In the 1990’s I bought my first SLR camera, a Canon 1000Fn with a 28-80mm and 75-300mm lens. Since then I’ve owned a wide range of cameras and lenses, but stuck to the Canon brand. After my first couple of trips to South Africa I decided to move from consumer grade Canon equipment to their prosumer lineup. I purchased an EOS3 camera body and my first ‘L-series’ glass; a 300 f/2.8 L IS. I used Velvia 50 and Provia 100F slide film which was a bit of a mission as shooting at low ISO values means slow shutter speeds. Action photography and low-light photography were difficult in those days. When Canon introduced their first DSLR I was hesitant at first to make the move to digital as I thought digital couldn’t match the image quality I was getting on slide film. After a couple of years I decided that the versatility of digital cameras more than made up for the perceived loss of image quality and I purchased a Canon 10D. I’ve since owned a wide variety of APS-C and full-frame Canon DSLR’s. Currently I use a 1Dx Mark II as my main camera and a 7D as a backup camera.
For years my main lenses were a 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS, 300mm f/2.8 L IS and a 500 f/4 L IS. Both fixed focal lenses offered exceptional image quality, even when used with a 1.4x tele-converter. Although I loved both the 300mm and 500mm I often found that they lacked versatility. When using fixed focal lenses you must think about the shot you want to make before positioning your vehicle as you don’t have the option to zoom in or zoom out. Thinking about the photo you want to make is a good thing, but when unexpected things happen it means that you often miss a shot because you were either too far away, or more likely too close to the action. In 2016 I decided I wanted a more versatile lens and I bought the EF200-400 f/4 L IS. This lens offers a built-in teleconverter which you can engage, or disengage with the flick of a switch. I cannot praise this lens highly enough. It is a stellar performer. In the 200-400mm range (without the converter) the quality of this lens exceeds the quality of the 500 f/4. With the converter engaged the performance in terms of sharpness and contrast drop off a bit at the long end of the lens, but I’d say it is still on par with the 500 f/4. Although it is sometimes an inconvenience to have lost a bit of reach compared to the 500 f/4 with converter the versatility of this lens compensates for that inconvenience.
I currently shoot with 1Dx Mark II and a 7D Mark II camera bodies. My main lenses include a 100mm f/2.8 macro lens, a 17-40 f/4 wide-angle lens, 24-70 f/2.8, 70-200 f/2.8 II zoom lenses and a 200-400 f/4 IS. All are Canon L-series lenses.
Other miscellaneous items include a Wimberley WH200 type II Gimball, Wimberley F1 and F9 flash brackets, off camera flash cord, flash RT transmitter and lots of Compact Flash cards and external harddrives. I use a Tamrac G32 backpack which I highly recommend. It’s extremely light and well built. The previous version of this backpack was known as the Guragear Bataflae 32l and is used by many professional photographers. Check out this review of this backpack.
I process my images on a MacBook Pro and use Adobe Lightroom CC and Adobe Photoshop CC for editing.