The Story Behind the Top Shelf

The Story Behind the Top Shelf

“I put 100% of my focus on the Top Shelf and nothing else.”

When it started, it was mainly a process of thinking and prototyping the ideal design for what would ultimately become The Top Shelf. It was a slow start at first and after almost three years, nothing great was happening. One day I found myself biking across the Burrard Street Bridge in Vancouver, BC, when I envisioned the full concept, design, and end result of the Top Shelf. Right then and there I knew more than anything, it was going to be huge. And that was confirmed with real life proof when we raised $85,000 within the first hour on Kickstarter.

The creation of the Top Shelf was long overdue. As a photographer myself, I had begun to feel extremely annoyed with the ill-equipped camera bags that were being offered. Every other camera sling and shoulder bag is designed to be really skinny and compact, and to have all your gear stored vertically - which means you need to take out gear to get to your other gear that’s buried underneath. So it’s far more ideal to have a camera backpack because then you have an open layout where you can see and access all your gear at once. The problem is, it takes time and effort to take it off your back, place it on the ground - possibly dirty ground depending on where you are - open it up, etc. Every photographer knows all-too-well about the missed photo opportunities because you didn’t want to deal with the hassle of stopping to take off your backpack to get your gear. With the Top Shelf, you get a shoulder bag that is exceptionally skinny and compact but also has the capability to fold out and have the same huge open-layout as a backpack, and is even quicker to access than the smallest shoulder bag thanks to our quick release push button. And as a bonus, you’ve got a stable platform at your side wherever you are.

For the last 12 years, all I could think about has been camera bags - some would say I’m obsessed! When it came to creating the bag itself, I put 100% of my focus on the Top Shelf and nothing else. I was fortunate enough to be able to work with one of the top manufacturers in the world, and received plenty of helpful advice from several very successful people in the field, along the way.

Our product may not necessarily be changing people’s lives, but it’s certainly improving their photography. If you are a professional photographer, The Top Shelf can enhance your photography capabilities and better your career. 

Let The Top Shelf take your photography game to the next level. Learn more about the camera bag I designed on our product page.

the top shelf, best open-layout camera bag, fastest camera bagbest camera bag
Back to blog