Promoting Your Photography Tours

Are you looking to add value of your photography tours and turn your clients into walking, talking billboards for your company?

If your business caters to photographers, a good way to add value to your clients is to provide them something they will use and share with people they come into contact with. Photographers are always in the market for tools that make photography easier.

Camera support bean bags are an inexpensive way to add value to your photography clients and spread brand awareness. Just image how much happier your photography clients will be during your safari because you gave them a tool that makes photography easier, especially when they’re photographing from a safari vehicle.

Camera support bean bags can be customized to match your company color scheme and can include your company name and/or logo.

Before clients return home, offer them a discounted price on your branded camera support bean bags that they have used and love. Now every time they use the camera bean bag, other photographers (who are your potential clients) will see your brand and website information and ask your client questions about your company. Not only have you increased your brand awareness, the past client shares their experience (giving a testimonial) and promotes their positive experience with your company.

The American made bean bag camera supports are available in 3 different sizes and are great for wildlife, landscape, sport/event photography. They are also backed by a lifetime workmanship warranty. To order, head over to TheVestGuy.com.

Cold Weather Gear for Photographers

Buffalo Wool Company

I dislike being cold. Hate is a strong word that I don’t use very often but it’s fitting to say I HATE being cold.

Being a wildlife photographer has many perks but being outdoors in sub-zero environments isn’t one of them. Sometimes wildlife photography requires being out in the field when most people would prefer snuggling up next to the fire with a hot cup of coffee.

A few months back I met Rob and Theresa who own The Buffalo Wool Company. The manufacturer products made out of bison fur. Not only are they cool folks, they are incredibly knowledgeable about bison and how to make quality products. I shared my frustration about freezing when photographing wildlife in the winter. They offered some suggestions.

Yellowstone National Park, January 2017
Yellowstone National Park, January 2017

I ended up ordering a pair of the Bison/Merino fingerless gloves, the bison beanie, the flip mitts, trekker boot socks, crew socks, and the insoles.

Buffalo Wool Co

The order arrived extremely fast. Here are the goods.

I was eager to put them up to the test. I did a trial run during a photography tour to the Grand Teton National Park in Jackson, Wyoming. It was -24 degrees and snowing. My hands staying really warm. When wearing the flip mitts I make the mistake of not getting all my fingers in the mitten when switching from flipped open to flipped close. It didn’t take long to realize why my pinky finger was going numb.

When I returned home to Salt Lake City I wore the gloves and beanie during a walk in the snowstorm.

My head stayed warm
My head stayed warm

My head and hands were still warm. Nothing beats some good gloves, socks, boot insoles, and a beanie that keep me toasty.

I HIGHLY recommend The Buffalo Wool Company. Make an investment in quality American Made products. Their gloves are backed by their satisfaction guarantee that’s as straight forward as it gets… “Satisfaction Guaranteed: NO FINE PRINT,  If you don’t truly love them, send them back.” They are priced slightly higher than the cheap imported stuff you’ll find elsewhere but definitely worth the investment. When you buy from companies that are Made in America.

As an added bonus for a limited time, my friends at The Buffalo Wool Co are giving my friends a special savings. From now through 2/28/17 use coupon code robsfriend to receive 10% off your order.

Exclusive Buffalo Wool Company coupon
Exclusive Buffalo Wool Company coupon

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Let’s talk about boots, baby!

For years any time I am out shooting in the field, my feet FREEZE! It’s one thing when my hands and face are cold but once my feet get cold, it’s all down hill from there. Unless I am photographing something incredibly awesome, the cold feet quickly ends my desire to keep shooting. I took my “What are your favorite boots?” question to facebook and received lots of recommendations.

Meet my new favorite boots.

Cabela's Men's Zoned Comfort Trac Boots. Photo credit: Cabelas.com
Cabela’s Men’s Zoned Comfort Trac Boots. Photo credit: Cabelas.com

These are Cabela’s Mens Zoned Comfort Rubber Boots. You read that right, rubber boots. Who knew? Judging by the response I received on facebook, apparently some of you knew rubber boots may be the way to go. At first I was incredibly hesitant about rubber muck boots. My experience with rubber boots is that they’re great for working in mud but I was looking for boots that I would hike in while in the field. After hearing my concerns, the shoe sales person at Cabela’s suggested I try them on to see if they field like past rubber boots I’ve owned. I tried them on and I was sold.

