I, like many of my photographer brethren and sisteren, am a bag horse. I have always been a sucker for a new camera bag, always on the lookout for the perfect way to carry my camera and gear. I’ve had holster bags, shoulder bags of all sizes, watertight cases, backpacks even inserts for briefcases. But while I have searched high and low for the ideal bag, I keep coming back to one I purchased about five years on closeout – the Tamrac Velocity 3 messenger bag.
The Velocity 3 (5743) is a vertical bag with a shoulder strap, top handle and the usual padded-nylon-and-velcro inserts. It has zippered pockets on the top flap and on the back, along with a panel that lets me attach it to my rollaround suitcase. Under the flap is an open pocket and a zippered compartment with open pockets and a zippered mesh pocket. It’s a compact bag that I carry with me pretty much every day and holds just about everything I could need for a photo shoot.
After several years with the bag, I’ve settled on a configuration that lets me conveniently carry more
than seems possible (almost bag-of-holding abilities!) In this little bag I carry a Nikon D7000 with 18-105 f3.5-5.6 zoom, a 70-300 f4-5.6 VR zoom, a 50mm f1.8D prime, a 35mm f1.8 AF-S prime, SB-600 Speedlight with Stofen diffuser, spare EN-EL15 battery and MH-25 charger, extra AA’s, a full filter set, light modifiers, flash stand, wireless remote, spare SD cards, card reader, USB cable, pen and notepad and an iPod Touch.
The amazing thing is that I purchased this bag from Adorama (actually I bought two) for less than $25. It has accompanied me to work every day, on many work trips, vacations, family events, outings in the woods…just about everwhere. The strap is long enough to let me sling it across my chest. The top flap secures with both Velcro and a plastic clip. When open, I can get to everything inside while keeping the gear in its place.
If you get an opportunity to try a bag like this, I highly recommend it. It’s convenient, well-made, durable, comfortable to carry, easy to access and unassuming (it doesn’t scream “camera bag…”).