Camera Bag

There is a lack of posts about bags, so I thought I would give it a try. This is a student project I just completed. It is a camera bag for the amateur action sports photographer. It is designed to be semetrical so that it can be worn over either shoulder. It features only one zipper that is located up against the persons back while being worn. This helps prevent theft while on your back, and also makes it easy to access your camera because it can only be in one place. I used neoprene, ripstop, and a rubberized non slip fabric for the bottom. Neoprene was used as a new and interesting fabric for this application because it has a different look and feel and can hold up against abuse. There are also straps that let you carry your monopod. I would really like some good critical feedback as well as what you like.

overall look OK, but hard to really judge with the images you’ve posted… the inside organization I would think are perhaps the most important aspect and you haven’t touched on it (or shown it). Also, not sure about the single zipper. I would think many more pockets would be helpful if you need to store and quickly access things like extra batteries, a flash, other lenses, etc. Also, being on the back, would kinda be a pain to access. You’d need to put the bag down to get into it, not something I associate with action sports where you never know where you’ll be or if you’ll have hands free…

can you post some more of your process? research? sketches? additional tech packs?


Thanks for the feedback! Here is some of my sketches. To help clarify, because it is a messanger style bag, you can sinch it up tight for mobility, and then quickly release it and bring it around front. The third picture I posted should illustrate this. I also found that it is very important for the bag to stand up on its own when you take it off.

Cool bag!

I thinks its a cool concept… did you actually make it? If not, that is cool. How does it perform?

My feedback;

  1. PROTECTION!!! You may have a really innovative protection system or not. How would I know? This is an ACTION SPORT CAMERA bag… surely, you included BOMB PROOF protection, no?

  2. Other than “rubberized bottom” (whatever that means) you don’t share anything about material in your picture dealio. A technical bag like this needs to have listed material type(s) at the very least, I would think. A paragraph explaining the “why you choose material x” would be even better somewhere in the picture dealio. Hint: Look at the big Camera bag manufactures… (“emulating” is not “copying”!!!)

  3. I know its hard to get solid data regarding bags and softgoods in general. There is a reason why you see BALLISTIC woven nylon on the bottom of bags and other woven materials as the shell. There is a reason why you don’t see a lot of Lycra laminated Neoprene used as the shell of most bags. I’m not going to say it isn’t cool. Because, quite frankly, using neoprene is DAMN cool and good on you for thinking outside the box.

I will say that you should take a swatch of neoprene outside and rub it up and down a concrete sidewalk 10 or 15 times, not pretty. Overall, the neoprene material will hold up fine… but you’ll see a lot of nasty pilling of the lycra laminate in short order. If you have access to a TABER Rotary Platform Abraser machine you should run the lycra side of the Neoprene “head to head” with Denim. My bet is on Denim by a long shot. Don’t bother putting lycra laminate neoprene up against Cordura or anything made of Kevlar. U-G-L-Y. :smiley:

  1. I made a range bag awhile back and it was a single zipper. It was made to a customers specs and he adamantly wanted a single zipper against my advice. He was in a big hurry so I could only take these crappy pics, but he was very happy. What works for some may not work for others.

Great feedback thanks. I really need to include more of the details in the presantation. As far as protection I went with the standard padding, however I opted away from a hard case style of bag because mobility and weight reduction was very important. This is for the amateur photographer who is going all around town, so they don’t want a lot of weight on their back, and the current alternative is them just carring their camera around in their hand

I think you are very right with this comment, that is why I only used in on the front of the bag. The bottom is non slip rubberized material, and the sides are ripstop nylon.

Great feedback so far! Thanks guys.
I really need to go back and make my presentation boards more clear and informative.

Hey there,

Great softgoods project, camera bags are especially difficult. It is quite difficult entering this type of design and construction with no formal training, and you did really well.

One super quick comment. I’m assuming this is for a school project… your professor would certainly want to know the exact materials you chose, and why you chose them over another type.

What exactly is the rubberized material? PVC? PU? PVC has been getting very seriously criticized for its ecological impact within the softgoods world, so watch out.
The nylon ripstop. Why did you opt for the ripstop? Appearance, strength, or cost? What denier is the material? Big difference between 1000D non-ripstop nylon and 420D ripstop nylon.
How thick and what type of padding did you use? (use metric numbers when you’re presenting if you want an A)

Good work, keep it coming.

Great tips! Thanks. I will be going back and updating this. Before I just presented it verbaly, but there is no representation of this in the pictures. This helps a lot, Thanks.

This is definitely a hard one to tackle, something that I’ve been trying to solve but have no real good solution.

First of all, what exactly do you mean by “amateur sports photographer”? Can you describe who this person may be and what’s your insight on this target group?

I have two camera bodies and 4 lens. I spend many hours walking in the urban or outdoor scenario with my gears. With the new gears that I acquired, I realized that my shoulder camera bag isn’t going to cut it because of weight. I bought a backpack with side access and laptop compartment, but realized that it is still far from being perfect because of new behavior and storage issues. I have to make my own internal module for my own needs. So in my experience, it’s not just about a photographer being able to grab his camera quickly to shoot. In fact, I have the camera on my hands most of the time. It’s about the ability to swap lens yet have a secured protection for the gears, and allow highly versatile customization according to personal needs. I was at a photo meet up recently at the Everglades. Same kind of subjects, but every photographer has their own unique set up.

I am actually less interested to see sketches but much more interested to see mock ups that are used to test with real weight and behaviors, as well as how your concepts evolved as you test them out. I definitely look forward to see more details of this project.

It is tough to takle. From research everyone has so many needs it is very hard to nail down. “Amateur action sports photographer” refers to the person who always was a skateboarder, or any other sport, and was not quite as good as their freinds so they took up photography to stay in the game. This person does not have a lot of equipment, maybe one extra lense, fisheye perhaps, and some extra batteries and memory cards. Other than that just extras like water and maybe a sandwich. I’m going to experiment with the interior of the bag in the comming months while I’m on break from school. great input!

Did you make that prototype yourself? Very impressive if so!

“Amateur action sports photographer” refers to the person who always was a skateboarder, or any other sport, and was not quite as good as their freinds so they took up photography to stay in the game. This person does not have a lot of equipment, maybe one extra lense, fisheye perhaps, and some extra batteries and memory cards.

Does this by chance, happen to be someone very similar to you? I definitely designed many products around my own lifestyle when I was in design school, but it is essential to explore/design outside of your own viewpoint.

Yes I did do the patern making and sewing for the prototype. It was very hard to get right.

Ha ha. No, For this project I just narrowed it down as specificly I could, because of the fact that durring my research everyone had a different opinion of what they wanted. Picking this demographic helped me design the form, as well as what was going to be carried in the bag. (I do consider myself an amateur photographer, however I enjoy street photography/ fine art.)

Nice! It sounds so specific that it could actually be a real person, which is exactly the point. Good work.

I remember so many crits where the student would start out by describing themselves (or how they wanted to see themselves) exactly to every last detail.