How to safely turn any bag into a camera bag with only three accessories

Jan 16, 2017

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

How to safely turn any bag into a camera bag with only three accessories

Jan 16, 2017

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

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Do you use several bags to pack camera gear for different occasions? Sometimes you need the gear for a professional photo shoot. On other occasions, you only need the basics because just want to have the camera around in case you run into something interesting. Different occasions require different gear, yet this gear requires different bag. In this video, Caleb Pike will give you some for turning any bag into a camera bag.

YouTube video

The secret lies in choosing the right accessories for the bags. Caleb uses three main pieces to protect his gear: Domke Wrap, Porta Brace Lens Cups and Porta Brace Stuff Sacks.

Domke wrap

Domke Wrap looks like a pretty versatile wrap. It’s covered in felt on one side, and nylon on the other, and you can use it to protect anything that needs to be protected. Caleb uses it to wrap the camera and put it in the bag. If you need the instant access to the camera, you can leave the upper side open.

Porta Brace Lens Cups

As you can guess from the name, you can use these to pack the lenses. These cylinder-shaped little bags designed to protect them. They come in different sizes and have a clear flap with a zipper on the top. Caleb suggests adding a piece of gaffer tape on the top and writing which lens is inside, for even better organization. He doesn’t use them only for the lenses, but also for NP-F batteries, audio transmitters/receivers, cables and more.

Porta Brace Stuff Sacks

These are ideal for any random gear you may carry with you: batteries, filters, cables and anything that just gets kicked around your bag. They also come in various sizes, and if they are too pricey for you, I believe you can use pretty much any felt pouch.

With your gear packed into these pouches and wraps, you can have everything protected and neatly organized in any messenger bag or backpack. In addition to these three accessories, I would also add a lens filter case, to have all the filters protected and in the same place.

I find Caleb’s solution pretty interesting and useful for traveling with the gear, or for the cases when you just want to have it around while you’re out. In my case, I like to match a bag/backpack with the rest of the outfit, yet I like to have my camera with me whenever I can. So I always carry a separate camera bag and feel trapped with all the bag straps, plus the camera strap around my neck. Not to mention that I often have no idea where I put what. So, I find this system pretty convenient, and I’ll try it out the next time when I want to bring style and camera together.

How do you like these suggestions? Will you try them out? Would you add anything else? Share your thoughts in the comments.

[How to Turn Any Bag Into A Camera Bag via Life Hacker]

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Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

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6 responses to “How to safely turn any bag into a camera bag with only three accessories”

  1. Patrick Mayon Avatar
    Patrick Mayon

    I don’t like camera bags and I have been using something similar for years.

  2. Aštar Šeran Avatar
    Aštar Šeran

    I use similar system for several years. Porta Brace lens cups looks good, but I will stick to my Fly Leaf FY pouches. They are sold for ridiculously low price, it have convenient velcro mount instead of simple loop, and it have pouched top so it offers more protection.

  3. Amani Hamed Avatar
    Amani Hamed

    Very simple idea ? I like. ??

  4. Arthur_P_Dent Avatar
    Arthur_P_Dent

    If you’re looking for something that’s truly DIY, the Frugal Filmmaker has a suggestion on protecting lenses: http://filmflap.blogspot.com/search?q=koozies
    http://filmflap.blogspot.com/2012/11/tip-stealth-camera-bag-for-6.html

  5. pincherio Avatar
    pincherio

    I have a wrap and some cups. I rarely use them. I prefer using an insert, which uses up just as much space and is much more economical in cost while also being easier to access. Just reach in, lift the lid of the insert (or fold it away so you can skip that step), and pull out what you need. The downside is flexibility. It’s pretty much a standard rectangle separated by dividers. I can’t rearrange stuff if I needed to the way Pike can with his. Much easier to use with messenger bags than backpacks but it has a zippered top with a handle so I can stick all my stuff in it and pull it out easily if I need to. In lieu of the stuff sacks, I just use Ziploc bags and stick them wherever. If they need padding, I have a lot of extra dividers lying around.

  6. Sandra Rossouw Avatar
    Sandra Rossouw

    You talk to long, rather just get to the point