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Inside My Camera Bag | Ian Ford

Greetings, I’m Ian Ford, and I’m delighted to introduce myself and share insights into my camera gear here on Shotkit.

I’m honoured to be the winner of the Natural World and Wildlife category in the 2024 Sony World Photography Awards, recognised for my image “Caiman Crunch,” captured in the breathtaking Pantanal region of Brazil.

Following the buzz generated by the awards, I decided to establish a digital platform for my portfolio.

Photography has been a steadfast passion of mine for countless years, dating back to my early twenties, when I first used a Minolta SLR Film Camera.

Since then, I’ve enthusiastically photographed various subjects, from the mundane to the extraordinary.

My photography journey has been intertwined with my professional endeavours, notably founding a travel agency in the UK in 1995. This venture afforded me the privilege of combining work with the joy of photography, leading me to explore myriad awe-inspiring destinations worldwide.

In recent years, I’ve increasingly devoted myself to wildlife photography, embarking on numerous safaris across Africa and extensive travels throughout South America.

The allure of wildlife photography lies in its demand for patience and readiness to seize fleeting moments of action. The unpredictability adds an exhilarating dimension, rewarding those who adeptly capture the essence of the moment.

My expertise spans capturing both mammals and birds, honed through relentless practice and drawing inspiration from fellow photographers’ work and advice.

Transitioning from my trusty Canon EOS 60D to the Sony A7R Mark II marked a significant technological leap. I’ve since remained loyal to the brand, upgrading my equipment to keep pace with advancements in camera technology.

Presently, I’m using the amazing Sony A1 as my primary camera, complemented by the recent addition of the Sony A9 Mark III.

These cameras deliver astounding autofocus capabilities, with the Sony A1 boasting an impressive 30FPS and the Sony A9 reaching a crazy 120FPS.

The ability to precisely lock focus on subjects’ eyes is nothing short of remarkable, enhancing the quality and precision of my shots.

My choice of Sony lenses varies depending on the shooting location. The  Sony FE 600mm f/4 GM is my go-to for birding expeditions, and the Sony FE 400mm f/2.8 accompanies me on safari adventures.

I always pack the 1.4x and 2x Teleconverters for added versatility.

Additionally, I ensure to carry essential lenses like the Sony FE 70-200mm f/2.8, alongside either the Sony FE 24-70mm f/2.8 or the Sony FE 16-35mm f/2.8, tailored to the proximity of subjects.

For stability during shoots, I rely on a Wimberley Gimbal and my trusted Gitzo tripod, though I predominantly shoot handheld, facilitated by the convenience of a Black Rapid Dual Camera Harness.

Transporting my gear is made effortless with the Mindshift Gear Backlight 36L Backpack, renowned for its spaciousness and compatibility with airline carry-on regulations. I often enlist my partner to share the load, maximizing our collective capacity for photographic equipment.

Post-processing of my images predominantly occurs in Lightroom Classic, occasionally supplemented by Photoshop.

To tackle noise reduction, I use the capabilities of Topaz AI and Lightroom Classic, leveraging software technology advancements to enhance image quality, particularly in challenging low-light conditions.

In parting, I encourage fellow enthusiasts to immerse themselves in the beauty of nature, relishing each moment, whether it’s awaiting a majestic sunrise, the appearance of elusive wildlife, or the thrill of capturing the perfect shot.

In my bag:

Sony Alpha A9 Mark III
Sony Alpha A1
Sony FE 600mm f/4
Sony FE400mm f/2.8
Sony FE 70-200mm mk2 f/2.8
Sony FE 24-70mm f/2.8 GM
Sony FE 16-35mm f/2.8
Sony FE 90mm f/2.8
Sony 1.4x teleconverter
Sony 2.0x teleconverter
Sigma 85mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art
Sigma 14mm f/1.4 DG HSM Art

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