Today’s Post by Joe Farace
Beginning with the March ’15 issue of Shutterbug magazine, I’ll be writing a new column called Geared Up, which will look at different categories of photo-releated gear. That first column in on portrait lenses and I hope you’ll enjoy it. The May issue (on newsstands approx 4/10/15) will be on camera bags for travel photography. Like all of these new columns it will be a round-up of the different kinds of products available. This month, I’ll give you a teaser and offer a few non-product specific tips on selecting the right camera bag for you.
When heading our on a location shoot, you need to start packing. It doesn’t matter whether you’re slinging gear into the back of a Land Rover or a baggage handler is stuffing it inside a Airbus, you need bags and cases must protect your gear but what else do you need?
- Fast set-up. Upon arriving at the location, you should be able to easily and conveniently get to everything inside inside the case.
- Comfort. Make sure the bag is comfortable when packed. Handles and harnesses can reduce fatigue when carrying lots of gear. One of the most overlooked features is the shoulder strap. Many are designed to look good but how well do they stay on your shoulder?
- Capacity. Some photographers have a habit of overloading cases. That’s why you should check to see exactly how much weight each bag can carry.
- Organization. How many different ways can your case be configured? A photographer should be able to move dividers inside the case to customize its interior.
- Portability. The bag/backpack must be mobile. Maybe you need a rolling case?
- Details. The decision to purchase a particular bag may boil down to details. Wedding photographers need silent zipper pulls and watertight zippers are indispensable for wet locations.
- Durability. Many location photographers are hard on their cases. Tip: When flying, some photographers prefer pack their camera bags inside luggage or hard cases.
- Access. Just remember one of Farace’s Laws is that you can never be too organized for a location shoot.