Sunday, May 3, 2009

Get the Goods: Domke PhoTOGS Vest

Thanks to my nice income tax refund, I was able to purchase some long coveted items from my ever-growing Photography Wish List. The first one was the Domke PhoTOGS vest.

Sure, I suffered some buyer's remorse at the checkout counter when I purchased a vest for just under $100 at the Denver Pro Photo store about two months ago. But that jacket has got to be one of the best investments I've made in my journey to become a professional photographer. I knew it was something I had to get because one of my favorite photogs at The Denver Post loved his for its convenience and flexibility. Instead of carrying a bag, this photojournalist used the 18 pockets in his vest to hold is equipment, including numerous lens, batteries, and CF cards. I have come to love my vest as well! If you get one, I would suggest assigning pockets where the same items go into the same space EVERY TIME the vest is worn (the same way some do in their camera bags to make sure nothing is missing). I spent a devil of a time fumbling around trying to remember where I put things during my first photo event where I wore it.

I'm terrible about making sure I take plenty of business cards with me on assignments. But the removable press pass holder was the perfect spot for me to have those cards out in the open to hand out to potential new clients. With my company name plastered in bold letters on the card and the solid black vest with accessory rings and cotton mesh screaming "professional!" I think the whole set-up was the easiest way to market my business besides word of mouth.

The waist adjustment tabs and the heavy-duty double-pull zipper and adjustable closure gave me more room to adjust the vest to my womanly curves. At first I was worried that the padded shoulders would make me look like a rejected linebacker, but it was extremely comfortable. The well placed pockets (even ones on the back of the vest) were large enough for me to hold a 70-200 mm and a 16-35 mm on my body for quick and easy change-outs without dealing with a bag. Pens, batteries, CF cards and personal essentials such as my driver's license were all easily within reach. I can't wait to put the hand warmer pockets to the test during a Colorado winter day.


Lisa Piellusch said...

Reminds me of my husband's fishing vests! ;)

I can see how practical it can be, but what about comfort, especially in the hotter weather?

Did you look at the waist packs at all? I've seen them online (of course I can't remember what brand), and I've been contemplating that sort of thing.

There are so many options these days!

-- Lisa P.

Sheba Wheeler said...

I found it to be extremely comfortable, Lisa. I wore a short sleeved dress underneath it I think a t-shirt would be fine too in the summer time. It's more comfortable than lugging my bag on my back everywhere. I'm not good with waist packs, but I'm a true believer in using what works best for you. Ultimately I would like to get a rolling backpack that I can pull behind me. But for now, the vest works.

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