Monday, February 27, 2012


Congrats to the winners of my Valentine's Day Contest! They won a FREE Session and viewing CD!
That's pretty cool, if you ask me :)

Here are a few shots that I'm loving. We found a new location - Harry Griffin Park in La Mesa, right down the street from another Northmont Park where I've done a lot of mini-sessions. I'm in love with the location and the images we got were fabulous! Plus Amber's eyes are stunning!

Thanks to Amber and Jason for being so fun to work with! :)

All images © Andrea Garvin, 2012

Monday, February 6, 2012

Lowepro Event Messenger Series


Above images © Andrea Garvin 2012

I recently had the opportunity to test out the new Event Messenger 150 – one of Lowepro’s new camera bags. To say I was excited would be an understatement – I was ecstatic. I desperately needed a new camera bag for shooting events, weddings and portraits. But I had never used a Lowepro bag, so I was a bit skeptical.

After I crammed as much gear as possible into every nook and cranny of the bag, I toted it around the lake near my house. It was a short, easy walk, about half a mile. I wanted to test out how comfortable this bag would be before I committed to using it on a long shoot.It proved to be pretty comfortable after all. The strap is thicker than my previous bag, which, I think, is why I found it easier to carry on my shoulder for longer periods of time.

My initial test went well, so I decided, what the heck, I’ll take it out for my next photo session. Sure enough, it was still comfortable and it holds a surprising amount of gear for its size - two lenses, a flash, two Pocket Wizards, a lens cloth, a lens pen and other pens, extra CF cards, an extra battery and charger, business cards, my keys, sunglasses and cell phone. Plus I figured out I could attach my reflectors by clipping a carabineer to the handle.

Any complaints? The only thing I can possibly complain about is the small buckle on the front, to keep the top flap closed. I never saw myself using it (except when I was traveling to a location and wanted to ensure everything stayed in place) and it is not adjustable, and given the fact that I was trying to carry too much gear, the front flap didn’t close properly. I definitely don’t recommend over-packing to all of you. Had the buckle been adjustable, I probably could have worked it out even though I was carrying more gear than I should have, but what can I say, I over pack. I'm a girl, it’s my nature. As soon as I was able to contain my excitement, I pared it down to the essentials, and I was good to go.

The smaller front pocket is great too – that’s where I’ve stored my spare CF cards, an extra battery and charger, there is a great space for a lens pen, and other pens. However, there is a slot for an SD card, which I find not-so-useful since I use bigger cards that don’t fit into that space, so it goes unused for now.

My favorite feature, I’d have to say, is the somewhat-hidden pocket on the back of the bag. When the bag is sitting against my hips, you wouldn’t be able to tell there was a pocket at all. Which is great, because I know I can keep my wallet there, since I won’t be needing it for the shoot, and I know it wont fall out because the pocket is pretty deep. Also the fact that the Velcro on the front flap can be switched into “silent mode” (here is a piece of non-velcro fabric that can be placed over the Velcro to avoid making any noise) which is fantastic for us wedding photographers who hate it when our bags make a terrible ripping sound in the middle of a beautiful ceremony because we thought it important to change lenses. Thanks to Lowepro, we need not worry about that anymore.

After taking the Event Messenger 150 on 5 shoots, and a couple walks around town, I know I’ll absolutely be using it in the future. Not onlyis it comfortable and small enough to be convenient to carry for long periods of time (gotta love those 10-hour days), but it lends great access to all my essentials. Plus it has a great frame, so I know I can set it down without it falling over and dumping all my equipment on to the ground (depending on how I’ve positioned everything). All in all I would say it’s a great bag for event shooters who travel on the lighter side. Thanks for converting me, Lowepro. :)

Check out these cool pictures (from some awesome photographers) of me using my bag!

David Crewe Photography

Angela Powell Wolfe

Jason deAlba

(top image by Tracy van Dam