Equipment I Use to Capture Fine Art Photography {Metro Detroit Photographer}

March 27, 2021

Kat Figlak Photography Fine Art Photography Equipment

I get asked often what kind of equipment I use to capture my fine art photography style.  First, what is fine art photography?  Fine art Photography is a photography style that expresses the artists style (in this case me).  They are images that are expressive and are created to be displayed as a piece of art.  When considering what equipment I choose to use during sessions I want to use lenses that will create soft, dreamy backgrounds.  I often shoot in low light conditions so I want to make sure the lenses I use will work for those environments.  I want to make sure my clients in the image are tack sharp and stand out in the photograph.

With keeping all those things in mind here are the tools I use to photograph my clients at their custom photography sessions.

My camera body is a Nikon D800.  Nikon has since updated this body with the D850.  This camera is a beast, the file sizes are nice and large so I can print my clients photos nice and large if they would like.

When shooting in studio I like to use my Nikon 24-70 f2.8 most of the time.  This lens is so versatile and allows me to shoot at different focal lengths depending on how close or far I am from my subjects.  I will also use my Nikon 105 f2.8 macro lens during newborn sessions to capture all of the tiny details that babies have and parents want to remember.  And lastly sometimes I will use my trusty Nikon 50mm f1.4.  This lens is a great starter lens for photographers and creates beautiful images.  I just find that sometimes I need more of a range with the distances I shoot so that is why my Nikon 24-70 f2.8 is used more often.

Kat Fi

Here is an example of my 24-70mm 2.8 in use.  This lens is great for in studio shots.  It gives great detail and sharpness.

Here is an example of my 105mm f/2.8 Micro lens in use.  This lens is perfect for the up close detail shots that I get for my newborn clients.  This lens allows me to get super close to the baby without loosing focus of the image.  This is perfect for photographing all the small details that parents don’t want to forget such as toes, eyelashes, hairlines and baby hands.

Here is an example of a photo taken with my Nikon 50mm 1.4.  Even with its short focal length when shooting at an f-stop of f/1.4 this lens fives dreamy soft backgrounds and works well in low light situation or when you want to be closer to your subjects.

 

When shooting my outdoor images my Nikon 200mm f2.0 is usually always on my camera.  I LOVE THIS LENS!!!!  It has been called the best portrait lens that Nikon has ever made and I would have to say I agree.  This lens is large and heavy but so worth it.  This lens is what gives me my soft dreamy backgrounds for the perfect fine art portraits.  I also have a Nikon 70-200mm f2.8 zoom lens in my bag incase I need to get a little closer to my subjects.  For years my 70-200mm lens never left my camera outdoors until I purchased my 200mm f2.0

Here is an example of a photo taken with my Nikon 200mm f2.0.  This lens gives me the best dreamy soft back grounds and because I am able to shoot it wide open at an f-stop of f/2.0 this lens is the best I have for low light situations.  

This is another example of my Nikon 200mm 2.0 in use.  I use this lens for all of my lake shots!  Again, it gives soft backgrounds making my subjects pop and because my lake photos are taken at sunset or shortly after I need a great lens for low light situations.  

Here is a photo taken with my Nikon 70-200 f2.8.  In the case of this photo I wanted to get closer to the children than my 200mm f2.0 would allow me.  This lens when shot wide open still gives wonderful soft backgrounds.

 

Lastly, I also have a drone in my bag for fun sky view photos.  The drone I use is the DJI Mavic Air 2.  It’s a great drone and creates crisp photos and video.  It is a great entry level drone for all that it offers.  If you are looking to get a drone I would highly recommend this one.

Here is a photo that was taken with my Mavic Air 2.  This one was so much fun!  This drone gives wonderful sharp images.

Here is a list of all the equipment I shared…

1. Nikon D850 Camera body (Replacement for the D800 I shoot with)

2. Nikon 24-70mm 2.8

3. Nikon 105mm 2.8 Macro

4. Nikon 50mm 1.4

5. Nikon 70-200mm 2.8

6. Nikon 200mm 2.0

7. DJI Mavic Air 2

And lastly the bag that holds it all is a Think Tank Streetwalker Pro v2.0.  I love this bag!!!  It holds all my gear and has a very supportive backpack design so it is comfortable to carry.  It is also airline approved so when traveling with my gear it will fit under the seat in front of me.

One important thing to look for when purchasing your Nikon gear is to make sure you purchase from an authorized Nikon dealer!!  You want to make sure you get the USA version of all your cameras and lenses.  This if important so you get the 5 year warranty over the 1 year warranty that is given with the international (gray market) cameras and lenses.  Nikon gear goes on sale from time to time but all the authorized dealers will have the gear for the same price.  If you see a Nikon product that is discounted significantly and is advertised as new than I would not purchase it.  Like the old saying says… “if it’s too good to be true it probably is!”

While all these tools help me achieve the photos I want.  It also takes skill and understanding the fundamentals of photography to ultimately capture the images that my clients have come to love and expect from their fine art photography experience with me.  All of my images are hand edited and finished in Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop.  It has taken me years of learning and practice to achieve a cohesive editing style that I have grown to love and is a reflection of the art that I want clients to enjoy for years to come.

I hope you have enjoyed this post!  Feel free to comment bellow.

Cheers,

Kat

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I can't wait to capture some memories together! Please fill out the form  or send a note directly to katfiglak@gmail.com. If you are inquiring about a Maternity or Newborn session please include your due date in the message section. You can expect a response within 48 hours, Monday through Friday.

Cheers!
Kat

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