When you choose a workshop and make all the arrangements for your trip, you want to arrive with what you need. While gear doesn’t make the artist, having a checklist handy while you are packing can prevent being in a beautiful place with a dead battery and no charger.
The following is a list of basic items to consider for your packing list to optimize your time at the workshop.
Camera: Bring your DSLR, or any camera on which you can manually adjust your aperture, shutter speed and ISO. If you have a backup body and/or a favorite point and shoot camera, bring them along, too.
Camera Manual: For each camera you bring along, make sure its manual comes too. While the instructors are well-acquainted with their own cameras, they may not know yours. Your manual can help answer a “how-to” or a “where is” question for a new technique or a new function with your camera.
Comfortable Carrying System: Make sure the carrying system you choose to carry your equipment in the field is comfortable and easy for you.
Batteries: Extra batteries can save the images at the end of a long day in the field or in cold temperatures. Be sure to have at least 1 or 2 extra batteries as well as the battery charger for your model.
Memory Cards: Include extra memory cards. Shooting in RAW is recommended, and those large files can fill up a card quickly.
Lenses: Include all your favorite lenses to cover wide angle (17-20mm) to telephoto (100-400) or as much of that range as you have. If you have a specialty lens like a macro, the Lensbaby or a fisheye, be sure to bring it. A workshop is a great time to try an old lens in a new way. You will receive more specific recommendations once you register for a particular workshop.
Tripod: Be sure to include a sturdy tripod. Even with the wonderful advancements in image stabilization lenses, a tripod is still a necessity for a stunning image in some situations.
Flashlight or headlamp: A flashlight is always helpful and can be a necessity when walking in or out of shooting locations in the dark. It can also be very useful for light painting when shooting at night.
Filters: Bring filters if you have them. The one filter to make sure you have in your bag is the circular polarizer.
Laptop: Bring your laptop with power cord, your favorite photo-editing software and your card reader.
Clothing: Remember the onion – Dress in layers, appropriate for the season and locale. Workshops may span many hours in the day, temperatures, and even elevation changes. A rain poncho is always a good addition to your camera bag. Check the extended weather forecast for the workshop location and come as prepared as you can. Good comfortable walking shoes or hiking boots are a must. A hat for protection from the sun, or warmth if in a cold climate is a good item ot include. A more specific suggestion for clothing will be sent to you for each workshop for which you register.
Personal toiletries and medications: Don't forget your medications and personal toiletries. It's a great idea to carry your medications with you onboard if you are flying. Sunscreen and lip balm are always good items to bring along. Other items will be suggested for the specific workshop for which you register.