Below is a list of my go-to items when I travel, take photos, or when I'm at home doing video webinar, or even training for the next big trips. These are the best tools I found after years of trials and errors. I highly recommend you check them out. Please use the Amazon and B&H links I provided as I would receive around 1-2% commission if you use my link to purchase. Thank you in advance!
The MUST-BUY NOW list
I have 15 of them. Can save you hours when backing up files after a long day of photoshoot. For example, what usually took me an hour to transfer on my WD hard drive, this SSD drive takes maybe just a minute or two. It's insane. Durable, reliable and save space when travel.
I have switched from Gura Bag to this one. I can easily put BOTH my 600 f/4 and 400 2.8 without hoods in it, plus 3 bodies and a bunch of smaller lens, plus a Samsonite cart in it. When doing air travel you never use bags with wheels otherwise it would be gate checked in smaller planes.
Ultra warm and ultra light. I used to have the mountain hardwear compressor but the Arcteryx is a lot nicer.
Health and Fitness
I've been training my core everyday since my lower back injury. And I would drink protein shake plus organic red, and sometimes I make fruit juice. I've tried many brands and this one recommended by Andy is the ultimate, though expensive, the juice tastes 10x better I don't know why.
I've been lazy and only use K-cup lately. My favorite is the Major Dickason from Peet's. Since I have been using the 168 intermittent fasting these days, good coffee is important. My old machine took 30 seconds to heat up the water. This one is instant.
Cardio is super important for wildlife photographers. I do 45-60 mins cardio every day. Very relaxing. I just watch YouTube on my iPad while on the ellipticals and new ideas of photography would randomly come up.
Get a $50 OFF discount
I strive to get 8 hours of good sleep and the Oura Ring recommended by Dan helps me keep track of it.
Use this referral code to get $100 off:
Link to Peloton
With all the live classes, it really keeps you accountable. I switch between this and my ellipticals to have variation.
Computers etc for editing and viewing
Link to Topaz Denoise AI
The best noise removal software I've used. Use my link to get 15% off.
If work together with my Dynamic Tension Stacking workflow, you can significantly reduce noise while retaining details and keep the boundaries of your subject natural.
Audio and Video At Home, FB Live, Zoom Webinar
This one combined with the Shure SM7B mic is the best combo for ultimate sound quality. Though expensive, well worth it. Much much better than my previous blue yeti setup.
Cold and Rainy Weather plus travel apparel
The best lightweight ventilated rain shell recommended by Chas. Insanely expensive and insanely good. Great customer service.
The best lightweight ventilated rain pant. Best to wear on top of the Compressor Pants if super cold. Insanely expensive and insanely good too.
Super warm and lightweight. Super comfy. Beware though, its so warm you may not survive wearing it for too long indoors.
I usually wear this beneath the Heat3 Glove for extra warmth. Can handle -40F. I usually buy 5 pairs of those because if it gets wet you can switch to another pair. Cold fingers is never good.
So comfortable and quick dry. Good for travel and I wear it beneath the compressor pants if cold.
A pair of muck boot is the standard for residents of Alaska, and good for anyone doing a lot of hike in rainy season.
Waterproof duffel bag is easier to fit in small planes. I always use the Samsonite Cart to pull them. And I put one inside the bag to check in.
Knee pads are critical when you see wild animals and need to get to a lower level. You just need to put it on the right knee if you carry your lens on your left hand.
International and remote communications
This thing uses satellite signals where you can send your GPS location to friends all over the world, and also FB so they can save you. Can also send text messages. I pay the monthly fee of ~$60 for the service, and get peace of mind. I was able to send good signals in remote island of Falkland Islands.
I use this to create wifi hotspot when I travel internationally. Just need to purchase some day pass before the trip and it will be automatically activated once you arrive at the cities.
I read somewhere on self-defense that this pen is the best as a tactical pen because of the material. Also can be used to write 🙂
B&H Link for Nikon 400 2.8
B&H Link for Sony 400 2.8
B&H Link for Canon 400 2.8
400 2.8 is a MUST-OWN Lens. It focuses twice as quickly as 600 f/4 and is much sharper.
I try to avoid tripod but it still comes in handy when waiting for landing and taking flight, and videos.