I have been looking, and looking, and looking for a camera bag that fits my needs as a photographer, but also as a mom on the go. I need a bag that is somewhat stylish NOT ugly canvas and utilitarian. A bag that holds the gear I use safely NOT in the external pockets where it can fall out and get banged around. I want a bag that was light weight enough that when it is loaded with my equipment it’s not too heavy to pack around. I wanted a bag that would also hold my wallet, keys, and cell phone so I don’t have to pack around extra bags.
I have tried many different styles and sizes of camera bags. I’ve had the small backpack, the shoulder bag, the large backpack (way way way too heavy), and various others. Currently, I’ve been using the Adorama Slinger, and, while I really like it, it’s just not big enough to hold all the gear I like to keep with me. It also doesn’t provide very easy access to extra lenses because of the flap you have to open. I am also not able to take any extras (wallet, lip gloss, etc.) because of it’s lack of space.
After reading many reviews online – reviews by the MWC crowd (moms with cameras) and fellow photographers, I finally settled on trying Jo Totes. I have the Missy in Black. I loved the packaging when it arrived – it has it’s own little bag inside the box. It reminds me of a VERY wide laptop bag, but it is really stylish. My favorite part of the bag initially was the fabric lining. It is ADORABLE!!! It came with four dividers that can be moved and rearranged to fits anyone’s needs. The materials it is made out of are high quality, and the little details included just make the bag even better.
It took me a while to get all the dividers organized in a way that made me happy, and even then I still have on extra, so I may be rearranging again until it is just perfect. The bag has a zipper pocket and two flapped magnetic-close pockets on the outside. On the inside there are two open-top pockets and one zipper pocket. I did not put anything in the external zipper pocket yet. In one of the magnetic pockets, I have my battery charger and extra batteries. In the other, I put my cell phone and it is also where I will put lip gloss, my keys, and anything extra I need. I couldn’t immediately find a place to put my extra CF Cards, so for now, I just used split rings and attached them to the shoulder strap ring so they can either hang on the outside of the bag or be zipped safely inside the bag. The one thing I love immediately about this bag loaded is the zipper opening. I can have it slung across my body with the zipper open and all my gear is at my fingertips, but when I want more security for my gear/wallet/phone, etc, I can just zip it up and go.
The pink case next to this lens is my P&S camera, which I also like to keep with me because of it’s video capabilities. I also like to use it for quickie shots of my girls, family, and animals, so I like to have it handy.
I plan on using this bag heavily for a few weeks and then re-reviewing it. I am interested in seeing how well it works for me.
I have high hopes and see good times in store for this bag and me.