Music Photography Blog

by Adam Elmakias

Gear pack for Europe, UK, Australia tour

Tour. I love tour. I also hate it. But I mostly love it, and the reasons I hate it are all trivial at this point in my life compared to the reasons I love it. But I suppose its always good to find ways to improve. This tour route is a bit tricky. We start in Europe/UK (which is cold as hell), and then we go to Australia for Soundwave Festival (which is super warm), and then I think my next tour is very cold but I don’t know for sure yet. Anyway, it’s hard to prepare for a cold tour when I don’t live in a cold state. Honestly, I don’t even own a winter coat. I couldn’t buy one in San Diego (where I live), I couldn’t buy one in Florida (where the band lives/rehearses), and now I have to wait until we land in Amsterdam and buy one at this H&M across from the hotel. Other than that, I think I am pretty prepared for this one on all technical/gear accounts.

Things I…


…love about tour



  • Hanging with my friends
  • Seeing new places
  • Experiencing other cultures
  • Meeting photographers
  • Meeting concert attendees
  • Every day I get to shoot exactly what I want, all-day
  • Making new friends
  • I don’t have to go to a store to get food


…miss while on tour



  • Organic fresh produce
  • Mexican food
  • Sal, Robert, and Tanner
  • Maintaining a relationship
  • Having a routine
  • Constant nice weather


…look forward to after being on tour



  • Hanging out in bed for a day with my cat
  • Relaxing
  • Going on vacation
  • Hanging with no work-related friends

While I go on tour, I have to bring some things with me. I wish my job was to just hang out–well, it sort of is–but I put a lot of effort into my hanging out, and a lot of gear as well. I try to always test a pack before I have to live it for several weeks. For example, I went on vacation to Hawaii before this and packed the exact same way (plus a few more clothes) to see how this pack would work on the road. However, when I am actually on tour, I don’t bring many clothes at all.

Adam Elmakias Gear Pack
Am I doing this right?
Adam Elmakias Gear Pack
Oh okay, this looks a bit better





  • Canon 5D Mark III
  • Canon 6D
  • GoPro Hero 2





  • Sigma 15mm f/2.8 Diagonal Fisheye
  • Canon 22mm f/2
  • Canon 24mm f/1.4L
  • Canon 35mm f/1.4L
  • Canon 40mm f/2.8 Pancake
  • Canon 50mm f/1.2L
  • Canon 85 f/1.8
  • Canon 17-40 f/4L
  • Canon 24-70 f/2.8L
  • Canon 70-200 f/2.8L
  • Canon EF 2.0X III Telephoto Extender
  • Canon EOS M Mount Adapter


Flash/ Lighting



  • Canon 580EX
  • PocketWizard Plus II Transceiver x 3
  • Manfrotto ML240 Mini-24 LED Panel


Camera Support



  • Holdfast Money Maker
  • Spider Monkey Clips
  • Spider Holster





  • Sensaphonic Ear Plugs
  • Passport and Notepad
  • Beats Tour
  • Izzi Orbit





  • Think Tank AA Battery Holders
  • Think Tank Canon Battery Holder
  • Spider Camera Holster





  • WesternDigital Hard Drives
  • Mac Charger
  • Plugbug l Outlet Adapter
  • Card Reader





  • Calumet 8105 5-Section 8x Carbon Fiber Monopod
  • Manfrotto 234RC Monopod Quick Release
  • ND filter
  • Manfrotto Super Clamp
  • Think Tank Red Whips


Boring but necessary



  • Canon Charger
  • Canon M Charger
  • GoPro Charger
  • 5x Batteries for iPhone

Here is a video walkthrough of it all as well, conveniently hosted from my hotel room bed. Yes, it looks just as sketchy as you think it would look filming this thing. #thingidoforvlogs

Adam Elmakias filming gear pack


Adam Elmakias Concert gear pack packed
concert setup packed
Adam Elmakias Concert gear pack setup unpacked
concert setup unpacked

My concert setup is pretty basic. I switch out my lenses sometimes, but usually, I’ll choose to shoot with either primes or zooms. Generally, I do the first few songs with one gear pack setup and the rest of the set with the other. My main goal regardless of the setup is to have two cameras ready to go at all times. The main camera is on my left hanging from my Holdfast Moneymaker. My backup is on my right attached to my waist with a Spider Holster. Basically, my main camera is the one I shoot with 90% of the time, and my backup has a different lens on it–usually 70-200, fisheye, or wide-angle–so that when something happens that I need a different look for quick, I can reach for it. In this example, I am showing you my back for my prime lenses. I keep them all in a Think Tank 10 over my shoulder. It’s pretty easy to flip around and access from the front of my chest and switch lenses on my cameras.


Adam Elmakias walk around gear pack setup
Canon 580ex, Spider Monkey Clip, Canon 6D, Spider Holster

This is my walk around setup for cities/parks/nice areas no matter where we are in the world. I say nice areas cause it’s a good setup, but it’s still a couple of thousand dollars on my waist and I am not trying to get robbed. I keep my flash attached to my belt with the Spider Monkey clip. I also bring my Think Tank Sling over my shoulder if I want a few extra lenses.


Canon EOS M with Mount Adapter and Sigma 15mm Fisheye lens
Canon EOS M with Mount Adapter and Sigma 15mm Fisheye lens

I usually just bring my Canon EOS M with a Sigma 15mm fisheye attached. This compact SLR has a APS-C Sensor (1.6 crop) so it isn’t quite fisheye wide, and I love the look. I just don’t want my gear to be big or expensive-looking if we are in a sketchy area.


Just the Canon EF-M with the 22mm f/2 STM lens
Just the Canon EF-M with the 22mm f/2 STM lens

Small and covert. We just here to wander around. Don’t mind us.


Canon EOS M with Mount Adapter and Sigma 15mm Fisheye lens, Canon 580ex
Canon EOS M with Mount Adapter and Sigma 15mm Fisheye lens, Canon 580ex

This is my setup for most parties. Whether it be on the bus or at the club, I try to keep it small and have a flash so that no matter what the lighting is like, I can get some good shots. I also don’t want the camera to be too bulky cause then it gets distracting or draws attention while we are somewhere like a restaurant.

PARTY SETUP (where I am also drinking)

Canon EOS M with Mount Adapter and Sigma 15mm Fisheye lens, Manfrotto ML240 Mini-24 LED Panel
Canon EOS M with Mount Adapter and Sigma 15mm Fisheye lens, Manfrotto ML240 Mini-24 LED Panel

I usually keep it small and unbreakable, so something like this works well. Add a light so we can shoot some video if stuff gets adventurous. I don’t usually drink when I work, but honestly sometimes being at a party and just standing there not drinking, is worse than actually participating. The goal is to blend in, not be a chaperone.


Adam Elmakias airpoort gear pack
Thank Tank Shape  Shifter Camera Backpack and Think Tank International Roller, camera varies depending

The goal for this gear pack is to always have one hand open so I can always be shooting. In some situations, I do wear the Spider Holster belt if I need the option to set my camera down quickly. I also wear a GoPro on my shoulder strap connected by a Spider Monkey clip, this way I can film while walking and still have a free hand to shoot with.


Pros of current pack



  • Versatile
  • Compact
  • Mostly weatherproof


Cons of current pack



  • Heavy
  • Lots of gear
  • Takes a while to pack
  • No extra space
  • Clothes kind of lacking

I am always modifying and changing my gear pack. I will try to do one of these as my changes become more significant, but for now- this is what I am carrying on me. So I guess if you need gear, just come find me at a venue, murder me, and take it all.