These boots have 2,000 grams of thinsulate in the toebox, 1,600 grams in the saddles, and 1,200 in the heels. They’re a bit on the heavy side (6 pounds) but it’s a small trade off in comparison to how warm they keep my feet.

The boots are Cabela’s brand which means they come with a lifetime warranty. If ANYTHING goes wrong or I somehow wear them out, they are replaced for free. (Seriously folks, who doesn’t like products that are fully backed by the manufacturer?)

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Cold Weather Killing Your Camera Battery?

If you are a photographer or know someone who is, and you (they) photograph in cold temperatures, keep reading! I assure you will thank me later as this will quickly become a necessity.

See this pouch?

Camera Battery Cold Weather Pouch by TheVestGuy.com
Camera Battery Cold Weather Pouch by TheVestGuy.com

Whether you shoot Canon, Nikon, Sony, Pentax, or another brand camera, this is no ORDINARY pouch. During a recent trip to the Tetons, it was FREEZING…… as in -24*F. Brrr! All was well until I pulled out my camera gear and put the batteries to work against the cold weather.

Epic fail!

If you have ever photographed in cold weather, you know the feeling of seeing your battery charge literally deteriorate quickly due to freezing temperatures.

#TheStruggleIsReal

Photography gear, camera batteries especially, are no match for cold temperatures. You can insert a fully charged battery and within an hour it is completely dead. Keeping batteries in a warm climate was the solution, but how? Frustrated, The Vest Guy created the ultimate solution.

Meet the Camera Battery Cold Weather Pouch.

Camera Battery Cold Weather Pouch by TheVestGuy.com
Camera Battery Cold Weather Pouch by TheVestGuy.com

The camera battery cold weather pouch is the ULTIMATE SOLUTION to keeping your camera batteries charged longer!

The photography camera cold weather pouch features a mesh pocket to house an activated hand warmer. The hand warmer keeps batteries nice and toasty, making for a happier photographer and a higher chance of getting the images you are in the field to photograph. Depending on the warmers you use, batteries can be kept warm for 8-10 hours. When you remove one of the batteries, the built-in webbing dividers keep the remaining batteries secure.

Camera Battery Cold Weather Pouch by TheVestGuy.com
Camera Battery Cold Weather Pouch by TheVestGuy.com

Available in two sizes:

– Medium: for smaller batteries like Canon 7D2, 5D3 (shown above)

– Large: for bulkier batteries like 1DX, ID-IV (shown below)

The camera battery pouch carrier comes in a large selection of color choices. The products are Made in the USA. Have specialized batteries? No problem! Items can be fully customized to meet your needs. The bonus…  The Vest Guy products, items are backed by a lifetime workmanship warranty.

To snag your camera battery cold weather pouch or to browse other Vest Guy items, head over here.

See, I told ya you’d thank me. 🙂

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TFCFL XML T6 LED Flashlight Review

I’m a gadget guy. (Honestly, which guy isn’t?) With 16 years of law enforcement, I have seen my fair share of flashlights. From photographing wildlife, experimenting with light painting and nightscape photography, or just having fun, I enjoy being outdoors and flashlights are a necessity. Not that long ago we went through the CERT training where the importance of emergency preparedness is stressed. I have an emergency go bag (EDC) with everything you could image but wasn’t entirely satisfied with my flashlights. They weren’t bad per se, but I always have my eyes open for quality gadgets and toys. When I stumbled cross the TFCFL XM-L T6 flashlight and saw it was under $40, I figured I’d give it a chance.

I ordered the TFCFL XML T6 10000 lumen flashlight from Amazon. It arrived yesterday and I got to play with it last night. Woot woot! I’ll let the flashlight speak for itself.

The 10,000 lumens is very bright, brighter than anything I’ve ever seen. The multiple bulbs make for more of a floodlight vs laser spot light. I am excited to use it for light painting distant objects for nightscape photography. It’s quite large (image the size of a soda can) but it’s aluminum frame keeps it lightweight. The flashlight will be a good addition to my emergency bag. I am ordering a second TFCFL flashlight to keep on my bed table. Whoever finds themselves on the other end of the flashlight will wish they hadn’t entered my house.

