I review a lot of complicated products so it’s nice when something comes along that doesn’t need a lot of explaining. It’s also nice when it’s something that’s useful.
That’s how I feel about the HoldFast Camera Leash, a stylish yet unflashy wrist strap that makes it easy to securely hold your camera without getting tangled up.
I have a love-hate relationship with camera straps. Actually, it’s mostly just hate. Yes, there are lots of very good new straps on the market—put BlackRapid’s and Custom SLR’s offerings in the good pile—but there are some that make me insane. Someone should do a study on how many photo gear designers sideline in the S&M trade. I’m sure there’s some major overlap. But, perhaps, I digress.
Back to the HoldFast Camera Leash. It’s a handsome leather strap that loops over your wrist and attaches securely to the tripod mount on the bottom of your camera via a connector called the Camera Holdfast (sold separately). When I’m out on a shoot, I typically don’t like putting the included camera strap over my shoulder and, instead, wind it around my wrist so I can carry my DSLR casually and securely at my side.
The problem is, the shoulder strap is not designed for this type of usage and ends up getting so tangled up that it blocks the viewfinder of the camera. The Camera Leash is a good solution to this problem. It’s so subtle you’ll forget you’re attached to your camera. But if your DSLR or pricey Leica rangefinder accidentally slips from your hand, you’ll be glad for the attachment. If you want to quickly untether yourself from your camera, there’s no need to unscrew the tripod mount connector; just open the secured clip, and you’re free.
No, this is probably not the sort of thing you’ll want to use while humping it for long distances with your camera. But if you’re out shooting street photography or working loosely in the studio with a model, it’s a nice, secure solution.
Though it might make it more comfortable to add some padding to the strap, I like the Camera Leash’s simplicity. The version I tried came in tasty brown leather with a nifty silver star on top, which made me feel like a real cowboy.
The Bottom Line
If you’re tired of getting tangled up in traditional camera straps, try the simple but chic HoldFast Camera Leash and feel free and secure on your next shoot.
Pros: A simple but secure solution for tethering your camera to your wrist
Cons: Gets a little uncomfortable for long shoots
Price: $44 (Camera Holdfast connector sold separately for $22); www.holdfastgear.com