Inside My Camera Bag | Samuel Andersen

I am Samuel Andersen, a freelance photographer based in Lillehammer, Norway.
I am not a full-time photographer – but photography has been my side hustle since 2009. I do shoot a lot of people in sports, events and weddings.
Photography is my creative outlet and a fun arena where I can be challenged by conditions and push my mind and gear.
I am a Sony shooter. I have used the e-mount system since my first Sony Alpha 7R II. But before my Sony era, I had a lovely time shooting with Canon cameras.
My first DSLR was a Canon EOS 400D, followed by the Canon EOS 5D Mark II. After some crazy years of doing a lot of real estate photography, I hit a creative rut and sold all my gear.
After a couple of years, the bug got me again, and I started building my new kit when Sony cameras showed significant progress with mirrorless full-frame cameras. With great full-frame sensors and new focus technology, I was hooked.
I jumped on the latest technology train with Sony, got a Sony Alpha 7 R II, and never looked back.
When the Sony Alpha 9 was released, I was mind-blown. That camera changed how I work creatively as a sports and event photographer.
With blazing fast eye-tracking autofocus, a fast stacked sensor, silent shooting, and a blackout-free electronic viewfinder, that camera made me a camera Ninja. I can be deadly silent when working, which lets me get the shots I want without being intrusive to the surroundings.
Sony Alpha 1 – This is my A-camera and all-time favourite camera. It is the best all-round camera and my favourite piece of gear. As a tool this camera does it all, great for stills in all situations and video.
Sony Alpha 7 IV – This is my B-camera. It is a baby Sony Alpha 1, replacing my Sony Alpha 9. This camera has significant problems for me as a shooter. The first problem is the flip-and-tilt screen. I am primarily a stills shooter, and I have problems with this kind of screen.
It’s strange to me to have to shoot with the screen tilted to the side. I have trouble making pictures straight and symmetrical in the camera using the screen.
The other problem is that slow readout sensors make it hard to use the electronic shutter in all kinds of situations. So, I can’t shoot silent in most indoor situations.
It was a good upgrade from the old Sony Alpha 9, but a camera will soon replace this camera with a stacked sensor.
Now for all my lenses:
TTartisan 11mm f/2.8 ED Fisheye – This is a manual-focus lens. It’s a very special lens for limited situations. Using this lens, I won the Sony World Photography Award 2024 in the Open category. It’s that one picture that stands out every once in a while.
Sony FE 16-35mm f/2.8 GM – is my favourite wide-angle lens of all time. I love using this range so much in events and sports when I end up close. This is the ultimate storyteller lens and a must for all photographers.
I sold my Sony FE 24-70mm f/2.8 GM because I just love using this lens. I may upgrade to the Sony FE 16-35mm f/2.8 GM aII, mostly for faster autofocus and better image quality in backlit situations.
Sony FE 24mm f/1.4 GM – This is a great little lens. I use it when I need more light. It sometimes suffers in backlit situations, but overall, it is a great lens that I enjoy a lot. It has saved me in many weddings and concerts in challenging low-light situations.
I use the  Sony FE 24–105mm f/4 G OSS for run and gun video shooting. I love this lens for this purpose; I really like the look with F4 in many situations, making the video footage look more grown up and professional and shooting wide open with a faster prime, in my opinion.
Sony FE 50mm f/1.2 GM – This is a recent addition to my kit, and I am in love with it already. It’s been a long time since I owned a 50mm, and it’s fresh to me that I have been on the 85mm train for so many years. It has great image quality, superb autofocus, and a low-light monster with a fast 1.2 aperture.
Sony FE 70-200 mm F2.8 GM OSS II – This lens is my moneymaker. It’s the safe choice for doing it all in sports and events. The image quality is great, and it has mind-blowing autofocus. I remember when I first tried this compared to the old, and I was shocked and sold. In most situations that I work with, the 70-200 mm is paired with a 16-35 mm on my second camera body.
