Feature Image by: Sean Scott

Unpacking Sean Scott’s Photography Kit

“Ever since I was young, I’ve always loved showing people the beauty of the world and I have found photography to be the perfect tool to do this.”

Sean Scott

Celebrated for his awe-inspiring surf, landscape and astrophotography images, Sean Scott has been traversing Australia in search of the perfect photograph for more than 20 years. But how did he get started? And what gear does he rely on to make it all happen?

Astrophotography by Sean Scott
Canon EOS 1DX Mark II and EF 11-24mm f/4L USM. ISO 10 000, f/4, 30"

Carving a Career as a Photographer

I began my photography career shooting coastal landscapes, but my desire to share my love of being in the water inspired me to invest in a waterproof housing. Soon enough I was out capturing the incredible views you get when swimming in beautiful, large waves. One thing led to another and I soon began shooting underwater wildlife as well as surfers.

Photographer using a tripod to take a seascape image

My passion for sharing what I could see only grew from there. It wasn’t long before I learnt how to print and manufacture my own frames and I started to sell my artwork at local beachside markets. This led to me eventually opening my own gallery in Burleigh Heads, which I have owned and operated for the last 15 years.


Riding the Social Media Wave


Ocean ripple by Sean Scott

“I’m constantly looking at new opportunities and learning techniques with the ever-changing landscape of camera capabilities.”

As social media took the world by storm, I found new avenues to share how I saw the world. With this new platform now available, I found myself with a lot more opportunities to travel and expand my love of photography.


From Paddling Outback to Camping in the Outback

Photography road-trips started to become a large part of my photographic journey. I have travelled around Australia four times in the last four years, falling in love with the Australian Outback in the process. My fully-customised “photography truck” allows me to live and work off-grid for as long as I need , which has really helped.

Astrophotography by Sean Scott
Canon EOS 1DX Mark II and EF 11-24mm f/4L USM. ISO 5000, f/4, 30"

Working completely alone in remote locations has inspired a lot of my most recent work and also led to the creation of my new @Australias_Outback social media account, which is dedicated to travelling and camping in this uniquely special part of the world.


The Sky’s (Not) the Limit


Astrophotography by Sean Scott
Canon EOS 1DX Mark II and EF 11-24mm f/4L USM. ISO 8000, f/4, 30"

“Astrophotography in Australia’s outback is as good as it gets.”

One particular aspect of being in the outback is the incredible night skies you see once you get away from any towns and lights. To get the most out of the excellent astrophotography conditions here you need to plan your trip around the moon cycles. It can be challenging being on your own in complete darkness but if you’re well-prepared, you can place yourself in the right place at the right time and capture some pretty spectacular images.


The Gear that Makes it All Possible


Sean Scott gear

Cameras

I have amassed an arsenal of Canon camera bodies over the years. The EOS 5D Mark IV is a great all-round camera that’s compact and easy to carry. I use this camera a lot in the water (with a housing) and also when shooting from helicopters or planes. It performs well in low-light and the larger image files are perfect for printing up in my gallery.

I also carry two EOS 1D X Mark II bodies, which I use for all low-light applications, astrophotography and in the water when I need higher frame rates. Then I have the EOS 5Ds and EOS 5DsR which, with 50.6 megapixels, are currently the highest megapixel cameras in the Canon DSLR range. I use these when the light is great and I’m shooting images destined for the gallery.

Lenses

On dry land, I rely on the EF 24mm f/1.4L II USM, EF 35mm f/1.4L II USM and EF 85mm f/1.4L IS USM for landscapes, portraits and general travel photography. I also rate the Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM for its versatility and the EF 50mm f/1.2L USM art series lens for its excellent focussing power and depth-of-field.

For wildlife and surf photography, where I need to be able to zoom in on the action from far away, I like the powerful but portableEF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM, as well as the EF 200-400mm f/4L IS USM Extender 1.4X.

For portraits, I use the EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM and make full use of the versatility offered by the EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM when shooting from helicopters and planes.

When it’s time to get in the water, whether it be shooting surfers, waves or underwater wildlife, I depend on the EF 14mm f/2.8L II USM, as well as the EF 16-35mm f/2.8L III USM and EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM.

After the sun has set completely and it’s time to shoot the night’s sky, I make the most of the ultra wide EF 11-24mm f/4L USM, which pairs perfectly with the EOS 1D X Mark II. This is my favourite astrophotography lens.

Check out our range of lenses and cameras.

All photography by Sean Scott. See more of his work here.

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