Backlight 18L Espen Helland
Espen Helland Wildlife Photography Gear


Gear for Wildlife Photography and Vlogging

Here you can find all the gear I use and recommend for wildlife photography and gear I use for my YouTube vlog.

Some of the links below are affiliate links, which means I get a small commission for any purchase you make at no extra cost to you.

I buy a lot of my gear used from WexPhoto in the UK so I’ve added links to this as well as for Amazon.  Might be best to check both for the best price.

Camera setup

My Photography Gear

I used to shoot with the Canon 7Dii  (WexPhoto | Amazon) using the 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 (WexPhoto | Amazon) as my main lens for wildlife photography.  I still recommend this setup for anyone getting started and I’ve taken some of my favourite images to date with my Canon gear.

My main reason for making the switch to Olympus was weight and cost.  My next Canon lens would probably have been a 500mm fast prime which would probably set me back £3500 (used) and the extra weight would be substantial.

I use my gear for wildlife photography whilst vlogging and I often go on long hikes in the mountains. So, therefore, the lightweight Olympus system with a friendlier price tag for a fast telephoto prime lens made me switch to Olympus Micro 4/3.

Camera Body

Olympus O-MD E-M1X – WexPhoto | Amazon

Olympus O-MD E-M1 Mark II – WexPhoto | Amazon



M.Zuiko 300mm f/4 Pro – WexPhoto | Amazon

M.Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8 Pro – WexPhoto | Amazon



Wildlife Photographer Espen Helland

Vlog setup

My Vlogging Gear

For my vlogs I used the Canon M50 (WexPhoto | Amazon) with the Canon EF-M f/3.5-6.3 IS (WexPhoto | Amazon) which is lightweight, has a flip-out screen, microphone input and it can also film in 4K if I want, an ideal vlogging camera.  When I first started out I just used my iPhone which is perfectly adequate, just make sure you get a microphone for good audio!

However, now I switched to using my Olympus EM1ii for vlogging so that I can also use it as a backup camera for wildlife photography.

The Røde VideoMicro is my go-to mic, but I have a lavier backup in case it’s really windy and I have a handy RØDE Microphones NT-USB Mini for my desktop that I regularly use for videos on my Patreon site and some of the post-processing videos on my YouTube Channel.

I’ve broken a few small wrap-around tripods, and now I’ve finally settled on the SMALLRIG Mini Tripod which is much sturdier.

Post Processing

Post-processing software 

Mainly I use Lightroom and Photoshop to process my images, but recently I’ve come across Topaz and I’ve started to use more of their programs with some incredible results.

I use Final Cut Pro to edit my vlogs for YouTube Channel and videos on my Patreon site.


Image Processing

Video Processing


Other handy accessories

An absolute must for bird photographers is a decent pair of binoculars, my Viking 8×42 has lasted me over 6 years now and still going. A trail camera can be really useful to gather more information on animal activity. E.g. staking out a badger sett or a well-used mammal path to inform my photography.


Trail Camera

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Lens cover

Waterproof Camo lens cover

Espen Helland Wildlife Photography Gear


Camera backpacks

It’s difficult to find one camera bag that’s suitable for all occasions.  My Backlight 18L is my day to day bag, it’s small and lightweight, but I can get all my camera gear, vlogging gear, the Mavic drone, and some snacks for a day out.

For longer sessions and when I want to bring a hide, the slider, or other bulky items, I go with the Backlight 45L Elite.  If I’m going camping and need lots of gear I take an insert and use my large Osprey Kestrel 68 backpack.

Small Camera Backpack

Large Camera Backpack

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Camping Backpack

Backlight 18L Espen Helland


Clothes for wildlife photography

Clothing for wildlife photography should ideally be clothes that will keep you comfortable and be of earthy colours so as not to stand out in the environment. Brands I wear regularly and recommend are Fjallraven, Arcteryx, and Paramo.

During winter I wear 5 mm thick neoprene Muckboots to keep my feet warm.  For my hands, I use Vallerret Photography Gloves



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Warm Wellies

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Winter Trousers

Espen Helland Wildlife Photographer


Hides/Blinds for wildlife photography

All my hides and camo gear are from Tragopan who specialise in gear for wildlife photographers.


Hides / Blinds

Tragopan Hide

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