Buck's Camera Gear
Folks often ask what equipment I use to get the photos I shoot, so here it is.
I'm using two bodies now, depending on what and how I want to shoot.

Canon 5DMKII / BG-E6 Battery Grip
This is the primary camera body I use.
It's a digital, full-frame professional level camera and, I think, pretty awesome.
You can read all about it by clicking HERE.

In addition to upgrading it with a battery grip, I've also upgraded the focusing screen to the Eg,
which is a grid pattern for help with composition in the viewfinder.

Canon 7D / BG-E7 Battery Grip
This next one is the secondary camera body I use.
It's a digital 'Pro-sumer' level camera and also pretty terrific by most standards.
You can read all about it by clicking HERE.

Canon EF-S 10-22mm
This is my wide angle lens, mostly used for landscapes, but it gets plenty of other use as well.  Distortion is very low for a wide angle lens, making it pretty much the cream of the crop in it's class.  It was specifically designed to be used on the Canon "Pro-sumer" digital cameras - those with a crop factor of 1.6x, so it fits my 7D and 40D bodies.
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 II
This is a prime lens.  That is to say, it's focal length is set at 50mm, so it's not a zoom.  Generally, fixed lenses are much sharper, and that's why I got it, especially for portraits, though it makes a good all-around lens for products and landscapes as well.  Reversed, it makes an interesting macro lens.
Canon EF 85mm f/1.8
My newest lens. Another prime lens, this is great for portraits in particular, but of course that's not all.
Canon EF 24-105mm f/4 L IS
This "L" glass is incredibly sharp and plenty fast for my needs. It's quickly become my standard "walk-around" general-purpose lens.
Sigma 180mm f/3.5 EX DG IF HSM APO Macro
I got this terrific lens  specifically for shooting macros at true 1:1 sizes for better clarity.  As a prime lens, it has a VERY clear focus, compared to my zooms.  I need more prime lenses now that I've got a taste.
Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L IS
This "L" glass has brilliant sharpness, color and contrast characteristics, and is useful for everything from portraits to wildlife.
Canon EF 100-400mm
This is my current EF 'Big Gun' zoom lens, mostly used for shooting wildlife from a distance.  Someday, I hope to get a REALLY BIG GUN, like a Canon EF 500mm prime.  (drool...)
Canon FD 500mm f/4.5
This is my biggest/longest telephoto lens, also used mostly for shooting wildlife from a distance.  It's an older FD mount prime lens.  With no AF, it's manual focus only, helped with the focus point confirmation thanks to the FD to EF adapter made by Ed Mika.
It'll do until I can afford (if ever, at about $5-6 k!) the Super-duper EF version.
Canon EF 1.4X II Extender
This lens fits between the camera body and other (Canon) lenses to extend their zoom by a factor of 1.4 times what the lens' original zoom was.  So, for example, 400mm becomes 560mm.
Canon 2x Extender
This lens does the same as above, but extends by a factor of 2.  So, for example, 400mm becomes 800mm. I should say at this point that you can't get something for nothing, and that's true with this extender. Focus is a little softer than I'd like, and I rarely actually use it.
Canon Angle Finder C
This small lens fits onto the eyepiece of the camera and allows me to view and compose  from angles not easily accessible, like when the camera is right on the ground, I can look in from above. It also enlarges the view by 1.25x or 2.5x for more precise focusing ability.
Kenko Extension Tubes
This set of tubes fits in any combination between the camera body and lens to shorten the minimum focal distance allowable by the lens.  In effect, it means I can put these onto my 'Big Gun' and turn it into a pretty powerful macro lens because I can then focus on things VERY close to the front of the lens.  It was a low cost way to get decent macro shots until I could afford a real dedicated macro lens like the Sigma 180mm described above. 
Yongnuo YN-560 III Flash
These fantastic, yet inexpensive speedlights have radio triggers built right in, which is handy.  I have 4 of them, but may get more in the future.
Yongnuo YN-565EX Flash
Adding to my speedlites, I've got two of these also. They work very well for a lot less money than the Canon 580EXII flashes that they reverse-engineered.  I tested these for 2 years and then sold off the two Canon 580 EX II speedlites I originally had.

