You can tell a lot about a photographer with the gear he carries. Now, let's put the spotlight on up-and-coming photographer Gabrial Deacon and the things he can't leave home without.
What's in your everyday bag?
My everyday bag consists of a broad array of items. Item number one of course is a camera… You aint a photographer if you don’t have one with you at all times. Other than a camera or two my bag always contains my note book; after all you never know when you’re going see or acknowledge something that can inspire a photographic or visual idea. To compliment my notebook a pen is obviously always present, otherwise it would be rendered useless.
I also carry around my smoking box which contains everything needed to get the subject and myself feeling relaxed and ready for the shoot. A few spare rolls of film are always present, alongside a spare battery and a few coloured flash filters just in case I decide to get artsy. A back up camera is also always necessary! I cannot tell you how annoying it can get when your camera breaks on a shoot and you have nothing to work with…
What's your everyday shooter?
My everyday shooter varies every few months. However, it can be safely assured that my everyday shooter must be a point and shoot camera. In my early street photography days my go to camera was either my Nikon F90x or my Nikon F501, and don’t get me wrong they’re amazing cameras within an environment where you have time to prepare for your photograph (like a studio). However, within a street environment these cameras do struggle and I have honestly missed many photographic opportunities because of it. Its only when I switched to point and shoots that my street work and photography in general developed. Point and shoots are so versatile; you can take a photograph without the subject even knowing you’ve looked at them. My Leica Z2X is my favourite point and shoot… The shutter is dangerously silent and the broad array of flash settings means that you can triumph from any photographic scenario.
How do you decide when to go film or digital?
In a sense the decision between photographing through a digital or film format all depends on what or whom I am shooting. If I’m on location, then film will be the only photographic form I will use. However, if I am in the studio then digital will always be my first option. I don’t like using light or flash metres, so therefore my Nikon D300 acts as a tool of preparation. I get the image exactly how I want it through my digital, then use the selected exposure time and aperture within one of my film cameras…That way I have full control of how my image develops and evolves. I will always favour film over digital… Saying that though, digital is a fantastic way of learning and experimenting with the camera and photography in general.
What are the top 3 things you absolutely must have in your everyday life?
Film, a camera and some bud. I know there’s a lot of people that have a negative association with weed, but personally for me it acts as a tool of creativity, relaxation and awareness.
Tell us a bit about your bag. How long have you had it and what's your favorite thing about it?
I’m going to be completely honest with you and say that I got my bag on sale. My girlfriend had been wanting me to replace my old bag which was falling to bits… I’d probably had it since I was about 16. Even though I got it on sale I respect converse for their skate team so I’d sooner rock that rather than have a legit camera bag. I just find them far too bait and awkward… I don’t want every person that walks past me to know I’ve got all my equipment with me. It can often cause you to lose the odd photograph here n’ there.
Pack light or bring everything?
This is very similar to the film or digital situation…It all depends on what I’m doing that day. However, my usual set up is my Leica Z2x, my Nikon F501, usually another back-up point and shoot and finally my VHS. My VHS is old school, its recorded some mad things like my first steps and first words etc... I like cameras that have a history to them, knowing that they’ve physically experienced some crazy things is what fascinates me so much about them. It gives them an individual and unique sense of character.
Take a peek into other photographers' essentials. Check out the rest of What's In Your Bag? series!