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At a recent seminar, a woman asked my advice: “I am going on a trip and I am trying to decide on what photo gear to bring. What’s your advice?”

I suggested that she bring all her gear: cameras, lenses, flash, laptop, card reader, etc. (Not that much stuff, relatively speaking.)

“All that gear does not fit in my backpack and carry-on,” she replied.

“Uh, get a bigger backpack and carry -on,” I suggested.

“I don’t want to lug around all that stuff – too heavy, too bulky and too much to manage,” she sighed.

“Hey! It’s not easy having fun,” I said. “You have to work at it,” I smiled.

The point of this little homily: If you are serious about your photography and want to have fun with it, you often need to work at it and that often involves lugging around more gear than you really want to lug. Been there, done that. However, all that lugging pays off when you have the right gear for the right situation.

Heres a look at some of my digital photography travel gear. You may not need all this stuff, but I wanted to give you an idea of the gear commitment a serious on-location digital photographer needs to make.

Laptop loaded with image-editing program

Digital SLR, lenses and flash

Battery chargers

Memory cards

Memory card reader

Portable hard drive for backing up images

Not shown (only prime gear in this photo): Another camera body, additional lenses, flash diffuser, polarizing filter, batteries for flash, extra camera batteries, surge-suppressor power strip, tripod and camera bag.

Well, I gotta go. Need to pack all the necessary gear for my next shoot. If you see someone dragging around a lot of stuff in an airport, it could be me. Say hi.

Hey, they don’t call me “King of the Bag Drag” for nothing!