What’s In Your Bag: An Editorial and Personal Kit


Bandeep Singh has a longstanding experience of 20 years and is known for his stylised editorial work and fine art photography. His personal work is deeply layered and conceptual. He speaks about the studio lighting setup that he uses on location.

An editorial and personal kit is one that enables me to produce extremely stylised pictures in a timeline that can range anywhere from three minutes to an hour.

Bandeep Singh's Kit

Bandeep Singh’s Kit

1. Wireless Radio Triggers
This lets me remotely control and fire my flash units. It can also work in E-TTL mode which allows me to control the exact ratio of ambient to flash lighting in my scene. I can also remotely release the shutter of my camera with it.

2. Backpacks Rather than Slings
Plenty of photographers get skewed horizons and have levelling issues due to slingbags. While backpacks are not as comfortable as slings, my work does not involve walking around too much.

3. Portable Reflector
A portable reflector is very useful in general. In emergencies, it also doubles up as a softbox. All you need to is bounce the flash off it.

4. A Benevolent Gift
This rosary was given to me by a very old person in Pakistan in 2003. I always keep it with me as a reminder that the best pictures are the ones you receive without much doing from your side.

5. The Reason to go Digital
Before this, I could never get White Balance right. I remember shooting my first image with this camera… that’s when I thought, now you can leave film entirely. Earlier, I would shoot my personal projects with both film and digital.

6. Colour Fidelity with the 70–200
This lens is my standard lens to use when I want absolutely faithful colour reproduction, be it in the studio or anywhere else. I find it also very stable to use because of the tripod collar.

7. Disengaging from the 16–35
I use this lens only when I am shooting documentary or in natural light settings. But I am increasingly moving away from it because it creates a lot of unnecessary drama at the extreme wide angle which I am trying to avoid.

8. Emergency Rations
This is something that I learnt from my photojournalism days. If you are on the move and are travelling, a few packets of tea, coffee and milk powder can keep you fortified.

9. Honeycomb Grid for the Flash
While I do use the flashgun sometimes, to fill light or to trigger strobes, I generally detest working with it. But when I use this grid along with the wireless trigger, it allows me to chisel light from the flashgun however I want.

10. Controlling the Intensity of Light
This set of grids is key equipment for me. The one in the centre is a 32° grid that you don’t find too often these days. They help me focus light with a particular intensity on a particular area.

This article originally appeared in the April 2014 issue of Bette Photography.

Tags: Shooting Technique, Ambarin Afsar, Bandeep Singh, Wireless Radio Triggers, Portable Reflector, Honeycomb Grid for the Flash