Posts Tagged ‘Backpack’

Do You Fear What Other’s Think?

Clad in cargo pants, t-shirt and hiking boots–my camera pack securely strapped to my back, a tripod dangling from my waist–I was ready for whatever adventure lay before me! But I must say, I felt very much out of place standing there in line with the mob of vacationers waiting to disembark the cruise ship. And I suppose a jesting comment accompanied by a warm smile from a fellow passenger didn’t help much. :)

But never mind what other people think. To not do something simply for fear of what other’s think is not a good reason not to do it. I had a goal and a purpose for the way I was dressed the way I was, so why should I let fear deter me from it? This was the opportunity of a lifetime that I didn’t want to miss, and instead of wasting away the time in frivolous leisure and play, I was setting out to get some serious work done.

And once I was out on the beach, away from the crowds and immersed in creation, I was reassured of my purpose. What a pity it is that folks often don’t seem to appreciate the qualities of a good photo excursion (though, I must admit that the blisters, headaches, sore joints, “missing-out-on-all-the-fun”, starvation and a million other reasons . . . do point to a logical conclusion of why most folks do not). But what a beautiful sunset it was that evening! I suppose there may have been a few folks who saw it; the few who were in too much of a hurry to get home for dinner to appreciate it, or the few privileged millionaires staying in their luxury condos on the island who happened to look out the window at just the right moment (or be taking a jog along the beach?). But just how many folks actually experienced it? felt the wind in the face, the sand on the feet . . . and a camera at their fingertips?

1691_Canon EOS 40D, 21 mm, 1-125 sec at f - 9.0, ISO 100

I’ve been tempted more than once to forego the heavy backpack, the uncomfortable clothes, the heavy shoes, the strangling camera straps and the cumbersome accessories. But for the joy of seeing the results of my work (or is it play?) gives me enough strength me to endure the pain and learn not to make decisions based on what other people think!

Back to Backpacks

After returning from Peru, I knew the backpack I had chosen for travel, the Calumet BP935 Small Backpack, was not the one for me. It was very nice, but here were the drawbacks for me:

  • Did not fit my back very well. Even with a waist strap, it was just too big for my body, and most of the weight still hung on my shoulders.
  • Too big for my needs. If you have a lot of camera equipment, this bag will fit it all! But I needed extra compartments for storing books, laptop accessories, and other items for use on the road.
  • One major compartment. Instead of allowing access to individual items, you have to open the whole thing to get to anything.
  • Small front pockets. Pockets didn’t stretch at all, making it hard to even store batteries and camera accessories in them. They were also designed in a way that things tended to fall out when you opened them.

Tamrac 5786 Evolution 6 Photo Sling Backpack Calumet graciously allowed me to return the backpack. Now that I knew more specifically what did and did not fit my needs for travel, I was able to exchange it for another backpack: the Tamrac 5788 Evolution 8 Photo Sling Backpack. Though I have used it only slightly, here is what I have enjoyed thus far about it.

  • Slightly smaller size fits me very well. Even though the waist strap isn’t as big, the whole thing seems to fit me better. For some reason, the weight is better distributed between my hips and shoulders.
  • More room for extraneous supplies. The large top compartment, accessed separately, can be used for books and travelling items while still converting to camera space if desired.
  • Multiple access to camera. The camera can be accessed from the front as well as from both sides. This makes it very easy to get things out of the bag when traveling or hiking.
  • Quality padding. Even though I think the Calumet bag had better padding, this bag is top notch when it comes to protecting your equipment.

Well, I hope these thoughts are helpful for anyone looking to purchase a camera/laptop combination backpack. I don’t think I’ll be searching for a new bag in a long time.

Compartments revealed It looks a little flimsy, but trust me, it is not at all

The Next Great Adventure

Viva Peru! Well, things are ready now to fly out to Peru tomorrow! It has been an intense last few days leaving no time for blogging, but much was accomplished, and I am now prepared to work with a single focus on this next great expedition.

For the most part, while in Peru for the next week, I’ll only be able to consistently post on staddonfamily.com, so please frequent that for a day by day overview complete with lots of pictures.

Travel is a big part of photography. That’s why I went ahead and purchased a new camera bag today: a Calumet BP935 Small Backpack. I’m curious to see how well it works for this trip. Now, instead of lugging around two carry-ons for my camera and laptop, I can now have them combined in a very comfortable backpack. I’ll see about posting a review when I get back!