There is one question I get asked more then any over at events. Why the Duck Tape? And I’m not talking about why I always have a roll in my camera bag that should be obvious the stuff is unbelievably useful in any given situation. No this is about why I have covered up the Brand and Model Number of my camera with Duck Tape.
There is a very good reason for this its also the same as to why I replaced the strap to one not showing my brand. At first glace people think this is odd at best but I don’t think they are thinking it through. Every one who knows me knows a huge Nikon fan boy and can’t understand why I try and hide it. Now let me tell you that is precisely why I hide it I love my Nikon D300s, and I want to keep it. The last thing I want is to draw any more attention to my self then I have to. You will see in the photo to the left and you will see the make and model covered up and the strap replaced with a plain on. On top of that you’ll notice I’ve removed the battery grip and there’s no speedlight mounted. The thing is at events you want a big camera so you attach all the things to it to make sure you can get THE shot or make it easer to use. This makes you very visible and can also make it much easier to get into places you normally can’t I’ve got to the press pit and the front row of gigs based on this.
The problem comes when your out and about you want to be as invisible as possible because there are people out there who might get angry having there photo taken with something like street photography. Worse still you might have some one try and mug you because they see something expensive this is never more true then when your attempting urban discovery and your in run down areas. When in theses situations I do a couple things.
First what I do with Street Photography, I don’t try to be “TO” invisible I’ll either use my old D40 or my main camera the branding is covered battery grip stays on normally but I remove or turn the lens hood the other way round as well as choosing one of my smaller lenses to be less imposing. I then walk round openly taking photos but with a smile on my face and I don’t stay round in any one place to long last thing I want to do is ruin any ones day.
Secondly comes Urban Discovery, I use that name I’ve recently discoed as well I think it sounds good much better then wondering round urban areas looking for interesting scenery. I recent hard the name and it was described as going into run down areas looking for places where nature has tried to take back over so it fits as I do that some times. The problem is theses are always run down areas where there is a lot of crime so the last thing you want to do is attract attention to your self especially as often your on your own in places far away from other people. Pretty dangerous right! in these situations I take as minimal kit as I can dress down again hide my branding. I also don’t have my camera out it stays in a non discreet bag until I find a shot witch I take as discreetly as possible that is with out looking like I’ve something to hide that would also draw attention to my self partly its about looking relaxed and confident with out being imposing difficult I know.
So this is why I have duck tape on my camera there no point taking it out just to show off my brand. I think its also a very good idea to do when your doing travel photography or well shooting anywhere your unsure of just good practice I think.