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I’m the Roller Bag 70 by Eric BOUVET

I’m the Manfrotto Roller Bag 70 (the largest) and I can carry (nearly) anything a photographer might want. A photographer might sometimes make selections for what equipment to take on vacation, but sometimes he or she might bring along the whole collection. Because a photographer never quits, even when there’s no camera around. The photographer’s eye is always framing a shot, scoping out the scene at hand so everything comes together (the work is ever-present and constant…it’s about training the eye even when there is nothing to create with.

So, while I’m waiting, my owner loads me up, again and again! They gave him a 4×5 large format chamber from the 1940s, in the style of Margaret Bourke-White. This is a bulky device, a big wooden box, but it lets you take images straight on, like a Hasselblad, except it’s what you call large format. Of course, you need to bring gear for plan-film. And since you never know, a digital Fuji XT1 as well as a Leica M3 with negative b&w.

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That didn’t include the tripod! It’s a good thing I know just what to do! I’ve got a special pouch that folds out so it can be set inside. When you see me in all my glory, I’ve got several Velcro compartments and some great pockets in the same style with net and zip closure. So big lenses are easy to fit inside.

Next time, I’ll take on the 20X25, which is even bigger!

I’ve got dividers that have integrated Velcro at the ends so you can add compartments depending on the material you’re bringing. I am practical!

They’re easy to open, but the top is held secure by straps. They are practical because there’ll be no dragging along the ground and breaking those zip fasteners.

I am easy to transport and I have a retractable handle, like all suitcases with wheels. Oh, and my wheels are slim, so I glide along effortlessly as you take me from place to place.

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Straps to hold the tripod are included, and so is a waterproof pouch to cover the bag. It’s got great design. There are openings for carrying a tripod on the bag. Or collapse the bag with Velcro. Now you get how well-constructed I really am!

Also, I’m sturdy. Really sturdy! A friend of the photographer’s is helping to take me out of the trunk of the car, but then he slips, and takes me down with him. But no need to panic! Nothing got busted inside because my sides and corners are reinforced. Good thing too, because I also have a compartment for a laptop.

If conditions get a little wet, the photographer may not want to stop to get a waterproof cover to wrap me all up. But who cares? My exterior is water resistant.

Oh, wait! I almost forgot. I’m elegant too! I’m beautifully finished and sleek. Sure, I can carry a lot but I’m no bulky old bag!

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Eric BouvetOther articles by author

Eric Bouvet (born 1961) began his photographic career in 1981 after studying art and graphic industries in Paris.

His interest in photography was sparked when, at the age of 8, he watched the first live television images of the Apollo 11 mission landing on the moon. It was then that he realized the importance of news and historic moments, not to mention capturing them on film.

Bouvet worked as a staff photographer at the French photo agency Gamma during the 1980s, and launched his freelance career in 1990. He first won international recognition with his 1986 pictures of the rescue efforts in the aftermath of a volcano eruption in Omeyra, Colombia. Since then, Bouvet has covered conflicts in Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, Chechnya, Sudan, Somalia, the former Yugoslavia, Lebanon, Israel. Northern Ireland, Kurdistan, Surinam, Burundi, Libya and Ukraina.

He has covered major international events including the funeral of the Ayatollah Khomeini in Iran, the Tiananmen Square in China, the fall of the Berlin Wall, Prague’s Velvet Revolution, the U.S. attack on Libya, the release of Nelson Mandela, and Olympic Games.

He has also worked on many ‘society’ stories including life in Russian jails, young sailors on aircraft carriers, French police working in the Paris suburbs, France’s last coal miners, and life at a pediatric clinic for children with cancer. During the 2012 year, he worked about peace&love stories with a 4X5 field camera and the Burning Man festival. Also with a field camera large format a documentary about "sexe,love..."

His work has been published in many international magazines including Time, Life, Newsweek, Paris-Match, Stern, NYT magazine and The Sunday Times Magazine. He has also led photographic campaigns of UN and various NGOs and charities including Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF), International Red Cross (ICRC), Medecins du Monde (MDM) and Action Against Hunger (ACF).

Along the way, Bouvet has received five World Press Awards, as well as two Visa d’Or, the gold medal of 15th anniversary of the photography, the Bayeux-Calvados Award for War Correspondents, the Public award from Bayeux-Calvados, the Front Line Club award and the Paris-Match Award.

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