Woah, okay. I’m sat here on the train, journeying back home from West to East after my first pre-wedding reception shoot. What better time to start writing about the camera backpack sitting on my lap? It’s expensive, bloody expensive. This whole photography passion is expensive, it’s no longer a hobby. It’s something I enjoy doing on the side and doesn’t ever feel like a job.
What makes the ONA Camps backpack special? Like Apple products, I believe it has the right mix of form and function – effortlessly stylish yet capable of providing an even better service than its rivals when it comes to storing and carrying your gear. My superficial side has wants/needs and most of all has standards when it comes to style and this backpack definitely ticks off all the check boxes.
What the backpack features (taken from the site):
• Handcrafted with waxed canvas and leather
• Room for an SLR and up to 7 lenses
• Adjustable height personal items area
• Laptop compartment for up to 17″ laptop
• Slim front organizer pocket
• Padded air mesh back panel
• Thick air mesh padding on shoulder straps
• Fully padded leather base
• Dimensions: 17″L X 12″W X 6″D
Initial thoughts, what a beautiful backpack – the waxed leather exterior is immaculate. I constantly get compliments from people about it and they’re usually wow’d when I tell them it’s a camera bag. It stands out in comparison to some of the other bags available on the market from brands such as Lowepro and Billingham. The attention to detail is what won me over from the leather straps, metal buckles, thick air mesh usage and the ability to rearrange the lens compartment to whatever suits you best. You could even use this backpack as a weekend bag if need be.
Just as beautiful. It’s so well constructed, a photographer-come-blogger’s dream as it has space for your 15″ MacBook Pro and your camera gear. I’ve had several backpacks in the past few years that I’ve tried to ‘convert’ into a camera bag but always ended up with dodgy shoulder pain or broken backpack. The backpack is separated into three different compartments; top, camera area and front pouch. The top area is where your laptop will go and further your back support and you’ve also got space there for more gear – I keep my headphones, notepad and Kindle up there. The actual camera space has more than enough area for 7 lenses, your camera body and a few other smaller accessories. The front pouch isn’t that big, a little difficult to get your iPhone (if you have a case) in there and out, more suited to store your SD/CF cards. Peep the diagram below.
The cost – £275 (£330 including shipping):
Now this might be the only downfall. I came across the backpack towards the back end of last year but the price put me off so much. I swayed on the decision for months, in fact I constantly kept coming back to the website hoping to see a discount, adding it to my basket and chickening out at the very last minute. Then I booked my holiday – 3 weeks away in the west coast and I have half-dozen weddings to shoot over the next few months so just had to click ‘confirm purchase‘ a few weeks ago.
At £330, it’s certainly not the camera backpack out there but it’s the most stylish and the storage options it provides are second to none. I’m extremely satisfied with the backpack; I don’t even notice the weight of the contents even with a hefty MacBook Pro inside. I can’t wait to take it on holiday with me, that’s my hand luggage sorted with all my valuables.
I was actually interviewed for their blog recently, here’s a snippet -
ONA: How did you get into photography? Did you start because of Yin&Yang or did Y&Y start because of photography?
Niran: I received an SLR for my 21st birthday a few months before Y&Y launched. The main reason for getting one then was so I could have cool Facebook profile pictures with the ‘blurry’ effect. Little did I know that I’d end up falling in love with the art as Y&Y grew. It became the catalyst to discovering a hidden passion through Y&Y’s growth. We wanted to focus more on original content using better quality photography instead of just posting studio shots taken by PRs. So I guess that’s where it all started.
Enjoy the imagery above, I managed to step in front of the camera for a change. Still slowly trying to refine the art of narcissism, if you like what you see – head over to ONA, browse their bags and make a purchase – click here.