Posts tagged camera
Vinta S-Series Travel & Camera Bag

Updated 09/19/16: You can check out the full review of the Vinta S Series camera/travel bag here. I've used a lot of different camera bags to carry my Nikon D750 around, but nothing I've found is more stylish than the Vinta S-Series. Recently out of Kickstarter, and already sold out of it's initial run, the S-Series combines a camera and travel bag in a small form backpack style. Available in black, grey and forest green (my preferred color) the S-Series can hold up to a 15" laptop or MacBook Pro, a full-frame DSLR or mirrorless camera along with 3-5 lenses and comes with a removable field pack that can store an extra lens or other accessories.

vinta back
vinta back

I love how the S-Series comes with removable inserts for a camera and lenses, making it a more versatile bag than my Timbuk2 small camera bag. The convertible option quickly turns it into a stylish backpack for a weekend away. It's the small details on a bag that make it stand out and Vinta has those covered. Simple leather accents really draw the eye while still maintaining a minimalist look and feel. This bag definitely makes me want to take a hike and try my hand at some more nature photography.


Other features of the S-Series include:

  • Leather details & magnetic snaps
  • Light-weight and durable poly fabric
  • Waterproof material
  • Gun metal details

Check out a video on the Vinta story here and make sure to follow them on Instagram to keep up with their adventures and travel.

Nikon D750

Every photographer has their favorite. I have good friends that swear by their Fujifilm mirrorless setups (of which I now own this little beauty) and some that are loyal only to a single brand, which usually makes buying lenses a lot easier. For me, as soon as I picked up the Nikon D750, I was at home. The body fit perfectly into my hand and even though I was just delving into hardcore photography, I felt like I knew how to work most everything on it. I already owned some Nikon lenses so it was natural that I didn't have to start from scratch, although some serious upgrading was necessary.  

Nikon D750

Landing right in the middle of Nikon's full-frame format cameras, the D750 was the perfect mixture of style and substance for me. I shoot a lot of video at work and the ability of the D750 to handle aperture changes in live-view mode made it an easy choice over the D610 but at a lower price point than the D810. Coupled with an aftermarket battery grip, I can shoot photo and video for hours. The tilting view screen makes it easy to shoot via a tripod at higher or lower angles while still being able to see what is on screen.

Nikkor 24-120mm VR Lens

With the step up to the full-frame sensor, a new lens was necessary to get the full range of the D750. In stepped the Nikkor 24-120mm VR lens. It's not the fastest of lenses and is quite heavy, but when shooting at an event, the extra zoom is really helpful and it's crystal clear images never disappoint. When shooting video during the day (once again, not the fastest) the 24-120mm has pulled down some seriously crisp footage that rivals anything I've seen from a prime lens. A little heavy for a travel setup, the 24-120mm is ideally situated for short photo outings when you know you won't be able to get super close to your subject. At f/4 you can still get some nice bokeh, which is helpful.

Nikkor 50mm 1.8g Lens

The Nikkor 50mm 1.8g lens is the workhorse of my photo and video setup. Still not the fastest 50mm in the Nikon lineup, the 50mm 1.8g is consistently my go to lens for pretty much everything; video, photo, portrait, travel, you name it. On my recent trip to Paris and Amsterdam it was the only lens that I packed due to its versatility and small footprint. You can check out some of the images I shot on that trip here. The cheapest lens in my setup and yet the one that I use the most. If you have a Nikon camera and don't have one of these, go get one right now.

Peak Design Strap Pack

I have an unhealthy fear of dropping my camera in a large crowd while everyone laughs, so my first purchase after buying a new camera was to invest in a low profile strap that was suited to quick changes. Peak Design's strap pack that includes their leash and cuff was exactly what i needed. Featuring theirAnchor Link Quick-Connection System, the leash and cuff are perfect for any working photographer that has to change to tripod or monopod mounted video quickly without having a strap hanging down and making noise. I've even got an anchor attached to the bottom of my battery grip so that the D750 can hang sideways on my waist without the screen scratching up against my belt.

There's plenty of other gear that I'd love, like my newly acquired Nikkor 85mm 1.8D (or a 1.4g if anyone wants to gift it) and an Atomos Ninja-2 video recorder, but for now the smaller the setup the better. After all, my Tenba DNA 15 can only hold so much at one time.

Shooting Film in a Digital Age

By Daniel Wood

Let me first start by saying I don’t want this to be a film is better or digital is better discussion. It’s useless as they both have their reasons for using. And luckily for both camps, advances in technology have made it easier to use both and incorporate them into each other’s realm.