TFCFL Flashlight
TFCFL Flashlight

Looking for a LED flashlight alternative? I highly recommend the Smiling Shark 5,000 lumen headlamp too. I was happy with the headlamp until the LED flashlight arrived. In this case, brightness matters so the flashlight wins for me.

Smiling Shark Headlamp
Smiling Shark Headlamp

 

CREE LED Flashlight 10,000 Lumen
CREE LED Flashlight 10,000 Lumen
CREE LED Flashlight 10,000 Lumen
CREE LED Flashlight 10,000 Lumen

LED Flashlight-2363

Have a favorite flashlight or headlamp? Share with us in the comments.

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The Vest Guy CERT Medic Vest Review | Jackson

 

Jackson

Today we’ll review the CERT Vest by TheVestGuy.com. The CERT medic vest was designed by real flight medics then modified to traditional CERT colors. (To see the original {not quite as reflective} medic vest, go here.)

CERT Medic Vest

 

Pretty fancy, right? 😉

Flight medics came to us looking for a solution for their flight crew. Although life flight is essentially a mobile ICU unit, there are times when the crew would prefer having access to supplies in the field without being confined to carrying a bulky bag.

See the front and rear name tags that currently read CERT? Well those bad boys can read Flight Crew, Flight Nurse, AirMed, Flight Medic, CERT, or whatever you want. From the name tag, down to the color, material type, pocket style and placement etc, you can design this vest to meet your specific needs.

For review purposes let’s stick with the features in the pictures.

CERT Medic Vest2

 

CERT Medic Vest Features:

  • Front and back name tags can be sewn on or on velcro (standard feature!)
  • Dual adjustable sides that expand up to 8″ on each side
  • Front and back reflective striping
  • Heavy duty YKK zip closure
  • Radio pocket with elastic/snap closure
  • Dual upper elastic loops near the shoulder
  • Clear ID sleeve for displaying identification badge
  • 2 D rings for clipping keys, flashlight, etc
  • Pen/marker holder
  • 3 medium size velcro closure pockets
  • 2 oversized zip pouches that fully open (Each pouch has elastic loops for securing medications, syringes, etc)
  • Hidden zipper pocket inside each lower zip pouch
  • Oversized back pocket with zip closure for storing larger items such as a tablet, computer, or clipboard
  • A large selection of sizes to choose from

CERT-MEDIC

 

This vest features ample room for carrying essentials (shears, tape, gauze, bandages, medications, maps, charts, radio, etc.) plus room for tons more. The best part…… you have ALL your gear and your hands are free to tend to more important things.

This product can hold it’s own but if you’re looking for unbiased feedback, see what customer Jackson says about the CERT Medic Vest:

“Quality CERT vest. If you need a vest with POCKETS, consider this one. Often, in various CERT drills, found a backpack was cumbersome to wear especially in buildings with narrow door ways. Able to fit my PPEs (personal protective equipment) and various supplies in this vest, essentially “wearing my backpack”.

Starting from the top, the shoulder strap provides a good attachment point for items with clips. The elastic pen holders along the front of the shoulders can be used for larger sized pens/markers plus noticed items with a clip can also be attached here. For example, was able to attach a second radio or flashlight (L-shaped) on the shoulder.  

Next, the upper right pocket is versatile with the CERT tag, ID card holder and split pocket. The split pocket was a good size to put a smart phone (e.g. iPhone 6) and multi-tool (e.g. Leatherman) in it.

Next, the upper left pen/marker pockets are handy, plus the small radio pocket with elastic cord can fit a FRS radio or small HT ham radio in it. The adjustable elastic cord was good to change length for a shorter ham radio or taller ham radio with extended battery pack. You have to “dig” behind the pocket to find the ends of the elastic cord and tie a knot to the length that you want. Also, the D-rings are handy to hang items from (e.g. emergency whistle).

Next, the middle utility pockets are good for various supplies.

Next, the lower pockets are big and roomy for different types of supplies. Was able to fit items for a small triage/first aid kit in a pocket. Plus, there are additional inside pockets to fit procedure cards or other documentation.

Next, the pockets inside the vest (optional) are nice to hold supplies or documentation. Was able to fit the CERT FOG (field operations guide) in this pocket.

