CEG Photographer Daniel Curtean - What's in my bag!
Leica das wesentliche
At CEG, the quality standard is the leading standard by which we judge our tools. We all spend ridiculous amounts on equipment purchases, and I believe it's one of the reasons we are unique. We invest in the best, because we want to deliver the best!
Although I have a great bond and a sincere connection to the tools which I have picked over the course of my career, the fact of the matter is that none of these matter in themselves.
When combined together, these tools create a hand selected kit of paint brushes which I know intimately, I know how they respond, and know what I will get before I put them to use. I could not fully do what I do without my equipment, because it was hand selected for a purpose, for a special look and esthetic properties which I am very sensitive to, and to help me capture what my minds eyes see. And so here is what is in my bag!
Leica M10 (Silver)
This is a photographer's dream - It has literally changed my photographic life, and forced me to drastically turn my mindset around. To this camera I owe much of my "mind's eye" taste and a lot of the look that I have developed as an artist. It forced me to slow down, analyse, taught me to pre-visualize and taught me the importance of manual focus. Through this camera I learned the importance of hand picking lenses and how important that is. It is a camera that I will never part with!
Leica S (Type 007)
To say that this camera is the pinnacle of photographic image quality would be an understatement. Not only is this beast a medium format camera, which means that the sensor is absolutely gargantuan, but it is a Leica medium format camera - and that carries with it a lineage of over 100 years of perfection!
The Leica S lenses are the very best optical performers in the world - yes, they are that good. These are reference pieces that cross over from the technical realm to resemble male jewelry. They are the best. I love their rendering. And they blow my mind each and every time I ever use them! Just amazing!
Leica M Lenses
If anyone were to ask me what my favorite lenses in the world are, the answer is always going to be "Leica M". These things are pure magic! They render color like nothing I've ever seen - the color saturation and precision is unparalleled and borderline ridiculous!
Take that a step further in discussing resolution, and these have no competition - just none! Nobody comes even close to Leica M resolution, acuity, microcontrast and perceptual sharpness.
And if we want to talk about the richness of its 3D rendering, a sense of depth that literally looks three-dimentional without the glasses, only Leica does that! When we put all of these things together, and consider the other two dozen unique reasons for why Leica M lenses are in my kit, and why I spend more on one lens than some spend on their entire system, the answer is "das wisentliche". Leica does the essentials, the things that matter, better than anyone else!
Hoodman RAW Steel SD Cards - I use these exclusively because they are bullet proof, fast, and reliable. Seriously, they have a literal steel plate running through them for strength - yeah, they're that ridiculous! These cards by Hoodman are a bit more expensive than the rest, but quality costs and I am willing to invest in them. These give me the peace of mind that my photographs are safe, regardless of whether my cameras wind up in the water, rain, mud, under a truck, etc. They are professional tools for professionals!
Ona Brixton Leather - For many, many years I had been searching to find "the one" that fit my character, matched my esthetic needs, build to quality standards and met my physical needs, and Ona has done it! I've owned this bag for a while now, and it is "it". That's all I've got to say about that!
My lighting bag, to match the wonderful Ona Brixton. Although this is not an Ona product, and the fact that it is literally the most abused, thrown around and mistreated bag, it matches my Ona Brixton and is a marvelous addition to haul around all my lighting kit.
One Bowery Bag (Gray + Brown) - I had searched for a bag this ideal for years! And although there are other alternatives on the market, I never found one that really fit. I needed small, compact, high quality, well thought out, long lasting and stylish at the same time. And that is a hard cookie to crack! But One Bags have done it, repeatedly. I am in love with their bags, and one cannot appreciate them unless one possess an appreciation for quality and great design in a fully functional product - that's what this is! I will be buying more, for sure!
ProFoto B1 and B2 Strobe System - This is a godsend! An absolutely ingenious lighting system which allows for power, flexibility, nimbleness and unwavering creative possibilities. Its expensive, and its worth every penny!
Of course there are literally tends of thousands of dollars worth of equipment which are not listed here, nor with me every day in my bag. But this list provides a basic idea of what I choose to shoot with. I can get any camera I want within reason, but over the years I've been shooting I choose the kit I have because it is the only equipment that represents my ethos, how I shoot, and ultimately captures what I see, how I see it. That it!