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Photography Equipment You Need to Start a Photo Business in 2023

If you’re thinking of starting a photography business in 2023, you need the right equipment to get started. Each company and niche will have different needs. But there are several basic categories that most photographers will have to consider. This professional photography supplies list includes several categories as you set up and grow your business.

The Photography Industry in 2023

Professional photography is in high demand in several industries in 2023. Businesses require professional photos for everything from product pages to social media content. Photographers also produce content for real estate agents, and special events and some even sell images or provide direct services to consumers. There is a steady demand for these services. And many photographers can even take advantage of multiple income streams at once.

Why You Should Consider a Photography Business

If you’re thinking of starting a business in 2023, here are some reasons to consider photography:

Multiple ways to make money with photography: Sell photos, offer paid sessions, or cover special events. There are tons of ways to use your skills in different niches.
Low barrier to entry: Though you can get a degree in photography, it’s not required. Consider just taking a photography business course online or at a local community college instead.
Express your creativity: Photography involves artistic expression. So it can be an ideal business for creatives.
Time and location flexibility: Many photographers set their own hours and can take jobs and edit from the locations of their choice.
Sustained demand: There’s a high demand for professional photographers in a variety of industries, from event planning to product photography.

Essential Professional Photography Equipment List

Before you can launch your new photo venture, it’s time to invest in quality materials. The exact items you need may depend on your niche. For example, product photography equipment often differs from the items used to shoot portraits. If you’re ready to kick off your photo business, here are some photography supplies to add to your list.


A quality camera is the backbone of any photo business. Some photographers use just one device with multiple accessories. And others have multiple cameras, like a DSLR and compact digital camera, to use for different occasions. Here are some types you may use:

DSLR camera
Compact digital camera
Video camera
Drone camera

Camera Hardware

Once you have the camera, you may also need some hardware to complete your setup. Here are some common types of camera hardware to consider:

External hard drive
Memory cards
Camera strap


The right tripod can stabilize your camera and make it easier to get smooth shots. There are also specialized versions for specific types of shots or videos, like 360 product photography equipment. Here are some different types to consider:

DSLR tripod
Smartphone tripod
Camera stand
360 product photography equipment

Photography Lighting

If you’re shooting indoors or in low-light conditions, you may need additional lighting equipment to supplement your shots. Here are some of the best studio lights for photography and other lighting accessories to consider:

Studio lights
External flash
Ring light

Camera Lenses

Camera lenses attach to DSLR and mirrorless cameras to provide a certain look for each shoot. Many photographers use different lenses for various types of shoots, since you want a different look for food photos than you would for landscape shots. It’s also important to ensure that each lens matches your camera. Here are some popular varieties to consider:

DSLR lenses
Mirrorless lenses
Wide angle lens
Special effects lenses


Filters change the appearance of images by slightly distorting what colors or visuals are captured. For example, some create the illusion of a light flare, while others change the color. Here are some popular types:

Polarizing filters
Color filters
UV filters
Flare filters

Photo Accessories

These smaller photo accessories may also come in handy in some niche situations:

Rain cover
Waterproof case
Composition tool


Backdrops provide a steady base for studio portrait photography or product photos. These products vary widely by size, color, and material. But here are some popular products:

White backdrop
Backdrop stand with clips
Light boxCollapsible backdrops


Photo props add interest to a variety of photos. Simple cubes are often used to enhance product photography. And silly photo booth props can

Cube photo props set
Photo booth accessories
Geometric photo props
Newborn photo props

Studio Space

Studio space can be useful for photographers that take portraits, product photos, or staged photo shoots. This isn’t really a product to purchase, but rather a service to book as needed or to rent on an ongoing basis. Check your local community for lease or on-demand rental options if you don’t have enough space in your home or office.


Many photography businesses also require reliable transportation to get to and from events or photo shoots. This can include your own personal vehicle or public transit options. However, secure transit is often preferred when carrying bulky and/or valuable photography equipment.


Even if you use a larger professional camera for most of your photos, a smartphone is essential for sharing images and marketing your business. Additionally, many modern smartphones include quality cameras that you can use for a variety of purposes. Some of the best smartphones for photography include:

Apple iPhone 14 Pro Max
Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra
Google Pixel 7 Pro
Sony Xperia 1 III

Photo Editing Software

Once you take photos, the right editing software can help you polish them. There are a variety of options at different price points and skill levels. Here are some top options:

Adobe Lightroom
Adobe Photoshop
Skylum Luminar Ai


A computer can provide storage space, editing capabilities, and options for marketing your photography business. Here are some popular options for photographers:

Apple Mac Studio
Apple Macbook Pro
Lenovo ThinkPad
Microsoft Surface Book

Photo Printer

You may also need a photo printer to provide physical copies of your work to clients or in marketing materials. The following devices provide a high level of quality:

Kodak Dock Plus Instant Photo Printer
HP Smart Tank 7602
Canon Selphy Wireless Compact Photo Printer
Canon PIXMA Pro-200

Camera Bag and Storage

Once you have all of your photography gear in place, you’ll need a camera bag or storage solution to keep everything safe. Here are some main options for getting your cameras and accessories where they need to go safely:

Camera bag
Camera backpack
Waterproof case
Bag for camera and lenses

Cleaning Supplies

It’s also important to keep your professional photography equipment clean. The following camera cleaning supplies can provide a thorough clean or help you while you’re out on shoots:

Camera cleaning kit
Sensor cleaning swabs
Lens cleaning pen brush
Screen cleaning kit

Save with Quality Used Photography Equipment

Used photography equipment can help you save money when getting your business off the ground. Certain items, like photo accessories, backdrops, and camera equipment can all be purchased new. Just look for sellers with high ratings and clear images of the products you’re purchasing.

What type of camera do most professional photographers use?

Most professional photographers use DSLR or mirrorless cameras from the brands Nikon, Canon, and Sony. Popular models in 2023 include the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV, Sony a7III, and Nikon D850.

What is a professional photographer’s most important piece of equipment?

A photographer’s most important piece of equipment is a quality camera and lens. The best products vary based on your niche. But these items should be among the first you purchase.

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Image: Envato Elements

This article, “Photography Equipment You Need to Start a Photo Business in 2023” was first published on Small Business Trends