Sony FE 85mm f/1.4 GM – This lens is starting to get old and outdated. Especially the focus for my work, I am more drawn to the 50mm and the 135mm.
Sony FE 135mm f/1.8 GM – This lens is great for sports, weddings, and events. It is maybe one of the sharpest lenses I have used. It is very fast and has a lovely bokeh. This is also a “wannabe macro” lens that makes for great detail shots at weddings and concerts.
Sony FE 200–600mm f/5.6–6.3 G OSS – I recently got this primarily to shoot for fun, sports for my kid and amateur wildlife trips.
Sony FE 400 mm f/2.8 GM – My baby and childhood dream. I had to work a lot to acquire this masterpiece of a lens.
When shooting with a lens like this, it’s both easy and challenging. It’s easy to get good pictures, but it’s very challenging to get great pictures. It does get you pictures most other shooters don’t get, but it’s important not to get lazy and push yourself using this weapon of choice.
Try to be close, shoot through objects, and think outside the box. It’s mostly used for sports and big events and is great to have in the armoury.
I have the Sony FE 1.4X Tele Converter and the Sony FE 2.0X Tele Converter. I don’t use them much; I prefer the 1.4X teleconverter over the 2.0X teleconverter as it’s sharp enough to use in most cases.
I only use Evoc camera backpacks; they are practical and flexible for my kit. The back opens up, making it fast to open and close with great storage.
Evoc CP 35L – The bag is used with a long lens and is often packed with 400mm and 70-200mm lenses, with a camera body attached. Two additional lenses, a cleaning kit, extra batteries, memory cards, Peak Designs slide camera straps, and a bottle of water are also in one of the two side pockets.
Evoc CP 26L – This is the bag that I mostly use. It holds two camera bodies with lenses, often 70-200mm and 16-35mm, three additional lenses, a cleaning kit, extra batteries, memory cards, Peak Designs slide camera straps, and a bottle of water in the side pocket.
Also, a light jacket, this backpack has a big compartment, making it easy to fit items in the backpack on the go.
Peak Designs Slide Camera Straps – I’ve been using these for years. This accessory will improve your shooting experience, and it’s my first recommendation to new photographers.
Sony ECM-B10 – This clever little shotgun microphone runs on power from the camera mounted in the multi-shoe. It’s great for run-and-gun video if you are a Sony shooter. It’s better to have this small mic than its bigger brother; it takes up less space and packs a punch.
DJI Mavic Pro 2 – My trusted drone has been very reliable. I bought it for the bigger sensor at the time. It has never failed me, and considering its age, it delivers good video and stills.
When it dies, it will be replaced by a DJI Mavic Mini Pro of the latest generation at the time of purchase.
The Delkin CF Express Type A BLACK is my memory card of choice. I have several, and they have never failed me. They are fast and reliable, and they have a great warranty.
My computer of choice is Apple. At home, I use an Apple Mac mini M1 on a 32″ UltraFine (32UN880) 4K UHD IPS HDR10 Ergo Monitor. I really like this monitor, and that combo as a workstation at the home office is a far better option for me than an Apple iMac 27″ that I have had in the past.
On the go, I use an older Apple MacBook Pro 16″ from 2019. This one will soon be upgraded, but I do most of my editing at home, so I will try to wait as long as possible.
As for storage, I edit my projects on SanDisk Extreme Pro Portable SSD 2TB and transfer finished projects to Lacie 2 Big disk I have for slow storage. They are also synced to the cloud.
As for software, I primarily use Adobe Lightroom Classic for my workflow, occasionally taking a trip to Adobe Photoshop CC. I do use Topaz software in tricky situations.
Gear is fun; we all love it – but to be a better photographer, it’s important to go out and shoot.
Practice a lot, try different things, shoot with others and learn from your mistakes.
My mindset is to try, fail, learn and repeat.
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