Try It: Carry That Big Camera Everywhere

This week’s Try It is an answer to a question from Marcin:

How exactly do you manage to have a 1kg huge DSLR with you while out and about with the kids? I find it impractical with my little one, not to mention 2 of them at the same time Do you use some smart strap/bag or just don’t care if you bang it by accident? Any advice on that would be welcome by other parents too.

I wasn’t always in the habit of carrying my camera. It used to be a big deal to carry my camera out and about with my kids.

When my son was a baby, I had a small point and shoot that I carried instead of my DSLR. It was easy to carry but I couldn’t get the same kind of quality in the photos that I got with my “big camera.”

My camera carrying habits changed when I decided to join my brother in a 365 Project on Flickr. (Posting a photo from every day of a year.) It didn’t take long to realize that in order to keep daily photographs interesting, I was going to have to take my camera out of the house!

At the start of my year of photos, I carried my camera when we were going somewhere I thought would be interesting like the museum or zoo. After a few months, I started carrying it on walks in the park more often. Halfway through the year, I began taking my camera with me to the library, grocery store, hair salon… wherever I went. (Yes. I did get teased by friends and neighbors about having a camera in hand at all times.)

I didn’t get great photos every time I brought my camera. I did get practice taking photos in many different situations. I also got over self consciousness about taking pictures in places that people didn’t expect a person to be taking pictures – like the grocery store.

Here is my answer to your question Marcin:

I do not have a smart strap or bag. (I’m open to suggestions!)

I do care if I bang my camera or lenses but not as much as I used to.

If it looks like rain, I make sure to have a waterproof bag with me.

I asked Savanna to take some photos of me with my camera this morning on our walk to school this morning.

In the above photo I am using my 100 mm lens with a big lens hood. The hood is good, cheap protection for the front of the lens.

I usually have my 50mm lens on my camera which is much smaller. This morning, my darling assistant wanted to use the 50. (I love that she has an opinion!)

As you can see, it can be awkward at times. Bending down and keeping the camera from falling down is tricky.

It is impractical to carry a big camera with you all the time.

And, it is the best thing I did to improve my photography.

Because I go to the trouble having my camera with me, I’m more likely to take photos.

Taking more photos = better photos. It’s that simple.

Beautiful morning light. My boy doing what he loves in his favorite shirt. A reminder of an ordinary day’s gifts.

This week Try It. Take your camera with you even though you don’t imagine anything will be worth photographing. Carry it even though it’s not convenient.

Show me what you get. Send your photos to jenny@

3 thoughts to “Try It: Carry That Big Camera Everywhere”

  1. I'm taking mine with me on my (almost) daily walks with our dog; also, when I'm out and about with my family. It can be cumbersome, but nothing beats the feeling of getting a shot that you're are really proud of as well as something that will remind you of all the fun you had as a family. Wonderful photos, Jennifer!

  2. Thanks for you comment, Katie. You get fantastic shots on those walks. So much beauty!

    You just get used to it – right? You know it's worth it and deal with the inconvenience.

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