My Top Video Gear for Road Trips and Travel

(Side note: The above photo is just a stock photo, not my actual gear. I thought it looked nice.  But who puts a potted plant in their lineup???)

Many times when people watch my travel videos, they ask “what’d you shoot that on?” or “you must have brought a lot of gear on that trip!”  And what I’ve realized is that many people think gear is everything. They think having the top gear is how you make a great video.  I used to believe this too.  I’ve been guilty of saying “Well, if I had X camera, I could do that too.”  But the truth is I couldn’t.  Good story and execution is what makes a video great.  Everything else are just tools (although I fully admit great gear can elevate your work).  Once I learned this, I stopped focusing so much on having the best gear.  I still buy stuff and I still plan on upgrading from time to time, but the gear I don’t have never stops me from trying to make great videos.

But, when people are just starting out and getting into video as a hobby, sometimes they don’t even know what’s what.  “What do I even need?”  It helps to peek into someone else’s bag and get an idea.  So that’s why I’m making this list.  This is the gear I use to make my videos.  It’s in no way the best, the only way, or even comprehensive, but I hope it serves as a good starting point.

Bag – Almost all my gear can fit in this bag.  It’s great knowing that it’s all in one place. Plenty of space for a few lenses, the front opens for easy access, and there are compartments for batteries, cables, and random things you want to throw in there.

Lowepro Fastpack 250 DSLR Camera Backpack

Day Bag – When you don’t need your full-size backpack and all of the accessories, this one is much easier to take on a hike or go to the beach.  I actually started with this one and bought the bigger 250 once my gear grew.

Lowepro Fastpack 100

Camera – I have the Canon 60d.  It’s old now.  It doesn’t shoot in 4k or capture slow motion footage.  But it’s still capable of shooting great looking video and photos that I’m happy with.  Until I make some serious extra cash, it’s not going anywhere.

Canon 60d

Lens – My Canon 17-55mm lens gives me variety to shoot things both close and far away, portrait style and wide.   I use this lens the most.

Canon EF-S 17-55mm

Wide lens – When I’m shooting landscapes and I really want to show the vastness, I’ll pop on this lens.

Tokina 11-16mm

Circular Polarizer – Improves color and contrast while reducing glare. Really helpful on bright days.  Kinda like sunglasses!

Tiffen Circular Polarizer

Microphone – The microphone on most DSLR cameras is pretty lousy.  I like this one because it’s small, produces good sound, and mounts directly on top of the camera.

Rode VMGO Video Mic GO

GoPro – When I’m going in the water or want to try something creative/risky with the camera, I’ll pull out my GoPro.  I like the accessibility it provides.  You can get shots you normally wouldn’t be able to.

GoPro Hero 4 Black (Previous model)

Cell Phone Battery Packs – If you film with your phone, you’ll want the extra juice to last you through the day.

Anker PowerCore+ mini

External Hard Drive – Having an external hard drive to store all this footage is key.  I like the rugged drives because of their durability.  That’s important when moving around all the time.  A little pricey, but good.

LaCie Rugged Thunderbolt and USB 3.0 2 TB

Phone Tripod – I’ll shoot time lapses or just set up an establishing shot with my phone.  Being able to place it exactly how I want is key.

Tripod or Bendy Tripod – Useful for your big camera too.  Great for night-lapse, long exposure photography, or interesting angles.

MacBook Pro – This is what I have, but there are plenty of great Windows options for editing too.

 

 

Let me know if you have any questions.  I hope this short list was helpful for anyone interested in video and photography.

-Randy

 

DISCLAIMER

Road Trip Randy is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.

I’m Teaching On Udemy: How To Make Videos

Ever since I started making videos, I’ve gotten a lot of questions about how I do things.  How did you edit like that?   What should I do if I want to start making my own videos?  What kind of camera should I get?

I’ve also always wanted to create an online course.  There’s a small bit of entrepreneur in me.  I wasn’t sure what the topic would be though, because I felt like I had a lot of random skills and knowledge, but not enough in one area.  Then I remembered I have a film degree, work in Hollywood, and constantly make and edit my own videos.   I do know a few things!  So I sat down and wrote out a rough outline and realized I have enough material to create a nice course for beginners.

And that’s what I did. How To Make Videos: Learn Production Basics From Scratch is my video course for beginners.  If you’re interested in making videos for your own brand or just as a hobby and you have no background in it at all, you might enjoy this.  Check out the course description (about halfway down the page) and decide for yourself: https://www.udemy.com/learn-video-production-basics-from-scratch/learn/v4/overview

video production for beginners

I’ve even got a coupon code for readers of this blog.  If you purchase my course by the end of July you’ll get it for 50% off.  $10!

Use This Link To Get 50% Off

 

And if you don’t care about learning how to make videos, no worries. I’ll still post to this blog very regularly (currently that seems to be once every three months).

Thanks for reading!

-Randy

 

MICHIGAN HAS REAL BEACHES

Apparently, if you’re not from the flawless, beautiful, picturesque state of perfection known as California, you don’t have real beaches.

My California friends don’t seem to realize that there are other people around the country (and world) that live quite contently even though they don’t permanently reside in California.  These people go about their day walking the dog, going to work, and hanging out with friends.  They sometimes have to put on a light jacket, but they still find happiness in life! INCREDIBLE!

Some Californians refuse to accept this.  Such arrogance was shown when I told one of my Golden State friends that I was going back to Michigan to celebrate the 4th of July on the beach.

“You know that’s not a real beach right?”

I’ll show you what a real beach is. Cue the video: