My Photography Gear: What’s in my Camera Bag

November 4, 2020

My Faves, Photography

Everyone thinks that to be good at photography you have to have the most expensive gear, but that simply isn’t true. I started getting serious about photography in 2016 when I bought my first camera. It wasn’t the best that money could buy, but it didn’t have to be. In fact, I still use most of my first photography gear including that camera today. But I’ve made a few upgrades here and there, and I want to share my favorites with you!

Are you thinking of upgrading to a DSLR camera instead of just your smartphone? Most of the gear on this list is perfect if you want to start learning about photography. I’ve included everything I use and how I use it.

Or maybe you already have a DSLR camera and you don’t know which lens to upgrade to. Check out what I use! Maybe you’ll get some ideas! I should mention that I’m a fan of Canon, but Nikon has the equivalent of most of these lenses if that’s your preference.

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My Camera: Canon EOS 90D

My Photography Gear - What's in my travel camera bag - Canon EOS 90D DSLR camera

The Canon EOS 90D is a great camera for hobbyists and photography enthusiasts. It has an articulated, touch screen LCD which is awesome. I highly recommend this camera for vloggers and for people who travel a lot like myself. The autofocus is really good and makes this camera easy to use.

You can see more of the specifications and techy details on Amazon or Canon website. The important things to know are that it has a cropped sensor, and it’s equipped with Wifi and Bluetooth making it easy to connect to your smartphone. It can also shoot continuously at 10 frames per second (for photos) and 4K video.

Professional photographers often use more expensive cameras because they have full-frame sensors instead of cropped sensors like this camera has. I will say that this is the best DSLR camera on the market that is doesn’t have a full-frame sensor. I know there are better, more expensive cameras out there, but the 90D is perfectly good enough for me and for anyone who wants to take great photos. I love this camera, and I’m very happy with my purchase!

See it on Amazon

My Backup: Canon Rebel T5

Canon EOS rebel t5 dslr camera

I started becoming seriously interested in photography in 2016 and decided to buy my first DSLR camera. I researched and compared dozens of cameras and finally settled on the Canon Rebel T5 based on capabilities and budget. This is an awesome starter camera and very affordable. Now they have the T6i, T7i, and T8i for a slightly higher price.

If you are looking to upgrade to a DSLR the Canon Rebel cameras are perfect for amateur photographers. They take great, high-quality images, and they’re pretty user friendly for those who have never had a camera with interchangeable lenses.

When I purchased my camera, I decided to go with the Canon Rebel T5 bundle which also came with 18-55mm and 75-300 mm lenses. I highly recommend this bundle, and you can find it on

GoPro Hero 8

Whenever I go kayaking, hike to a waterfall, or go to the beach, I’m always afraid I’ll drop my camera in the water. But I still want to capture those beautiful views! So I decided to purchase the GoPro Hero 8. This tiny camera really has some amazing capabilities. It’s waterproof down to 33 ft. (10 m) without a case, has HyperSmooth stabilization, and can shoot 4K video in 8x slo-mo, real-time, or time-lapse. It can also take 12-megapixel photos making it super versatile.

See it on

50 mm f/1.8 Lens

This lens, often called the “nifty fifty,” is definitely one of my favorites. This super sharp prime lens has great bokeh (blurriness of the background) because of the f/1.8 aperture. Its small size and quality build make it a great lens to carry around and take pictures of your friends and family. This is my absolute favorite lens for taking portraits.

The 50 mm f/1.8 is a perfect lens for an upgrade from the kit lens that comes with most camera bodies. It’s very affordable, and if you’re looking for your first lens upgrade, this is definitely what I recommend.

See it on

18-135 mm f3.5-5.6 Lens

This amazing zoom lens is the perfect lens for travel. The zoom range covers any situation whether you are shooting landscapes, portraits, or faraway objects.

If I have to choose just one lens to take with me on a trip, this is the one I want. I love it so much that I even wrote a more detailed review in this blog post: The Best Lens for Travel. Check it out if you want to know more!

See the new model on or check out the awesome bundle I got for much cheaper on Amazon!

75-300 mm f/4-5.6 Lens

I love to use this lens to capture distant objects like wildlife or the moon. I used it at the Nashville and Memphis Zoos and when I rode Kilimanjaro Safari at Disney World. Even though it’s a kit lens, it takes great quality photos, especially for the price.

See it on

35mm f/2.8 Macro Lens

This lens is extremely versatile. It’s great for portraits, with an aperture of f/2.8, and also for wider shots than what a 50 mm lens can achieve. This is a really cool macro lens if you want to be able to take detailed pictures of flowers or other small objects. The coolest part about this lens is the built-in ring light! The ring light is not meant to light faraway objects and won’t reach as far as a flash. The light is mainly for macro shots, and it’s better than using a flash for close-ups because it gives a more natural look.

See it on

Camera Backpack

My absolute favorite camera bag is my S-Zone camera backpack.

This backpack is perfect to use as a personal item while flying. It has plenty of space in the upper half for anything you need on a hike or plane ride, and the lower half is dedicated entirely to photography gear with customizable compartments and a side-opening pocket. I looked and looked for a travel backpack that had everything I wanted, and this was the winner! I definitely recommend it.

See it on

Camera Straps

I have two options I use for camera straps: a neck strap and a handheld strap. I got tired of the Canon strap that comes with the camera, so I looked for something cuter! My polka dot strap from BestTrendy is very affordable and comfortable! I don’t think they sell the polka dot design anymore, but they do have some pretty flower designs. The neck strap itself is great no matter what design you choose.

See it on

Sometimes I prefer to hold my camera with the handheld strap. After a long day, it can get tiring to carry a heavy camera on your neck! I picked out this handheld strap, and I love it!

See it on


For my phone and GoPro, I purchased this tripod and selfie stick bundle on Amazon:

The flexible tripod and selfie stick have interchangeable mounts for a smartphone, GoPro, or even a regular sized camera. The bundle also comes with a remote shutter for iPhone and Android.

See it on

I also have two full-size tripods. My basic tripod is the Sunpak 5555 DLX. This tripod is very lightweight and perfect for travel. It’s also very affordable.
Unfortunately, being affordable and lightweight means that it feels cheaper. However, I still think it’s a very good tripod for basic needs, and it’s very adjustable. I’ve never had any problems with it, and I would recommend it for beginners.

See it on

My other tripod is a Zenith 920-650. As far as I can tell, these aren’t sold in stores anymore. I got mine at Goodwill! If you ever find one, I definitely recommend it. It’s nice to have a good, sturdy tripod. They aren’t great for travel since they are so heavy, but they will last forever.

That being said, if you don’t use a tripod that often, a more basic tripod like the Sunpak works great for everyday needs. I am by no means bashing this tripod, but you get what you pay for. Cheaper tripods will not be as great quality as the more expensive ones, but they can still serve you well if you take care of them.

I hope you have found a new lens to add to your wish list! I love everything on this list, and I’m glad to be able to share my favorite gear with you!

What’s your favorite lens or photography gear? I’m always looking for recommendations! Tell me your favorites in the comments! And don’t forget to join my email list to be notified whenever there is more travel and photography content added to the blog!

My Photography Gear: What Should You Add to Your Camera Bag?


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