I have been dreaming of getting this Nomadic messenger bag for sketching materials ever since I saw it on the internet. The messenger bag I'd been using for sketching supplies was a bit larger than what I needed, and had a couple of serious drawbacks that the Nomadic bag addressed. My husband got it for me as a Mother's Day gift, and it is just perfect for my needs! I unpacked my old bag last night and loaded up the new one.
Here's the front of the bag. I selected the blue color, and it's a nice dark, neutral navy. It has a zippered pocket right on the front where you can keep identification, money, or anything you might need to get to quickly without having to open up the whole bag. As you can see, it easily stands upright, which is an important factor for me, since I keep lots of fountain pens inside it.
One thing this bag has that my other lacked is this wide, long shoulder pad. Since the strap adjusts from both sides, I finally have a bag that allows me to shorten the strap enough while keeping the shoulder pad centered. This is an excellent feature that more bags and straps should employ.
On each side, there is a mesh compartment for a water bottle. This particular bottle is oversized at 20 oz, yet still fits in there. A regular 16 oz. bottle would fit better. Not having to carry the water inside the bag is a great feature. It makes it much easier to take a sip while walking without having to open up the bag, or to pour extra water into a palette cup for painting. My old bag didn't have these water holders on the sides.
The bag is divided into two main sides. I set up one for sketching materials, and one for painting. Usually I do one and then the other, so it helps to have my materials organized this way. Here's a peek at the sketching side:
As you can see, there's room straight across the bag for loads of pens, pencils, waterbrushes and markers. A pocket in the front of that compartment can hold my sketchbook. There is another large pocket behind the pens that runs the length of the bag. I keep some tissues, erasers, a ruler, viewfinder, and other sketching supplies in there.
One really neat feature is these mesh pockets because they are translucent. I label all my pens so I can tell what ink is in which pen. I used to have to remove them from the pockets of my old messenger bag to read the labels and find the pen I needed, but now I can store them with the labels facing outward, and I can see what every color is! This is a huge advantage for me and a timesaver.
Turning the bag around and lifting the big flap, you can see into the main compartment of the bag:
If you carry a 9x12" spiral sketchbook, this is where you'll probably be keeping it, and it will fit easily. In front of that large, open area there is a zippered compartment where I keep my watercolor sets:
- Reading glasses
- Extra clips
- Palette cup
- Lots of waterbrushes and travel brushes
- Correction fluid
- Two watercolor sets
- Hand wipes
- Small sketchbook
- Insect repellent
- Date stamp
- Masking tape
- 7x10 watercolor block
- Drawing board
- Paper towels
- Small water bottle
- Garbage bag
If you think you'd like a Nomadic Wise-Walker too, you can find them at Jetpens in black, blue or gray. You can see lots more photos of the bag there as well.