BrickHouse Photo School

Tips, Tricks and Reviews for Photo Hobbyists

Domke: The Camera Bag You Should Own

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There are a multitude of camera bags to choose from and it seems that most people just grab the first one they see on the shelf or they buy the bag that matches their camera. (“Hey, I bought a Nikon and look, there’s a Nikon bag!)
That’s too bad, too. Camera bags protect the hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars you spent on your camera, lenses, flashes and other gear. It just stands to reason that you want a bag that can withstand a little wear-and-tear.

One of the best-made camera bag systems – yes they are “systems” – comes straight out of the photojournalism trenches. It’s a Domke bag and these bags are worth every penny they cost.
The bags aren’t cheap. If you want one, expect to spend about $150 US. But if you get one, you’ll probably have it for life.

My Domke bag has been through a rough life and even though it doesn’t look the best, it’s still a durable as the day I bought it.

The bags were created by Jim Domke, a photojournalist and editor for the Philadelphia Inquirer. In the 1970s, the Inquirer changed the way it allocated work cars. Before, each photographer had his own private work car so the trunk became the camera case. Then, the Inquirer decided to go to a car pool, meaning the photographers had to switch their gear from car to car.
The problem was, there were no portable camera bags available. Camera storage was mostly large metal boxes that were no where near portable.
So Domke, with the go-ahead from the Inquirer, started designing camera bags that would fit the bill for photojournalists. Thus, the Domke bag was born.

Domke bags are made of canvas. Durability has never been a factor – these bags can withstand the day-in-day-out life of a photojournalist so I have no doubt they can withstand the abuse from a student photographer or a photo hobbyist.

Find your nearest Domke retailer and give one a look. Even better, buy it. You’ll be glad you did.

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Written by jeremyparce

February 23, 2009 at 12:04 pm

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