We make functional things stylish. Responsibly. This is the mantra of POMPIDOO Camera Bags and as soon as I read those words, I knew it was something I wanted to be a part of. Combine that with Italian leather, European based design and production and fair labour practices and this is one camera bag manufacturer that’s doing it right.I began photography in high school and then continued on to study a Bachelor’s degree in Photomedia and Graphic Design. About half way through my university degree I began shooting seriously, taking on clients and growing my freelance career as a photographer. This was 2009. It’s now 2016 and I have only just discovered a camera bag that I’m happy to carry around daily, that fits with almost every outfit I choose, and yet still does the job of carrying all my camera gear safely and functionally. POMPIDOO have been designing and producing stylish camera bags for women (and now men) since 2010, but it wasn’t until I stumbled upon them on Instagram earlier this year that I found the answer to my years of avoiding using a real camera bag!
Hailing from the RAW collection, my Geneva bag embodies everything I look for in a handbag, and now what I know can be also found in a camera bag; structure, minimalism and functionality. I’m the first to admit I’m pretty fussy with my handbags, although I like simple, it needs to be the right kind of simple, the right size, the right shape, the right colour…I’ve now had my POMPIDOO as my daily companion for nine months whilst travelling Europe, Australia and Indonesia, and from getting soaked in the rain in Paris, to being dragged over rocks while trying to capture that perfect photo in the Cinque Terre (we got it!), it has been through a lot and has come out relatively unscathed. Although I wouldn’t recommend getting your Italian leather bag drenched in multiple downpours, unfortunately when you’re travelling these things can be unpredictable, and my Geneva has proven time and time again that it will protect my camera (it’s not once got a drop of rain on it) and then just take its time to dry out and be back to its usual self. Sure, it’s not the unscratched, perfect creature that it was back in February, but the strap isn’t showing any signs of wear and the structure of the bag is just as sturdy as it was when I first laid eyes on it.In anticipation of our long term travels a year ago we made the transition from a Canon SLR kit to a mirrorless Fujifilm kit. The Geneva bag comes with two dividers that can be moved with the velcro attachment depending on the size of your kit, and the entire interior is padded. Us girls know how important pockets are, and you’ll find an internal zip-up pocket for all those bits and pieces, and using the dividers you can customise the layout and ensure you have everything just where you want it.
It still surprises me to this day how much I manage to fit into my Geneva, between camera gear and every day essentials, it’s rare that I wish it was any larger. My daily carry looks something like this:
– Fujifilm X-T1
– Fujifilm XF56mm f1.2, XF23mm f1.4 or XF35mm f2 on the body plus another separately
– Fujifilm X100T or Fujifilm Klasse
– Spare batteries
– Charger pack
– Small essentials (tissues, business cards, money etc)
– 600ml water bottle laid across the top
The Geneva is the perfect day bag for me – at 27x23cm and surprisingly light considering its leather qualities, I can easily sling it over my shoulder every day and not notice it, the strap is wide enough that it is comfortable and the length can be adjusted to make it a cross body bag which is perfect when we’re travelling in less secure environments. I also love that it actually just looks like a handbag – there’s no way anyone would know it was holding my beloved camera kit within it, and this security is extremely important in many countries that we travel to. This camera bag is the perfect size for a mirrorless or enthusiast SLR kit.
LENSES&LOCALS is sponsored by POMPIDOO Camera Bags. As always, all opinions are our own.