SIMPLYPHOTO » Rockford Wedding Photography by Chris Warkocki

Welcome to the Family – Hold Fast Money Maker

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Well I should definitely start off by thanking Luis Hermosillo of Luis Hermosillo Photography for getting me the info and letting me play with his new camera strap system so I too could make the tough decision of spending a large amount of hard earned cash on some leather straps.

As you’ve probably noticed I’m a bit of a gear nut and I wouldn’t call it a bad thing but it does make life very difficult cause you want to own everything and anything you may think that will make your life better. In this instance I honestly didn’t need to buy a dual camera strap system since I already own and use the Black Rapid Double strap which has served it’s purpose very well. Now seeing as the Black Rapid variant is in direct comparison I will give some input to it’s advantages and disadvantages when I give my little review down here.

So what did I buy? I am now the very happy owner of a Hold Fast Money Maker dual camera system. How is it different from the competition? Well, it’s leather for one and that’s basically the only real main difference between it and any competing system besides price and features which I will get in to. I’m going to start off and shock a few people and let you all in on the steep price tag of $260 for the strap I purchased. It’s a lot of money for a strap to hold your camera and a lot of money in general.

Why?

As a photographer who focuses on weddings and is also well aware about how everything I do is an extension of my business I tend to have to dress nice every weekend but I have to dress nice but also be able to run around and chase the bride and groom for 10 to 16 hours. If I were to rock a three piece fitted suit I may have to kill myself because it’s hard enough in dress pants and a dress shirt to move and flex around to get all the angles in the day while carrying all your camera gear. My reasoning for the dual strap in the first place was to lighten my load and give me options I can get to quickly. Instead of carrying my whole bag I typically carry a tiny 2 lens bag and my two cameras have greatly varying lens focal lengths. My main camera has the Sigma 35mm 1.4 and the second camera attached to me is an 85mm Nikon. With those two focal lengths I would only change lenses about 2 or 3 times in a day and for very specialized instances like macro ring shots or if something is too far away for the 85mm to be affective. With a traditional behind the neck strap I would quit life having to carry two cameras like that and thank goodness someone invented a way to cary both while evenly distributing the weight across the shoulders.

Why Leather?

Honestly because it looks a lot better. If I’m going to dress up why dress up all sexy and then toss a black camera strap with words all over it on my shoulder??? You’re not just the photographer but also a guest to the wedding so you should look your best and hopefully even shower prior to arriving to the wedding. 🙂

So how well does this strap function?

I’m in love with the Money Maker strap. It does everything I need it to do, which is hold my cameras and give me the ability to use both of them, but it’s also extremely comfortable. The leather itself is Water Buffalo and it hugs the body and conforms to it’s natural curves. I have been wearing the straps every day for the past week and I have zero discomfort. Speaking of numbers I’m going to give a quick review slash rating for some various aspects of the strap in case you are also in the market for a great looking and functional dual camera system.

Comfort: 8/10

The strap is super comfortable but it does take time for the leather to soften and conform to your body. This is where the Black Rapid Dual strap inches away since it’s super padded and doesn’t have any break in needed.

Usability: 8/10

Again the straps are well made and the camera slides really well but again it will take time to break in the leather and the glide will become smoother over time. Black Rapid wins in smoothness of movement but loses in form because the fabric they use is so lose it tangles and moves around a lot during a days shooting.

Design: 7/10

This doesn’t have to do with looks but actual design standards. I feel a few modifications would make this a superior product to anything on the market. It has a not so easy to release quick release which is great and I have a picture of it so don’t be afraid that it will open up out of nowhere because it would take a lot for that to happen. What I would prefer is a way to lock it like Black Rapid does. Yes it’s nearly impossible to unlock the system unless someone actually sneaks up and pulls the release which is why I still have some concern. It still can be released and a custom designed lock with the hook it has now would take it over the top. I’m also a little sad about the safety strap it comes with. You’ll see in the picture of me holding the camera to my face their is a little black safety strap incase the fastener dislodges somehow. Why fabric??? Why not another nice piece of leather with some rivets and a nicer connector???

Look: 10/10

This thing is sexy and if you want to feel sexier as a photographer this is for you!

Overall: 9/10

This is not an average just a final feeling after using the strap and being out in public with it. People love it and ask you about it because it’s not something you see everyday. As an actual accessory or tool for the trade it does it’s job very well and even though I nitpicked it I feel it’s minuses are extremely minute and just ramblings of a photographer.

In the end it’s about how it works and it works so very well. If you’re looking for an upgrade or just need something that looks better than what you currently have then this is the best choice for you.

I’d like to give Luis a shout out for buying one first so I could try it before I spent the money I work so hard to make. Also thank you so much for taking some snaps of me wearing it so I could use it on my blog right here. Everyone check out Luis Hermosillo Photography and don’t forget to check out the pics below!!!

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  • October 15, 2014 - 2:08 pm

    Tye Eldridge - Hey just a quick question in regards to the non bridal leather strap, have you had any issues with the dye running at all? They mention there is a possibility of it when the strap gets soaked (from either rain or sweat I imagine) so I was just wondering if you have ran into this problem at all and gotten some stains any shirts or what not. I’ve been caught up on which style to buy I absolutely love the look of the burgundy water buffalo one but am a bit worried about the problem so I’ve been hunting down photographer’s blog that use the strap.
    Also just want to say you do absolutely amazing work! Keep it up

    Thanks,
    TyeReplyCancel

    • October 15, 2014 - 2:21 pm

      Chris Warkocki - Hey Tye!

      I actually sweat quite a bit and I’ve yet to see any dye stains. I do wear darker clothes but my vest I’m normally rocking is stain free. Btw, after rocking this all season it’s completely worth it!!ReplyCancel

      • October 16, 2014 - 7:44 pm

        Tye - Well thanks for getting back to me man. Yeah definitely went ahead and decided to pick one up. Thanks again man!ReplyCancel

  • November 6, 2014 - 6:17 am

    Brian Wolfe - Chris. First of all, thank you so much for this review. Not only did it start my internal dialogue about whether or not to forsake my black rapid getup and invest in some straps of my own, it turned me on to your great work. I love the feel of your images. Strong work my bearded brother. Keep it up.

    Couple questions:
    1. What size strap did you get? How tall are you? I’m 6’2″ and it seems the medium size might be up my alley.
    2. Do you find any need for the portrait sliders that Hold Fast offers?
    3. Have you added any other holdfast accessories? How do you carry your lenses?
    4. Since we’re talking you, where do you buy your vests/?ReplyCancel

  • July 18, 2015 - 12:47 pm

    Will - My water buffalo strap actually left stain on both of my shoulders after the first use.ReplyCancel

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