Alana’s Favorite Things

I’m always asked what gear, accessories, and products I use. Here are some of my favorite things in my camera kit, camera bag, and studio. I’ve also included a few of my favorite educational platforms and software that have helped me during my photography journey.

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Photography Education

Sue Bryce Education is the best photography education online

Sue Bryce Education

Comprehensive Portrait Photography Education

Sue Bryce Education is an online photography education platform for portrait photographers who want to build a profitable and sustainable photography business. You’ll find 1000’s of videos, hundreds of downloadable guides & checklists, live events, and a supportive member community.

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ProEdu

Photography Courses

ProEdu has some great courses on commercial & product photography, CGI, fashion & lifestyle photography, and food photography. You can purchase each course individually or subscribe to gain unlimited access to all content.

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Kelby One

Photography Courses

Kelby One has a wide variety of courses available: from Automotive to Wildlife Photography there is a course for just about everything! Become a KelbyOne Member and you’ll also receive discounts for photography vendors and software.

Lighting

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Gel Transparencies

Creative Tools

Have you tried using colored gels to create dramatic lighting effects? This collection of transparencies work just as well as the name-brand ones.

stella pro lights continous LED action kit

Stella Pro Lights

LED Continuous Lights

Stella Pro Lights made by Light & Motion are the best quality and most durable continuous lights I use in the Alana Lee Photography studio. Save 20% off your first purchase from the Light & Motion website by using our link!

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Hand Held Boom Arm

Lighting

This handheld boom arm by Elinchrom is perfect for location shoots when you don’t want to set up conventional light stands, or are not able to due to restrictions at certain locations.

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Snoot

Lighting

Okay, I’ve always found the name of this accessory funny. But this snoot will help you create a narrow beam of circular light perfect for accenting hair and other creative effects. This particular model has an Elinchrom mount so will work with Elinchrom strobes or the CLx series of Stella Pro LED lights.

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Rotalux Deep Octa 100cm

Light Modifiers

This is my go-to light modifier by Elinchrom that produces directional soft lighting.

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Hair, Makeup & Styling

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Oil Blotting Tissues

Studio Makeup Kit Essential

Have shine on skin that you want to remove in an instant? These blotting papers are an essential tool in your studio or camera bag, and you’ll want to put some in your purse, locker, desk, or vehicle as well for quick touch-ups! Powder-free and perfect for both men & women.

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Anti Shine Matifying Gel

Studio Makeup Kit Essential

This is a product tip I picked up from Peter Hurley. I use this for just about every client (and even on myself when I’m not in the studio!) to reduce shine on faces. This gel absorbs oil and gives your skin a perfect matte finish as well as minimizes the appearance of pores.

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Hair Dusting Powder

Studio Makeup Kit Essential

Put dust in your hair? Why yes! OSiS+ Dust It mattifying powder helps to give texture and hold styles in place while giving a matte, non-greasy finish. Pump up the volume with this lightweight powder!

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Brow Styling Gel

Makeup

Since brow styling is a thing, you might as well use the best styling gel out there. This formula holds all day and won’t flake like many other brands.

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Hair Drying Volumizer

Hair Styling

Once you get the hang of it you can achieve a nice volumizing blowout with this popular styling tool by Revlon. Be sure to use a heat-protecting spray if you are using this frequently on your own hair.

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Heat Protectant Spray

Hair Styling

Use this salon-quality protectant to prevent damage and get a sleek shiny, frizz-free finish when styling with flat irons, blow dryers, and curling wands.

Editing Tools & Software

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Wacom Intuos Tablet

Editing

They say it is a steep learning curve to adjust to editing with a stylus and wacom tablet, but I found that it only took a few days to master this skill and I would not want to be without this. I have the medium size but many find that the small is adequate for most retouching needs.

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BenQ Monitor

Editing

The BenQ 27″ monitor features an amazing no-glare screen, color calibration, and has exceptional clarity. It’s easy on the eyes yet delivers exceptional quality for editing images.

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X-Rite Color Checker

Editing

The industry-standard tool for ensuring your colors are true to life. You can also use a color checker to create custom color profiles and adjust the white balance.

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Animoto

Software

Use this link to save 10% off all annual plans from Animoto. Easily make your own videos for client reveals, social media and marketing using drag and drop templates from Animoto.

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Camera & Studio Accessories

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Hot Shoe Cell Phone Holder

Camera Accessories

Mount your cell phone onto your camera’s hot shoe or on a standard tripod base and shoot behind-the-scenes video while you are shooting images with your camera! Now there is no need to have a dedicated assistant to capture your BTS video roll.

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LensBall Pro

Creative Tools

The original LensBall Pro is the ultimate tool for capturing magical crystal ball reflections with either your professional camera or a smartphone. Get the big one, it’s worth the extra investment!

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Photography Prism

Creative Tools

Create awesome rainbow effects both in-studio or on location with this high-quality glass prism.

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Spider Holster

Camera Accessories

Strong and reliable, the Spider Holster will keep your camera safe and your hands-free while setting up your shot or walking around. The quick-release clip makes it easy to secure your professional camera when not in use.

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Sandbags

Studio Essential

An essential for safety in the studio (or on location) to prevent stands from toppling over. These ship empty and you can fill with sand, gravel or other heavy material yourself.

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Sheer Curtain Panels

Studio Essential

I use these lightweight sheer panels to diffuse light. Throw them over a softbox for an extra layer of diffusion, or hang them with their built-in rod pocket from a backdrop stand to get beautiful soft light.

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Manfrotto BeFree Tripod

Studio Essential

This little tripod is lightweight, has a ball head, and is super versatile. Small enough to pack away for travel and use on location, but strong and stable.

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Lens Cleaning Kit

Camera

You might think your t-shirt is okay but it’s a much better idea to use a professional lens cleaning kit. Be sure to have this in your camera bag for when you are on location too!

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LaCie External Hard Drive

Studio Essential

Whether you are in the studio or on location, backing up your image files is essential to ensure you don’t lose those precious files by accident. The LaCie 2TB is a reliable option to keep your files safe.

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Camera Huggers

Studio Essential

These cute little friends attach to your camera lens and are fabulous when working with young children. They immediately lighten the mood, make kids feel comfortable and help to focus their attention to look at the camera instead of distractions.

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Gaff Tape

Studio Essential

This is that super durable and sticky tape that the professionals use. It works great but won’t leave a sticky residue when you remove it from most surfaces. I use the 2″ tape in both black and white for making v-flats.

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Spring Clamps

Studio Essential

Secure your background to a stand. Create a better fit for clothing or clamp together some fabric to create a dress. Attach accessories to a light stand. Spring clamps are something you never expect to need but are grateful to have around in a variety of sizes.

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Camera Bag

Camera Accessories

I love this camera bag because it has built-in padded dividers and many compartments to keep your gear safe and organized. It doesn’t really look like a camera bag so it is not only stylish but less visible to potential theft when you set it down on location. I’ve used it as a carry-on when travelling as well.

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Other Good Things

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Conair Steamer

Studio Essential

Steam all the things! Wardrobe, fabric throws, canvas backgrounds. Do your clients sometimes show up with wrinkled clothing? It’s so much easier to give the clothing a quick steam rather than try to remove wrinkles during editing!

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Canopy Tent

On Location

I purchased this canopy tent for participating in local art and trade shows. It’s super easy to set up and I love that you can add side panels to provide extra shade and protection from the weather. It has also become handy to set up as a temporary shooting booth outdoors in which I can control light and serve clients when we are unable to shoot in the studio.

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