On the outside, The Hundreds Paparazzi Backpack ($79) is an unassuming canvas backpack. That is what it is meant to be. On the inside, it is clearly meant to accommodate the needs of photographers. The backpack is divided into three main compartments: at the top back there’s a well-padded laptop compartment, at the top front there’s a large compartment with several pockets including a mesh zipper pocket, pen holders, a mini carabiner for your keys, etc. Below that on the lower front, there’s a large zip out pocket with all the customizable padding configurations necessary for photographers to store cameras, lenses, flashes and other goodies. This bag is perfect for the photo blogger out on their daily adventures, capturing the world around them.
Fun? Check. Retro? Check. Still hold your camera? Check. Acme Made’s The Bowler Camera Bag ($39.99) is designed as a day bag perfect for carrying a DSLR with an attached lens with fun styling that is reminiscent of a classic bowling ball case. The padded interior divider can be adjusted as you desire and the hidden side pockets offer storage for memory cards, cleaning cloth and other small camera accessories. Dual-zippered top-flap opening provides a quick and easy way to open and close the bag. The Bowler Camera Bag is definitely a fun alternative to the traditional camera bag, allowing you to stroll around town for the day with your camera stylishly protected.
Want a camera bag that doesn’t scream “I have a camera bag” to everyone around you? Timbuk2′s Snoop Camera Messenger Bag ($150) is an incognito camera bag with classic messenger styling on the outside, but on the inside it has a fully padded and modular insert able to house camera lenses, bodies, and accessories. In addition, an internal slash pocket against the back wall of the bag provides a slightly padded, firm place for files, e-readers, or laptops when you’re out on a shoot. If you really mean business, you can secure your tripod with the adjustable straps on the bottom of the bag. And when you’re not packing (cameras), simply remove the padded insert and rock it like a classic messenger.
Looking for a full-featured back-country ski and climbing pack that is able to carry your camera gear as well? Then try out Clik Elite’s Contrejour 35 ($339) adventure backpack. Intended for the serious outdoor photographers who hike, climb or ski their way to photo shoots. The bag’s high-tech harness system and roomy interior allow you to carry plenty of winter gear such as clothing, food, shovel, axe and probe in addition to your skis, board or tripod. For your camera gear, the bag features a padded internal “Cradle Zone” camera bay which is accessible through the back-panel, protecting contents from snow and dirt.
If you’re the type of person who is always carrying practically everything you own everywhere you go, you need a bag that can keep up with your lifestyle. Tenba’s Messenger: Small Photo/Laptop Bag ($108.95) accomplishes just that. It is able to carry your laptop and documents to the office, clothes to the gym, books to school or transport your professional camera system around the city for a day of shooting. Featuring a photo insert capable of holding a DSLR body, 2–3 lenses and a flash that can be removed when not needed to make room for the rest of your stuff. Plus, it comes in seven stylish colors.
Are you an aspiring pro snowboarder/photographer? If so, step up to the Burton Focus Pack ($175), a pack built with snowboarders in mind. With carrying features for all of your gear, ample storage capacity, and easy access compartments, you can focus on getting the shot without worrying about how to haul all of your gear. The bag includes pockets and straps for shovels, heaters, film, cords, batteries, beverage, and sound—every piece of the puzzle has its place. Especially handy for photographers, the heater pockets extend battery life, the trap door compartment expands storage space, and the load-balance waist harness lets you pack on the pounds without falling down.
For the situations when all you need is one DSLR body and one attached lens, Think Tank has completely redesigned their Digital Holsters ($50-$85). Available in five different sizes and featuring an expandable “Pop Down” section that allows them to hold lenses of two different vertical heights with the hood in position or with it reversed. A feature new to V2.0 is the built-in side attachment system compatible with most Modular, Skin, or Multimedia components. The Digital Holsters also feature a side pocket for holding memory cards, a soft flap to cover the camera’s LCD, a shoulder strap, and an externally accessible seam-sealed rain cover in every model. They fit most tripod plates while attached to the camera.
Responding to the ever-increasing popularity of HDDSLR Video camera rigs, Kata has released the Pro-Light Source-261 PL ($TBD) backpack. The clearly thought-out design allows you to carry all of your HDDSLR Video production gear and accessories. The large middle compartment fits your working HDDSLR connected to a stabilizing system, a large padded pocket on the flap provides convenient storage and the modular dividers will fit anywhere you like in the remaining space and hold accessories you need often or even an additional DSLR body. Two storage areas open up along the sides and are partitioned to comfortably organize additional lenses and accessories. In addition, there is a full length rear laptop slot which will fit most 17″ laptops.
In development with celebrated artist/photographer Ari Marcopoulos, the Incase Ari Marcopoulos Camera Bag ($199.95) was designed for both professional photographers and enthusiasts alike. Ari worked hand-in-hand with Incase designers to create a camera bag that provides fast access to cameras and equipment in an easy to carry ergonomic design. The bag is constructed of heavy-duty canvas finished with a custom water-repellent coating to provide optimal weather resistance. Ari’s use of multiple devices at each shoot inspired the quick access point-and-shoot camera pocket with magnetic closure and the iPad interior slip pocket. Each bag also comes with Now Is Forever, a limited-edition book of new and unseen photographs by the artist.
To help active photographers who need to haul their gear out to the trails and mountains for the day, F-Stop has released their lightweight Loka ($249) backpack. Constructed of ballistic rip stop nylon, high density foam, a waterproof urethane coated mesh and a mixture of heavy gauge and YKK waterproof zippers, the Loka was built to carry your photo gear and stand up to the adventurous lifestyle. The pack sits at 37L, is airline safe and allows you to switch out how much photography gear you want to bring with you by offering you the choice of multiple ICU (Internal Camera Unit) sizes, allowing you to adjust your photo gear vs. adventure gear ratio depending on the mission.