Just print this out.
Checklist of fieldwork items to bring:
1. A tripod with a 'ball head'. If needed, low priced rentals are available from Michael. We carry a couple of lines for sale, you want light weight, yet sturdy.
2. Tripod bag- (not a 'must-have'), but takes the hassle out of carrying the tripod, throw it over the shoulder when not in use and 'fa-gett-about-it'.
3. Camera and preferred film (does not matter which kind) or memory card. A spare memory card or two.
4. Camera instruction manual. NEVER leave home without it.
5. Spare batteries. If you don't have them, get them NOW- and make sure they are charged up. Who wants to be making a possible award winning image and then miss out because of this lack of preparedness?
5b. Battery charger -handy for emergency charge ups. It's pretty easy to find a store owner that will let you 'borrow' an electrical outlet. Most re-charge in an hour.
6. Small note pad and pen or pencil for making field notes.
7. Hat and suntan screen. Especially if you are fair skinned. 99% of the time it's very sunny here. For your northerners flying in: even if it's overcast, fair skinned people tend to get sun burnt due to our southern location in So. California, closer to the equator.
8. Filters. Mainly, a Polarizer Filter... They screw onto the front of your lens- (for most lenses, but not all). If you have an 'auto focus' camera, you will need the 'circular polarizer', if you don't, a regular 'linear' one is the type you will need, and those are less expensive. They run about $50 -$60, depending on brand name/style needed. The best money you will ever spend, besides taking a Seewald class or getting the right tripod and ball head ;/) .
A UV filter, for the times you take off the polarizer, is something one should have too.
Most of the 'low end' digital cameras will not have screw-on filter capability, but you can hand hold your polarized sunglasses (means you need to buy polarized sunglasses, not all sunglass are) over the lens for the same effect in many cases, or buy the filter and just hold it over it too, as the ear piece from sunglasses are hard to work around.
9. Rain gear/ layered clothing. (Umbrella and rain poncho) change of clothes or layering of clothes (you can leave it all in your car if it's not threatening or at home if it's not in the forecast at all- if you trust them that is). Michael always has a small, fold up umbrella he sticks in his photo-vest pocket (most pro-jackets have a place for them) and a rain poncho folded up and stuffed in the back pocket of the jacket. If he knows it will rain, he puts a 'golf umbrella' in with his tripod in his tripod bag to make sure shooting in the rain is actually fun. You see, rain is your friend if you can stay dry (as you can make spectacular photos in it when everyone else is cowering under door entryways or inside).
10. A photo backpack. For those of your real serious shooters with many lenses (and if you are, you probably already have one), if not, we suggest you do. Seewald now carries some of these too.
11. A 'lupe', helps in reviewing your photos when you're outdoors in bright light conditions. (After so many years of suggesting this 'no-brainer' item, we now carry Hoodman Lupes).
12. A photo jacket not only looks cool, but makes shooting easier (thus more fun) so many things will then be in close reach (sunscreen, rolled up hat, emergency mini-umbrella, compass, etc..).