500px Shop offers you the best photography supplements, carefully curated by our team. We’ll introduce high quality and useful products to make your lives easier and your photography experiences even more amazing.

Today we bring you the Photographer’s Pouch, designed and produced by Will Kortum. We caught up with him to talk about his product and his love of photography.

Hi Will! Can you tell us about your product, The Photographer’s Pouch?

Hi! The Photographer’s Pouch is a small felt pouch measuring 9 x 15cm with a Velcro back that allows it to stick inside of most camera bags. It can be used to hold anything from business cards to average-sized point and shoots.


How did you come up with this idea?

I first came up with the Photographer’s Pouch through frustration with my camera bag. Its design is very open with few spots to put small things in, so I would always end up throwing little accessories like lens caps and filters directly into the bag and on top of my cameras. Over time, my bag would become messier and messier. I designed the pouch to remedy this problem and to help me keep a tidier and more organized bag.

Why did you choose to use felt as the material?

I chose smooth felt because I wanted something that would be soft enough to protect lenses, filters, and cameras from scratches but that would be less prone to sticking to Velcro. The Photographer’s Pouches do stick together, but are very easy to take apart- unlike the strong bond created between camera bag liner and Velcro.


So you’re a photographer yourself. What is your favorite type of photography?

I primarily shoot street photography, but I’ve been experimenting with urban landscapes recently. I’m a student so I don’t have a huge amount of free time to shoot, but when I can it is usually on the streets. I also love the works of Jean Gaumy and Ragnar Axelsson though, which is more social documentary photography.


What do you shoot with?

For the past 7 months or so, I was shooting almost exclusively Neopan 400 in my Leica M6 and two Ricoh GR1’s, but I’ve recently been focusing more on color work. Nowadays, I usually shoot with my M6 (loaded with Velvia 100), a Sony RX1, and a Ricoh GR1s (loaded with Neopan). The GR1 has a near-permanent place in my pocket.

How do you use The Photographer’s Pouch?

I use three pouches in my bag when I’m out shooting. One for batteries, filters, and lens caps, one for business cards, and one for either my GR1 or a flash.

Can you give us an example of a time that this Pouch really helped improve your lifestyle as a photographer?

I don’t lose as many lens caps, and my bag is tidier. I also don’t have to worry about taking my camera out and having a bunch of business cards and batteries fall out.


What is your favorite thing about photography?

First and foremost, I think that photography is fun. This isn’t a really “deep” answer, but I think that something really has to be fun for one to truly like it. Whether it is walking around the streets and taking portraits or looking over newly developed slides at 1 in the morning, I really have fun doing it.

On a deeper level, I really appreciate the human interaction that photography brings. When I am out shooting, I love to have conversations with the people that I’m photographing. I think that having a conversation with someone who you generally wouldn’t is a really positive thing.


Any advice for up and coming photographers?

I consider myself an up and coming photographer, so I can’t really offer much. I do have two pieces of advice, though: Read photo books and don’t get caught up in gear. My friend, street photographer Eric Kim, always says that you are what you eat. If you only look at junky photos, your photos won’t improve. Looking at the work of the masters such as Henri Cartier-Bresson and Robert Frank has improved my photography more than I can say.

If you’re just starting a photo book library, I would strongly recommend ordering the book Magnum Contact Sheets. It is really expensive for a book at $90, but worth every penny. The “list of Magnum photographers” page on Magnum’s website is another fantastic resource for improving your work. While I don’t think that looking at photos online can compare to reading a book, it is free after all.


I’m incredibly hypocritical about getting caught up in gear. I have extreme GAS (gear acquisition syndrome) and am guilty of owning several more cameras than I need. The truth is, you really only need one camera to produce good work, and your work will be even better if you do so. Having a visual consistency is very important and sticking with one camera and one lens really helps.

Secondly, nearly every new >micro 4/3 camera out there has better, or similar at least, image quality to 35mm film. The masters of photography have been shooting with film for years and their photos are great. Image quality, in the end, doesn’t matter too much. The legendary Japanese photographer Daido Moriyama shoots with a $100 Canon point and shoot. Shoot with what you have and read photo books!

Awesome advice. Thanks Will!

You can buy a Photographer’s Pouch at 500px Shop for $11 or a pack of three for $29.