Canon ST-E2 Flash Commander
This sits atop my camera body, connected via the hotshoe, and controls my off-camera lighting, including ratios.
Radio Poppers
These are the radio transmitters and receivers I use to communicate between the camera body / commander and Canon speedlites when I feel a need for ETTL capabiity. In truth, that's not very often, and I usually just go with my...
Yongnuo RF-603-CF Triggers
Much cheaper than the Radio Poppers, or other ETTL capable triggers, I usually use these for firing my lights. I have 6 of them at this time.
Canon CP-E4 Power Pack
These connect to my speedlight flashes to speed up recycle time and to extend shooting sessions without changing out batteries.
Pixel TD-381 Power Pack
These also connect to my Speedlight flashes to speed up recycle time and to extend shooting sessions without changing out batteries, and they're less expensive than the Canon brand packs.
Bogen-Manfrotto 3205GN3 "Tracker" Tripod

This is a really good, sturdy, steady tripod, but not too heavy for me to carry into the field with me, which is important for the kind of shooting I like to do.

And it'sgreen. 'Nuffsaid. ;>)

I use two other tripods as well, a ProMaster T325P Carbon Fiber and a Calumet 7500 series with a Calumet 7045 ball head. I really like the Calumet about as much as the Manfrotto. Excellent product.

Bogen-Manfrotto 488rco
Ball Head
Parked on top of the tripod, this is what actually holds the camera in place for a good steady shot.
Manfrotto 410
Junior Geared Head
For more precise work with macro or laser measuring, I use this head.
Adorama Macro Focus Rails
Also for more precise work with macro, I use these macro focus rails.
Buck's DIY Gimbal Head
DIY = Do It Yourself, and I'm real big on that.  Gimbal style heads are very expensive, so I made this myself to do the job.  It works REAL well, and makes me VERY happy! Here's a link to a video of it I put on Youtube:
Opteka GH1 Gimbal Head
I've also got this manufactured gimbal head from Opteka. It works very well, even with my big FD mount 500mm Canon Prime.
Pixel Wireless Timer/Remote

This allows me to shoot without touching the camera, by remote control.  It allows me to get closeups of birds without spooking them.  I also use this for shooting long exposures, so that my camera doesn't move at all from me touching it to press the shutter directly.  In addition, it has a timer feature that will shoot a programmed series of shots at intervals of my choosing. It's the electronic version of the plungers and bulbs we used in the 'old days'.
Camera Axe

The Camera Axe is a computerized trigger unit for VERY precise triggering using sound, lasers, motion, light or other methods. With this, I can capture colliding water drips, bursting baloons or projectiles like BBs and pellets.
AmScope 40x-2000x
Trinocular Microscope

When I want to REALLY zoom in, I shoot through this microscope with an adapter that allows my cameras to connect to it.
Samsung Galaxy Tab
10.1" 32 GB Tablet

In the studio, and especially when using the microscope or for macro shooting, I use this and an app called DSLR Controller to get a nice big live view for better control.

I can use it for remote viewing and shooting
up to 15 feet away using a longer tether.
Buck's Tablet Setup
Sekonic L-558R Light Meter
This is what I use to measure lighting in special situations, such as portrait shooting with studio flash heads, soft boxes, reflectors and so on. 
I do all my color and effects filtering in Photoshop these days, rather than directly on the camera, because I have much more control that way.  But I still use a variety of polarizers and neutral density filters as needed in front of my lenses.
Lowepro Backpack
This is what I use on extended field trips.  It's the Photo Trekker AW II and holds everything I need for a photo adventure, including a cool tripod holder system, a place for my drink, and even a little folding field chair I found at the Discovery Channel store that I've attached to it.  Beyond how much it holds, it's got real comfort, with lumbar support and a harness system second to none to fit a human comfortably on a long trek.
Gisteq Photo Trackr
This GPS device records my position wherever I happen to be, then matches the photos I took with the position and writes the data into the photo's EXIF file for easy mapping purposes.  With all my traveling, this comes in REAL handy, rather than trying to guess where the heck I was, exactly, as I try to map the photo into Google Earth.  I've modified mine to hold two batteries in an external case, so that it will last longer, making it more dependable to me on longer adventures without feeling a need to check to make sure it's still functioning.
Buck's DIY MFB
Another Do It Yourself project, MFB stands for  Macro Flash Bracket.  You can see photos of how I built and use it and read more about it HERE
          Other Stuff
          In addition to the main stuff above, I've got an assortment of support jazz, like...

