Friday, September 2, 2011

How Many Ways Can You Carry Your Camera?

Which do you own more of - camera gear or bags/straps/vests to carry it in/with?
If you're like most photographers, you'll quickly find out that there are MANY different situations in which you are transporting your gear and no one solution works for all of them.  For example, I currently own 3 different bags and use them all.

  1. Tenba Large Messenger Bag - Used daily to transport my laptop and camera back and forth to the office.
  2. Lowpro Fastback 350 - When I need to take everything and the kitchen sink, this is the bag.  My laptop, external hard drives, multiple camera bodies, all of the lenses I own (which aren't many), filters, cleaning supplies.... you get the idea.
  3. Lowpro Fastback 100 - When I need to transport some gear, maybe an extra lens or two, chargers, etc., but not the computer, kitchen sink, etc., this is the bag.
But what about when you're out driving or walking around?  Then my camera hangs at the end of my beloved BlackRapid RS-5.  It's incredibly comfortable and puts my camera safely at my side and within easy reach for rapid fire. Except it doesn't work when I'm sitting in the kayak!  Here we go again #@$!

I've rigged a cheap but effective storage solution for the camera to rest inside the hull of the kayak when the conditions get challenging.  When I have the camera out for use, however, I'm holding it in hand.  As I've previously blogged, the Hobie Outbacks are GREAT for photographers because they generally leave you with at least one free hand to maneuver the camera.  There are occasions where you find you need both hands, however -  too shallow to peddle so break out the paddle, etc.  In those times, I need to open the hatch, store the camera, close the hatch, do my thing, sponge off any water that may have landed on the hatch door, open the hatch, grab the camera, close the hatch... blah, blah, blah.  The BlackRapid strap is of no help because I'm sitting down.  What to do?

Cotton Carrier 100 CCS - 2256 Camera Vest SystemBuy another contraption of course.  This time it's the Cotton Carrier camera vest.  The vest seems like a good option because I can adjust it large enough to actually fit over my life vest and simply drop the camera into the holder on the vest when I need the use of both hands or just need a rest.  At present, I have the vest and am still adjusting the straps and waiting for an opportunity to hit the water and give it a try.  More to come.


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