Rode Hard

Location photography for me, back before digital, required multiple cases of lights, stands, modifiers, and cords. Every item I carried had a twin for redundancy.

Managing this pile was a challenge, but it all fit in the belly of a plane without overage charges when I flew with an assistant.

Then 9/11 happened.

From then on, it became functionally impossible to take all of it with us. My only option was to duplicate the entire kit and start shipping the gear ahead on UPS and FedEx.

It didn’t take long for the cases to get a patina from all of the hopscotching from place to place.

Eventually, digital took hold and the need for all of that lighting gear diminished. I hit a milestone in 2006 when I was able to compress everything to the point that I was “carry-on only” for my work.

From there I started to downsize for good. It took three times as long to divest myself of all the gear as it did to acquire it.

This aluminum Halliburton case was the last to leave.

It won’t be missed.

About the author: I am Stephen Kennedy, an experienced photographer with more than 2500 completed sessions in all 50 US states.

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