Getting big kit results whilst travelling small in commercial photography

Canon photographer Tim Stubbings talks about getting big kit results whilst travelling small in commercial photography.

It’s taken me years to get my kit down to the point where I have an every-day go-to mix of equipment and also a smaller version for flying. There travel kit is different to the studio equipment because of the punishment it takes and the need to be more flexible.

For the bulk of editorial and commercial work, my best friend is a Calumet RC2065 rolling case. When I don’t need large studio lights and heavy stands, this pretty much does it all:

Camera bodies – 1ds3, 1d3, 5diii

Lighting – 2 x Canon 580EXiis plus a Godox AD360 when you need to light something larger than a person outside of overpower the sun. The Godox comes with their controller and receiver set but I also use Phottix Odin and Pocketwizard Plus iis triggers as a backup and to fire the 580EXs. Although I shoot my flashes in manual mode, the Phottix does have an ETTL and HSS capability. I’m old school hence the flash meter.

Modifiers – the Ezybox and Rogue Flashbender come with me everywhere although I tend to use the Flashbender more as a snoot or flag when using a backlit flash gun. The umbrellas are there instead of the softbox or to spread a larger light source. The Honl gel sets are fantastic for warming up the flash guns or adding a splash of colour to a background. Many a time the CTO has faked the sun when it hasn’t turned up.

Lenses – 100mm 2.8L macro; 70-200 2.8L; 24-105L; 17-40L; 85mm1.8; 40mm pancake. Extender 1.4 for conference work + extension tubes.

My second and new best friend is a the Lowepro RL450, which since the change in British Airways cabin baggage sizes means that I can cover small assignments overseas by placing tripods and stands in the hold but keeping the camera with me. It has optional back straps, pull up handles and pockets for everything – including a laptop.


Ref: Getting big kit results whilst traveling small in commercial photography

Canon 1ds3 body – arguably more realistic files than the 5diii

Ancient but trusty Canon 580EXiis

Phottix Odin triggers

Godox 300W head

Lowepro RL450 pull up handle


Lowepro RL450 optional back straps

Canon flashes x 2 with Phottix Odin triggers

Canon flash and small softbox

Canon flashes and Phottix Odin triggers

Godox and Canon flashes, Pockewizard triggers

2 x Canon flashes, Honl gels and small softbox

Canon flash and Lastolite softbox

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