Camera. Don't go for anything too entry-level since it won't help your
credibility and it won't stand up to prolonged pro treatment - but something
like a Canon EOS 7D or a Nikon D300s would be more than suitable without
breaking the bank.
Lenses Event photographers should look to invest in decent glass which,
traditionally, would be slightly long for portrait type event photography. The
portrait lens of old was around 80mm since its perspective flattered the subject
while allowing the photographer to keep a reasonable distance from their
subject. You are unlikely to need anything wide (tends to distort) or long (you
don't need to be miles away from your subject) so one good medium range zoom
should be sufficient.
Tripod: For people photography, very important. After all on a busy event
shoot then it is best not to be picking up and put down the camera as it
increases the risk of damage, especially if someone inadvertently stands on it.
It is also gives your subjects an instant focal point when couples and groups
are being arranged.
Lights These are crucial, and you'll need at least two for people shots,
creative lighting is not essential, just consistent. Battery powered electronic
flash's are available though it is important that fully charged back up
batteries are to hand especially if you have a busy event.
Backgrounds You can go for paper rolls, painted backgrounds or cloth.
However cloth backgrounds tend to be more durable and cost effective. A
background support system is a must, though as with your electronic flash system
it has to be fairly light weight and portable, with the added benefit of being
quick and easy to assemble.
Props While lots of props are unnecessary, posing stools or posing tubs are
essential so the subjects can be quickly placed in a relatively pleasing
Laptop computer for receiving and outputting the images, as with any
computer the higher the spec the better, as this will directly effect the speed
Dye sub printer for output and direct sales, again higher the spec the
better as again speed is of the essence at an event. Always remember to
plenty of consumable items with you, as running out half way through the event
can be frustrating and costly.