Have you ever witnessed that affinity the seasoned photographer has with all of their equipment, whether it’s one or more of the cameras they use or indeed if it’s how they just manage to effortlessly slip the camera out of what seemed like a concealed compartment in their camera bag? That affinity comes with experience and while the novel photographer may be happy to sport their camera around their neck, at some point in time it’ll become apparent that a camera bag is essential.
How do you go about choosing the right camera bag though?
It perhaps all comes down to functionality, but that feature can be further broken down into some other factors to consider as they all come together to contribute to the functionality of the camera bag – how it functions. Size, type and special features should be considered as part of how the bag functions, particularly for those specialised cameras a photographer who is serious about their craft would possess, along with all the complementary equipment to go with the main camera piece.
The size of your camera bag is important to the extent that you have to fit everything in, but photographers tend to fall into the trap of wanting to fit every single piece of their equipment into a bag that’s just sitting there and effectively storing the equipment. It should fit everything you need for your deployments, so it shouldn’t be too big.
Generally there are two types of camera bags you can choose from, namely the backpack type and the shoulder bag. The shoulder bag comes to mind as the one I was referring to when speaking about that natural affinity photographers have with their equipment as it allows quick and easy access to the equipment. So you’d go for this one if you perhaps wanted quick access to your equipment, such as perhaps if you were a photo-journalist or similar type of photographer.
Backpack camera bags are more comfortable for use over longer periods of time, but they do slow down the process of accessing equipment, even if only for little bit.
As far as it goes with the special features, the type of camera bag comes into focus again, with sling bags like the Lowepro Slingshot Edge 150 AW and Lowepro StreamLine Sling Bag. These make for a hybrid of sorts, bringing together the appearances of a backpack type camera bag and a shoulder bag.
Going beyond the simpler camera bags, feature-wise what could make any such bag special is one of any specialised modifications built into it, such as loops or clips that are purpose-made to hold a tripod as tripod attachments. The specific bag you want could perhaps even have a compartment that’s split into smaller spaces shaped and positioned to hold and secure specific equipment like specialised lenses.
You might perhaps even want to have side access to your camera, which is a specialised feature that would be associated with a shoulder camera bag or sling bag. Either way, specialised features are what make any camera bag ‘yours’ as a photographer.