How to Pack Smart for a Photo Trip

Camera gear can be bulky and heavy and easily damaged when traveling. Travel photographer, Max Chesnut, has become an expert at packing light for photo trips.

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Pack Like A Pro

Packing light and cohesive for a photo trip is an extraordinarily difficult task to become accustomed to. It's no secret that camera gear is annoyingly bulky, heavy, and can be easily damaged when traveling for miles on end. Luckily, our good friend and lifestyle photographer, Max Chesnut, has become an expert at packing light for all-seasoned photo trips. Follow along Max's 3 short tips to make your next photo adventure a whole lot easier.

How To Pack Smart for a Photo Trip - Max Chesnut
How To Pack Smart for a Photo Trip - Max Chesnut

Use Packing Cubes, Rolling Cloths, and Cable Management Bags

Compartmentalization is an essential aspect to mastering the art of tidying up. When configuring which piece goes where, start by splitting up what's essential vs. non-essential. Put your essentials into properly sized containers and prioritize where each container should be placed inside your bag. Max likes to organize his bag as the following:

  1. Top: Cable management bags for things like chargers, wires, batteries etc. These are fragile and should be places up at the top of the bag so they won't be smushed under heavier items. The batteries are also in an easy-to-reach location in case you need to pull them out and place them in a bin through airport security.
  2. Middle: Clothing cubes are located in the middle of the bag for a nice mid-layer of plushy protection. Aim to have no more than 2 clothing cubes to carry shirts, pants, underwear, and accessories.
  3. Bottom: Bulky items like heavy coats, tripods, or miscellaneous items you cannot live without (like a giant giraffe pajama set). Placing these items at the bottom will leave more room for compacting smaller cubes and bags at the top.
How To Pack Smart for a Photo Trip - Max Chesnut

Photo By: @explorewithmax

Duffles > Rollers

Picking a proper bag in the first place can be rather tricky, but Max believes that duffles are the best go-to. They're usually flexible in shape and can be stuffed in areas of transportation vehicles (train shelves, airplane bins, under the car seat, etc.) much easier than you would a giant roller. Plus... they've got style!

How To Pack Smart for a Photo Trip - Max Chesnut

Photo By: @explorewithmax

How To Pack Smart for a Photo Trip - Max Chesnut

Minimize: Keep It All In One Bag

As a photographer or general creative, it's best to pack all working gear essentials into a smaller backpack as a carry-on. This means your: laptop, camera bodies, lenses, SD cards, camera batteries, film rolls, hard drives, chargers, camera accessories, etc. Stuffing the smaller accessories into a sizable pouch will help better compartmentalize your items in a more secure manner; you don't want your SD cards floating around!

Keep the absolute musts (phone, wallet, and passport) at the top pouch of your bag for a quick and easy access. You'll most likely be pulling these babies out quite often during your travels, so it's best to keep them in an unforgettable spot. Jacket pockets work well, too.

Pro tip: put your laptop in the easiest place possible — you'll have to grab this at least once in order to go through an airport security.

How To Pack Smart for a Photo Trip - Max Chesnut
How To Pack Smart for a Photo Trip - Max Chesnut

Want to learn more from Max and have a chance to travel with him? You’re in luck! Max is guiding a Moment trip to Norway in 2019, where you can explore what the gorgeous Norwegian landscape has to offer: picturesque fishing villages, epic glaciers, infamous bridges, and the magical Lofoten Islands.

COME TRAVEL WITH US


How To Pack Smart for a Photo Trip - Max Chesnut

Happy Travels!

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