Are Casual Camera Bags on the Rise Amongst Wedding Photographers?

The Retrospecitve from ThinkTank


Anyone who has kept their eye on photo blogs or attended a trade show in 2014 can tell you about all the exciting new camera and gear developments so far this year. The most prominent change has been the enhancement of wifi capabilities on triggers, cameras and flashes. We’ve also seen the usual improvements in image quality, camera speed, and photo editing software, but what about camera bags?

To accompany all the new gear on the market, camera bag companies have adapted and made a few changes of their own. While it’s not surprising to see even more bags in the 2014 lineup with space for laptops, tablets, and tech gadgets than 2013, the most interesting development has nothing to do with the bag’s utility at all. The popularity of a few select styles is what we find most striking. Casual shoulder and other light-weight bags have taken a noticeable leap popularity. At last week’s WPPI conference in Las Vegas, a conference dominated by wedding photographers, ThinkTank co-founder and Pulitzer Prize winning photographer Deanne Fitzmaurice was caught a bit off-guard with by the number of people who gravitated to the company’s Retrospective Bag. Although fully-equipped to handle and care for camera gear, the shoulder bag resembles an urban messenger bag used to carry a laptop and a sack lunch. “You’d think wedding photographers would want a more professional-looking bag; the Retrospective is casual, has style and doesn’t look like a traditional camera bag” says Deanne. The popularity of this particular bag is enough to prompt questions about the trends we are seeing with the appearance of a new wave of wedding photographers. Is causal more desirable than professional in today’s market?

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Deanne sports a retroactive bag

According to Deanne, the majority of photographers looking for something a bit larger have continued to ask for roller bags and bags with security locking features, a stat that hasn’t changed since ThinkTank joined the conference in 2006. “Wedding photographers are still looking for bags that can get through airport security, fit in the over-head bins and lock so you can have peace of mind,” says Deanne. Similar to most suitcases, roller bags have a more professional look and feel.

Have you bought a new bag lately? If so, tell us which one and why by commenting on this post!


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Topher Kelly is a San Francisco-based freelance writer and editor at CreativeLive. Follow Topher on Twitter@Topher_LIVE.