Must-Have Gear

Must-Have Gear for Senior Photography

Must-Have Gear for Senior Photography with David Beckham

If you have seen me speak on business topics, you have heard me say, “Try it. Test it. Use it or leave it behind.” The same thing holds true with gear. My first SLR was a Canon AE1 Program that my wife and I purchased over 40 years ago. I stuck with Canon until I tried a Sony A7III. The “eye focus” feature was everything. I did not switch because everyone else was. I switched because I proved that it was better for me and I could not wait any longer for Canon to catch up. I am going to share some must-have gear for photographing seniors I will share the good and the bad with my choices and show you some of the photos I have taken with my Must-Have Gear.

Sony A7III

Love it. The eye focus is crisp and fast. The price is fair. With the Sony G 85mm f/1.4 lens I hit perfect focus 99% of the time. It is my new favorite shooting lens. The negatives: The menus are a pain to learn. Getting used to no mirror meant keeping that sensor clean is a whole new way of shooting. Sadly, the quality was a little fragile as well. I had to send it in for repairs twice in the first two years. But being a Sony Pro member means the service is fast and they are readily available to talk to. They even sent me a loaner during warranty work! I own two Sony A7III and will grab the next A7IV if they make one!

Sony “G” Lenses

The quality is every bit as good as any brand that I have used. I have the 24-70mm f/2.8, 70-200mm f/2.8 and the 85mm f/1.4. I recently added a Sigma 35mm f/1.4 but will probably replace it with the new Sony G. These photos of Cece show you the ranges if you are thinking about purchasing new glass. I framed her the same in each of these and moved closer as I decreased the mm. You can see the effects of wide angle and compression of the longer lenses. I used a Godox AD300 with a Mola Demi dish for OCF and the camera settings were ISO 100, F/3.5, SS 1/200.

The Beauty of Zoom

I love my 85 and it has turned into my favorite lens for the amazing bokeh. But with my 70-200mm f/2.8 lens, being able to get a full body shot and a waist up shot of Sarenity without moving from my location is a huge advantage. As I get older it is not as easy to kneel to capture a photograph. The zoom makes multiple shots so much easier and the compression with shooting at 200mm at f/2.8 has comparable bokeh to the 85.

Similarly, the versatility of the 24-70mm is great. At 70mm you can get great headshots and the zoom to 24 can get that cool look that seniors are loving right now.

That Stand is Savage!

You know how I love the light source close and low power. The Savage Multiplex 10’ stand gives me so much versatility, as the legs all can be set to different lengths and angles. It will stand virtually anywhere. The legs can also be extended so that it will not blow over. The negatives: It is heavy and takes a little longer to set up and take down. It seems a little flimsy and I wouldn’t extend it to 10’ with a 600 or Profoto light at the top. It works great for me though with the smaller, lighter lights. For these of Sarenity, I’m using a Godox AD300 with a Mola beauty dish for the OCF.

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To read the full article, launch the digital version of the March 2021 magazine.