Finally, the back pocket is large enough for a clipboard or small tablet PC. If you have to be a scribe, a flat clipboard with CERT forms would fit in the back pocket. Or whatever else you want to put in there. In addition, the front zipper is easy to use, preferring it to buckles or velcro I have seen on other vests.

Note: If you get the padded shoulder option, the top of the vest may be somewhat stiff restricting arm movement a little. Also, if you get the belt loop option, it will be 4 belt loops attached to the bottom of the vest, which can be used to cinch down the lower part of the vest or just used to attach additional supplies to the vest.

Overall, a nice vest to store all your PPEs, radio and much of your CERT supplies and to have them easily accessible when needed.”

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As Jackson knows, the vest is built like a tank and allows you to “wear” your backpack. Admittedly our products are more expensive than pre-made imported vests. We aren’t in business to compete with cheap disposable products; rather, we pride ourselves on manufacturing quality products designed to last a lifetime. With our products, you get EXACTLY what you want, a quicker turnaround time, no quantity requirements, and the comfort of knowing if something happens, it’s covered by a lifetime workmanship warranty.

All of our products are made to order and can be 100% customized. From safety vests and photography vests, to armbands and radio chest packs, we do it all. Browse our products at TheVestGuy.com . If there is something specific you are looking for, give us a call at (801)725-0076.

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Alaskan and Serengeti Photography Vest Review | Casey & Karen

20160401 untitled-11

Meet Casey and Karen.

They are an adorable couple who love photography and traveling. They enjoy traveling so much they invested in a huge trailer because if you’re going to travel, ya might as well do it right…. Comfortably and with the ones you love.

Speaking of the ones you love, they also love their sweet dog, Polly. Isn’t she BEAUTIFUL?!?!

Photo taken by Casey Balvert
Photo taken by Casey Balvert

So Casey ordered himself the Alaskan Photo Vest from TheVestGuy.com. Casey knew what he wanted…. The Alaskan Photo Vest kicked up a few notches with some added bells and whistle.

Alaskan photo vest in olive
Alaskan photo vest in olive

Casey received his vest and fell in love. Here’s his review….

Casey 1.bmp

Casey: “Have had my Alaskan vest for a couple of months now. FINALLY a vest that actually holds a lot of stuff. Not only does this vest have a great big capacity but it is built like a tank with top quality hardware and the open mesh fabric is cool as well. I love this thing. I have room for two good sized lenses, batteries, light meter, color checker passport, cell phone, range finder, and tons of other equipment. The sides are adjustable. The velcro wraps for the straps are a nice touch. I added a Camelback Lumbar Reservoir to mine to make long hikes a pleasure. Worth every penny. Also the customer service is second to none.”

Casey 2.bmp

Casey: “I have been using my Alaskan Vest for almost six months now and I have found it indispensable. This thing actually holds a useful amount of stuff. A couple of lenses and an extra body is no problem. And bunches of pockets for the smaller stuff. Not only that but it is built like a tank with quality materials throughout; this vest will last a lifetime. Highly recommend this vest if you want to take a lot of equipment into the field. I will be getting a vest for my wife soon as she determines the amount of equipment she wants to carry.”

Shortly thereafter Casey DID contact us again, this time wanting a backpack (for him) and an additional camera vest for lovely Karen. (Men: If your woman loves photography and hates fumbling around with a camera backpack in the field, we HIGHLY recommend investing in a photo vest.)

The situation: Karen has a petite frame and Casey wanted something that she could wear to carry the maximum amount of gear (when needed) yet also have the versatility of a lighter weight vest for when she didn’t need lots of camera gear.

The solution: A modified Serengeti photo vest with buckles to attach a detachable pack as needed. Here is Karen using her camera vest in the field (without the pack).

Karen
Karen

Thank you, Casey and Karen. We love happy customers.

You truly get what you pay for. Admittedly our products are more expensive than pre-made vest made overseas, but you get EXACTLY what you want, a quicker turnaround time, no quantity requirements, and the comfort of knowing if something happens to your camera vest, it’s covered by a lifetime workmanship warranty.

As our satisfied customers know, all of our products are made to order and can be 100% customized. From safety vests and photography vests, to armbands and radio chest packs, we do it all. Browse our products at TheVestGuy.com. If there is something specific you are looking for, give us a call at (801)725-0076.

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