Always at the ready? It lets me grab the camera so no shot gets away. Hmmmm!

I shall not deny it.  I love camera straps.  I love camera bags.  I am going to stop short of calling it a fetish and will put it in the category “GAS” translated is gear acquisition syndrome.

I know you have heard what that is so let me get right to the point.  This is not what that is about.  The fact that I am writing this article is testimony to the fact that I and so many others own way to many of straps and bags.

There are all kinds of neck straps and wrist straps and all of them do exactly the same thing in the same way sort of.  Some adjust faster than others and some are leather or nylon or both and so on and so forth.

What has struck me as interesting lately is that strap manufacturers don’t want you to put your camera in the camera bags you have acquired.  They are steering so many of us towards a mild form of brain washing and that brain washing is trying to get us to believe that we will never be ready for the next prize winning image that will change the future of man forever.  I have to admit I have enough choices of camera straps sitting in my office to supply 50 people right now, today, with a strap for their camera.  And yet here is what I have learned besides the fact that like a camera bag, there is not a perfect camera strap.  One might feel better, adjust faster and more smoothly, look better, smell better, wrap around your wrist better if  you do that sort of thing, but ultimately they keep your camera either around your neck, on your wrist, or across your chest.

So backing up a few lines about the strap manufacturers, they want you to have that strap supporting your camera all the time, every where, every day, in every way.  Do not put your camera back in your camera bag unless you are packing up for the DAY.  Keep it around your neck or across your chest while you are eating.  Don’t put it down because you may spill your drink over it or drip mustard or ice cream on it. Ughhhh!

When you have to go to the men’s room or ladies room you have to make sure that camera and lens are right around you neck or across your chest.   Otherwise………and you can fill in letters for dots.

But it is not just the strap folks pushing this BS, I read articles that semi and full time pros do for these companies because they probably got the strap for free and they swear that their cameras are always at the ready.  Now we are not only talking about BS but stupidity.

If you are standing or sitting to have something to eat or drink or if you are standing or sitting in a bathroom stall, would you not want the protection of a camera bag of some form in order to protect the thousands of dollars of gear that you are about to shoot with.  I mean digital cameras and good lenses are not cheap.  Why treat them like they are part of a dinner setting at the table?

Now I do know that there are some of us, even myself at times that will use a Spider belt system or Peak Design belt system and no straps except a safe wrist strap to work with the camera and lens and those devices do allow me to sit at table and eat without removing the camera and the camera is pretty safe.  In the other places I mentioned I shall leave that up to your imaginations.  These types of devices actually go right on your pants belt.  I rest my case.

Have a place to store your camera.  It is a safe zone which means you do not have to worry about something wrong taking place that will damage your unprotected gear.  Be smart.

Author: ELLIOT STERN

68 YEARS IN PHOTOGRAPHY - HAVE ALWAYS LOVED IT AND ALWAYS WILL.

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