Looking at what's being made at home and inspiration.

As I have been working on test shoots, to improve on my lighting manipulating and styling, I have forgone mentioning something else.  Lately I have been buying more heritage clothing and shoes.  My dad would be shocked if I told him how much each item costed.  The way I see it that I am spending a lot up front, but over time these clothing and shoes will be with me a good 20 years or my entire lifetime.  I am not a fan of fast fashion which majority clothing industry is at right now.  I know that some of my clothes, like my Levi jeans and dress shirts have come from overseas, but I am slowly moving my wardrobe to be Made in America.  If you want to see the human costs of fast fashion here are some youtube links to watch.


John Oliver

Give them a watch.

So these brands that I have been buying?  Wolverine bootsFilson and Allen Edmonds.  So while I do admit that the cost of each item is a little hair raising, e.g., just one pair of my allen edmonds costed me $395.  Thankfully I am done buying dress shoes, or shoes in general.  I previously owned some shoes that I bought from DSW a year and a half ago that broke.  I spent $120 on that one pair.  If I had to spend $120 every year and a half for shoes, that would be more costly if I bought them every year and a half at about the same cost compared to buying a pair of $395 allen edmonds that is recraftable.  What I am trying to say is just buy smart when buying clothing for your wardrobe.  

Because of these new wardrobe purchases my own personal style has evolved from the put whatever comes in my hands or college dressing to a more refined and heritage look.  The three businesses, Wolverine, Filson, and Allen Edmonds have been making their products for a very long time.  I think Filson is the longest lasting one of the three.  Having three of their items, a Mackinaw Cruiser, Tin Cloth Short Cruiser, and their Magnum camera bag, it is suffice to say that I have a great love of their products.  

I am pretty close to finishing my wardrobe now.  I might pick up a pair of Redwing boots...

At this point, how this fits with my food work.. is that I am drafting up story pitches that combines those pieces and brands with food work.  For example, since I am in the city often, one story is a couple guys wearing allen edmonds shoes going to get cocktails and tapas.  Another is of an outdoor shoot, with filson gear and wolverine/redwing boots cooking food over a campfire.  I am trying to iron out those ideas and finding people who would be up for that.  I don't mind if they have to use my items, provided they fit and don't be abusive to them.  

While I was mulling over story pitches and ideas, I did some test shooting.  Check them out.

Filson Magnum Collection bag

Filson bags are made to last.  

I thought to start this piece with that one sentence to put this bag review and impressions into perspective as I delve into this impressions.

Filson teamed up with Magnum photographers- Steve McCurry and David Alan Harvey, to create these bags from photographers for photographers.  The idea was to make bags that would outlast the photographers, made to look not like a camera bag, and awesome.  


I went up to NYC right after work on Friday to pick one up.  Crazy right?  ...yes.  But, as they won't be on sale in their online store till June, I figured might as well go get one now.  Plus I am probably one of the few with them in the proverbial wild right now.  The store itself is pretty nice, small, and intimate.  Limited selection of goods for sure, but the items on sale are really well made.  I decided on getting this bag over an ONA, which I was researching prior to discovering about this Filson, because it doesn't look like a camera bag.  And I am not looking to make a fashion statement with my bag.

Of course being a food and culture photographer, I am not out in the wilderness or in trouble locations as much as magnum photographers.  Still I am in markets and food fairs photographing, so I want do not want to be noticed as a photographer.

The fabric is a densely woven canvas with a wax element in it to prevent water from going in.  It's rugged all over.


The thing with this bag, not sure what the bag name is, is that it can hold a 15in laptop, possibly an ipad as well, a camera with a lens attached, and second lens.  Smaller items like camera batteries, memory cards, and etc can fit into the side pockets.  So using this bag for day trips, or small excursions is its focus.  Though keeping your gear light is probably for the better.  

So as you might not be able to pack away all of your camera gear, this is the bag for your go to gear.  Which is fine with me as I primarily shoot with a 5D3, 50mm zeiss, and a 35L.  


The inside has a cover for the camera gear so wandering eyes won't be able to see the gear unless you leave the flap open.  

Walking around with this on, it felt really secure and snug around me.  The camera was accessible for me to pull it out when I needed to take it out.  And vice versa easy for it to go back in.  

This bag was designed and made in Seattle.  And quality is amazing!  I can't reiterate that enough!  The price tag might be the deal breaker for some.  It runs for $335 before tax.  Though that is comparable to bags from brands like ONA.  At the end of the day, the price tag, while steep, for a bag that will outlive you and keeps your gear that is worth thousands of dollars, it is worth every penny.

If interested and not near their NYC storefront go online at www.filson.com/magnum