  • 52 Gigs of high speed CF cards and various high speed readers.
  • A 60 Gig rechargeable battery powered hard drive for field transfers of CF cards
  • 4 batteries for the 7D/5DMKII and two chargers for them with wall and auto adapters
  • Tons of Rechargeable Eneloop batteries and chargers to keep the flashes and the GPS Trackr and everything else online
  • Inverter for the vehicle so that I'll have wall power even when I'm away from walls
  • Garmin Nuvi 3790 GPS unit to get directly to specific sites (and find my vehicle after a hike!)
  • A good compass (we used these before GPS, and I can't let go of the past... hehehe)
  • A "Y" adapter cable to put the two flashes together for the macro flash bracket
  • 5 Studio Strobes
  • 1 Hair Light
  • About a dozen Light Stands of various sizes, 2 large booms, and a couple of reflector arms
  • Half a dozen various sized soft boxes
  • Several umbrellas of various sizes and types, shoot-through, reflective and umbrella-boxes
  • Several gold, silver, white and black reflectors/flags
  • Various diffuser sheets and panels
  • Snoots, barn doors and full size color gels with brackets to hold and position them
  • 10' X 12' Background stand
  • Several various backdrops (black, white, Chroma-green, painted muslins)
  • A large Pelican Case for protecting my gear in transit
  • A couple of smaller shoulder style camera bags for short jaunts
  • A smaller (than the Lowepro Trekker) backpack for medium range excursions
  • A ThinkTank Belt style Holster system that works great for excursions as well
  • A mini tripod, the Ultra-Pod II, that can be strapped to tree limbs, sign posts and so forth with it's velcro strap, a large suction cup mount for cars or windows, a window mount for car windows, super-clamps, Justine clamps, and several other types of mounting options for cameras and lights
  • Oodles of cleaning supplies, cloths, brushes, Rocket air blaster, sterile surgical Q-tips, Kimwipes, and a full Arctic Butterfly kit for my sensor cleaning
  • Adobe Lightroom 5 for processing the RAW files I shoot
  • Adobe Photoshop CS6 and Photoshop CC for my digital darkroom needs
  • Photomatix and Dynamic HDR for my HDR work
  • Canon i9900 photo printer - Photos up to 13" x 19" look great from it
  • Epson 1400 photo printer - Photos up to 13" x 19" look great from this too
  • Viewsonic 27" VX2739wm Monitor extended to an Acer 24" GD235HZbid 120Hz 3D monitor
  • LG W2353VP Monitor for use with my laptop while on the road contrast ratio
  • Colormunki Display Calibration System for calibrating my  monitor
  • 14 TB (Yes, Tera Bytes!) of storage space for plenty of redundant backup via E-SATA II in external hard drive enclosures.
  • Gaffer's tape, black foil, super glue, hot glue, baling wire, insect repellent, rain gear, boots, kneepads and band-aids!

          Photography sites on the web that I like
  • Flickr - For now, my main place to share my photos - I like the interface for categorizing and sorting.
  • ShutterBuck.com   - My future photo business site, not quite ready yet.
  • Panoramio - Where I upload photos I'd like to share in Google Earth.
  • Strobist - A very cool blog dedicated to flash photography techniques, usually on the cheap.
  • Light Studio Blog - Another great blog full of informative photo lighting ideas and tips.
  • DIY Photography - Another terrific site full of Do It Yourself photo stuff.
  • DPReview - A fantastic resource for Digital Camera information.
  • PhotoSIG - A critique site that can work as a terrific photography educational tool.


  One more link, to a photography cartoonist's funny stuff:

          Have fun and keep snappin'!