From the get-go, HoldFast’s allegiance lies in this: steadfast dedication to professional photographers and the systems they utilize. Committed to paving the way, HoldFast gear accentuates style while also performing comfortably and efficiently. Responsible for creating a new genre within the industry, we’re changing the way photographers look and feel while doing their best work.
In this series, you’ll hear stories of HoldFast gear and the photographers–the pioneers, the adventurers, the originals–that use them. This is How You HoldFast.
It was the style factor, not the functionality, that first drew Rob Deza to HoldFast. A 16 year veteran of the industry, Deza shoots mostly weddings and events.
“I’ve had back surgery, so for me to carry two cameras was really painful. It was very difficult for me to shoot weddings because of my back injury. At the end of a wedding, I would be in pain, and the next day would be worse,” Deza explains. He’d heard about HoldFast through Antonio Rocha Photography and decided to give it a shot.
“That decision changed my life. I discovered that the equipment was not only beautiful, it was also functional. The weight distribution of the straps is amazing, and I am never sore any more, even after a strenuous photo shoot.”
Deza sports the Camera Swagg, the synthetic answer to HoldFast’s legendary leather design, focused on the performance and value aspects of high quality, and in Deza’s words, dependable, camera gear. “The other gear that I’ve tried was bulky and called attention to itself. The material of the other gear also didn’t last. I love the Camera Swagg because the camera hangs from my shoulders. It’s comfortable to walk and move around as I’m trying to capture the best angle,” Deza says.
Deza’s also the official photographer for Holyoke, Massachusetts Mayor Alex Morse, whom he’s been photographing since his first campaign at the age of 22, as well as the event photographer for Mount Holyoke College.
“Having less fatigue helps keep me calm to compose my shots in the seconds before they happen.” Deza uses photography to both connect with people, and immerse himself in his surroundings, seeking to capture a sentiment versus a pose. This means Deza has to live minute to minute and be fully present in the moment, even when things happen unexpectedly–even with great consequences.
“I was in the middle of a wedding in Boston, and I arrived by water taxi with the bride at Columbus Park. My second shooter and my assistant had to drive across Boston, as they had most of the equipment, but they got stuck in traffic. I had only a few minutes to do the first look shoot by myself. Things were crazy! It was about to rain, and I was worried about the hair of the bride getting damaged–especially since I was flying solo.
“Suddenly, this guy with a very humble attitude approached me asking if he could help me adjust my HoldFast camera straps. I said sure, despite the craziness of the moment. I was under pressure because I had only a few moments to capture the first look! While I was doing my thing, the man adjusted my straps. When he was done, we quickly shook hands and I said thank you.
“As I was about to get back to capturing the first look, the man’s wife mentioned to one of the family members of the groom that he owns the company of the product that I was wearing. In that moment, I was speechless, but I had to get back to the shoot.
“This was my five minutes of fame with Matt Swaggart! How many people can say that the owner of HoldFast adjusted their camera straps? Those are the stories you will tell to your kids and grand kids. HoldFast has completely changed my life as a photographer.”