Camera bags and me

I don’t believe in owning just one camera bag.

I admit, I have a thing for them, but that’s not why I own quite a few. It’s because I truly believe that there’s no such a thing as an “every ocasion” camera bag.
See, some bags are small. Supposed to hold a mirrorless and an extra lens, usually. Some are quite big. You could carry a large camera and even extra clothes if you happen to spend a night away. Some have a rain cover, but the majority doesn’t. Some are made of beautiful canvas, and some are made of nylon or leather. It’s easy to see that there are ¬†advantages and disadvantages in all of them depending on what you need.

Light or heavy load? For each situation there’s a need, I guess. It’s as owning more than one trekking backpack: you don’t want to carry a 70-liter backpack in a single day trek. Then again, you couldn’t fit a tent and a sleeping bag in a 28-liter one.

I’m a shoulder bag guy, by the way.

Whenever I feel like strolling with my Leica M3, I pick my favorite bag, a small National Geographic Earth Explorer NG 2300 shoulder bag. It has a little removable insert that can hold two extra lenses or a small camera and an extra lens. It’s great for a book or notepad if I decide to stop for a cup of tea somewhere.

If the weather isn’t looking so nice, I like to take out my Lowepro Streamline 250. It seems to handle a light rain better than the NG 2300 since it’s not canvas. I’ve also used it on short treks, but I don’t know if I’d recommend a shoulder bag for that for anyone else.

If a heavy rain is coming, I have another Lowepro, a Pro Messenger 160 AW. It’s heavier and larger, but it has a rain cover. I rarely use it, but it’s probably my toughest bag.

Whenever I think of spending the night out, there’s my biggest bag, another National Geographic model, the Explorer NG 2478. It’s huge, but comfortable to carry, and has two removable independent inserts. I can carry two or even three cameras in it, some clothes, a book and a notebook or tablet. Also, it’s pretty useful to carry loads of equipment to a class or studio.

Finally, I have to talk about the Domke F2. I bought one used a few months ago. It’s a bit on the big size, so I can’t say that I’ve used it very much, but, in the very first time I did, I understood immediately why it is so emblematic.

I couldn’t part with any of them, really. Maybe if I only had one camera I would end up having only one camera bag, but, as a photographer and camera collector, I keep using them all.


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