mm
Zuiko Lenses I would bring: (l-r) 35mm Macro, 70-300mm, 12-60mm and 9-18mm
Filters ND8 and Graduated ND
Filters ND8 and Graduated ND

Essentials: Inside my Kata Sensitivity Bag I have the following:

Camera and Lenses:

  • Olympus e-3 body
  • Zuiko 12-60mm lens (my all around lens)
  • Zuiko 35mm lens (for my food shots, macros and sometimes portraits)
  • Zuiko 9-18mm (just a new addition for my ultra wide angle needs)
  • Zuiko 70-300mm (for my telephoto needs)

Filters: Aside from the usual protection filters, I also have an ND8 filter and a GND (Gradual Neutral Density) Filter on 2 varying stops. I use to have a polarizing filter but lately I no longer use it as much so I leave it.

Memory Cards, batteries, Flash
Memory Cards, batteries, Flash

Batteries, Memory cards, Lens Pen. I have two extra batteries with me always and also around 20gig of memory cards.

I have a couple of small bags where I put all my chargers and some cables.

I don’t usually bring my MSI Laptop during my trips but a times like this I bring it in case I need extra storage. My Music companion, an old gen iPod and also my cellphones. I can’t also leave without my moleskine and notebook where I jot down notes.

Out of the bag I also have my Giottos Carbon Fiber Tripod. One of the essentials I can’t leave without like my folding umbrella.

All packed up
All packed up. Ready to go

Some of the additional things I bring is my Fl36 Flash and a couple sets of batteries in case I need it. A 2 sided portable reflector which I only borrowed.

Usually on travel assignments, we get to have a decent accommodation where I can leave my stuff so I just bring a Deuter duffle bag with me with a few sets of clothes, toiletry. I leave that in the room.

There that’s it. I may have missed a few things but essentially those are what I bring. When properly packed, I essentially have two bags. My Kata Sensitivity for the gears, my Deuter for the clothes and additional gears and I just hand carry the tripod.

That’s sharing my insight. Will be leaving in a few hours and hope you enjoy the weekend.


  1. good for you to share how to pack for an assignment. will come in handy if and when I get an assignment.

  2. Thanks Ferdz for sharing. This is true and it’s a must for professional photographer accepting an assignment — that you bring along some extra gears such as lenses, chargers and batteries if an incidental event came in. Lesson learned: it’s not appropriate for you to borrow a lens from your client during the actual course of an assignment even if you worked with him or her for quite sometime, right? It’s okay for a client to try out your gear since he or she is learning the craft. This is what happened to me. A photographer borrowed my UWA a number of times and he doesn’t have a tripod with him all along the assignment.

  3. Jocas, I think it’s just part of being a good professional to bring the necessary gear. The preproduction/feasibility meeting is part and parcel of the assignment; at this junction, the photographer should be able to know which equipment to bring so borrowing gear from the art director/client is a big no-no. I also think a tripod is an absolute-must in any shoot even if it’s a bright light shoot because you’ll never know when it will come in handy.

  4. wow! ngayon ko lang nakita in details ang gamit mo pag may assignment ka. thanks for sharing!

  5. drooling over your UWA 🙂
    ang dami mong dala… i just have a few gears, pero bigat na bigat na ako. hehehe

  6. @ lagalog: You’re absolutely right. I don’t mind lending my personal gear. I even insist sometimes just to pull the task off. But my expectation then to that “professional” photographer was he should have the equipment / gear needed to execute the job.

  7. Wow Ferdz, that’s an impressive array. I was just showing to my husband your lenses and stuff. I’m intimidated by those. I stick to my point and shoot right now.

  8. i thot ako lang ‘yung ganito..I mean..always everyday dala lahat ung gear…hirap kasi noh….baka may need ka tapos nasa bahay pala..wala namang silbi if naiwan….well, no regrets….yeah….you’re a very talented person ferds, and very humble too=)…with all these gears/gadgets/…added nalang sya sa pagkabihasa mong kumuha….bonus ba…=) Another thing,…who cares the heaviness of all these things in you bag? or backpack/s?….bottomline is…you’re enjoying what you’re doing…your passion into capturing what your eyes & lens could see…keep it up=) Glad I’ve met you…I’ve been always a fan of your photostream=) Keep it up. Thanks for sharing!

  9. Thanks for sharing sir.
    I do need to save more.

  10. Nakaka ‘tulo laway’ naman ang mga gamit mo! Thank you so much for sharing the info, you are so generous and humble. Maski hindi ako photographer, at maligaya na sa PnS, i still appreciate knowing infos like these. Thank you, and congratulations!

  11. wow, loaded na loaded. nagamit mo lahat o may mga lenses na naging dead weight na lang?

  12. Many thanks guys and gals!

    Yup Estan! I was able to used them all but the least used was the Tele. 🙂

  13. nice, makakakuha ako ng tips and insights from you. hehehe.

    oh, dude, tip.. bring a point and shoot, for just in case.. you know how it is out there.. minsan may mishap.. sana wala pero kaya nga just in case..

    ayos ka ha. wala kang standard midrange. diba bitin ang 60mm? sabagay sanayan

  14. Haha Thank Karlo! Yeah I know about those mishaps. Nangyari yan on one of our trips with a friend of mine. First day pa lang nalaglag yung camera nya sa tubig sa falls. I have another back up camera naman in case.

    the 12-60mm is the mid range. Olympus has a 2x crop factor kaya in 35mm the 12-60mm is actually 24-120mm. It’s my favorite standard zooms 🙂

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