A while back, even a mere 5 years ago, nobody dreamed of artistically viewing photos on a computer screen or especially a cell phone screen, but, because they have become so ubiquitous and with such high-resolution displays, people do view digitally more than they look at printed photos. Still, there is nothing I love seeing more than a well-printed photograph or an incredibly curated photo book.

Despite what Instagram might suggest, filters are not meant to make photos look like film. They’re meant to make photos look like OLD faded photographs. Like what you find in your grandparents box of photos tucked inside their closet. Film itself is actually incredibly well detailed and with lifelike colors and sharpness. Each brand (mostly Fuji, Kodak and Ilford these days) have their own look to the film and offer different types (film stocks) for different occasions. Film even has a much higher dynamic range, and before anybody talks about HDR techniques, they are available to film shooters too and it requires a static subject. I shoot film because of this realism that it creates.


One of the most important aspects of photographing to me is the experience I have while shooting. I want to be inspired when I photograph. Each and every camera, whether film or digital, offers its own unique style. The way the camera handles, the controls, the way you see through the viewfinder, the feeling you get when you click the shutter. It all adds up to inspire you.

When I feel like walking around shooting whatever pops in front of me and I need compact camera that is discreet, I strap my Leica over my shoulder and shoot nearly invisibly due to its whisper quite shutter. However, when I need something a bit larger and have an idea of what I will be photographing I will bust out the Hasselblad and peer down through the most amazing viewfinder in the world. I feel like I’m in another dimension with that camera. Plus, the big square image I get afterwards and the huge CLUNK when you press the shutter is immensely satisfying. And when I have a project that is set in stone and I want to get the best image I can, I mount my 4x5 monorail camera on its tripod and take all the time in the world. That is a camera of patience and imagination since you must set up your photo, look through the ground glass screen and then insert the film which blocks your view and finally you can activate the shutter. But the detail of that image is unparalleled!

For someone who wants to get into film photography, whether already well-versed in digital or getting into photography for the first time, there is a camera for you. I tend to shoot cameras that are purely mechanical without automatic functions but that is only because they work for what I shoot and fit my workflow. There are film cameras still being made with just as much automation of exposure and focus as any digital camera will give.

For someone who wants to learn all the basics I’d stick with a manual camera like my trusty Pentax K1000 that can be picked up with a great lens for $50-$100 on a regular basis. For someone who wants a bit more dedicated functions the Canon AE-1 is a great camera around the same price. And if you want something like the experience and handling of shooting a modern digital camera, the Nikon F6 is still being made for around $2000 new. If you already have a digital and want to use your current lineup of lenses, there are plenty of great used film cameras that will most likely accept those same lenses, especially from Nikon, Canon and Pentax.

Once you find that perfect camera for you, choosing what you do with the images is up to you. First you must get them developed either at your local photo lab or there are plenty available online in which you mail your film to the lab and they return within a week or two. You can also choose to have them scan the film for you to edit on your computer and upload to your portfolio site, send to friends, or post on Instagram. If you are adventurous, it’s rather easy to develop black and white negatives at home using a few simple chemicals and a bathroom.


If you choose to print your photos, labs will typically do very good inkjet prints for you at a size you choose, or if you are lucky enough, there will be a darkroom lab in your community you can go to and print your photos yourself. That’s where the real magic happens! Many colleges also have at least a black and white darkroom that can be used if you enroll in a class. Color printing is a bit more difficult and requires specialized chemicals and equipment, but well worth it if you have access.

Lastly, for those who aren’t ready to dive into film but want to explore some of the looks of different films, companies like VSCO sell different “film stocks” that can be used as plug-ins in Photoshop and Lightroom or whatever other photo editor you use. Some of them are intended to replicate actual films both current and vintage but also offer effects like expired film or light leaks and faded photographs.

All that really matters, though, is that you find something that works for you. Maybe it’s one camera that does it all or several different cameras that offer their own experience. Go out and explore, experiment and be inspired.

Daniel Wood is a writer, photographer and musician who currently resides in Seattle, WA. He is a lover of music and art and is consistently working on blending different mediums together to create unique pieces that tend to focus on introspection through the outward examination of others. His works include “Self-Portraits” a hand-bound letter-pressed photo/story book featuring 4x5 fabric contact prints and “Untitled Dreams I, II and III” which are massive 35’ long prints. His ongoing project “The Streets” is merely a collection of photographs which document the surroundings in which he immerses himself in.