First look on the new MrJan Gear backpack: Rise

Tuomas is a MrJan Gear ambassador

Rise is smaller than Boris, but it’s made for completely other purposes

The official name of the backpack on the website is Rise and Shine: Wake up and grab your gear. It strongly points at the best moment in a nature photographers day – sunrise. And in Finland that means hard times during the summer.

Officially it is called the Rise & Shine: Wake up and grab your gear.

Rise is a 20 litre sized bag with a very minimalistic design. There aren’t many pockets and the look isn’t tactical, it’s smooth with a beautiful finish. That is what makes it so interesting right from the first touch.

14" Lenovon työkone mahtuu juuri ja juuri. Ei hölsky.

For what purpose?

For me, Rise will be a bag that I grab when I don’t need to haul the larger tele lenses such as the 400mm 2.8 lens or I don’t have the need to carry it in a backpack. The other use will be wedding photography and other that type gigs where the huge backpack might be a little impractical. Third use will be for work, it fits a laptop and other stuff leaving room for lunchbox and clothes.


Build of the backpack

Rise consist of three departments and additional accessories that can be attached outside of the bag. There’s a small pocket on the top where you can fit your phone, keys, hand sanitizer and other small things.  Inside the pocket you’ll find a strap with a quick lock to attach your keys to so they won’t fall out when digging for other stuff.

Back side compartment is a slim laptop pocket so it’s a space designed for any slimmer items. For example it fits a Lenovo 14,4” laptop (I have the model nr E945, if you want to google the measurements). That is about the maximum size the pocket holds. Pocket is cushioned so it provides protection for a laptop. You can also store other items there, consider that they might make it uncomfortable to hold against your back if they are too big.

Last but not least, the main compartment. It can be modified for every users needs with the straps and partitions that come with the purchase of the bag.  With the you can divide the inside in different ways to fit your gear and accessories as you wish.

On the front and side of the bag there are laser cut slits where you can attach gear with straps. For example tripod, bean bags, jacket or any other gear you need to have with you. The silts are very durable and wont tear or break in use even with heavier attachments. I asked about them when I first bought my Boris backpack and found out they tried to break them in many ways in testing and didn’t succeed.


velcrotaskuja repussa

The very handy Velcro pockets

Everything comes down to these little convenient helpers. In every MrJan Gear backpack the Velcro pockets have a big role in organizing and keeping your accessories in order. They come in two sizes, big and small. They come in different quantities when purchasing different backpacks, Rise comes two small ones, one containing a rain cover for the bag. They can also be bought separately in two large ones or three small ones sets. I can’t imagine ever giving these up, they are so convenient.

I have purchased them separately to have more of them and have different pocket for different accessories. I grab the ones that I need with me in different occasions. We have everything from playing cards and yatzy game stored in them when we travel.  You can attach these everywhere that the Velcro sticks (the rough side). Insides of car trunks are usually made from such material, so we have some attached there also. In the Rise backpack you can attach them in the back or inside walls of the main compartment.

I highly recommend!

Separately sold Velcro sets from MrJan Gear webshop:


Rise has four different straps or belts for carrying. The shoulder straps are very soft and comfortable even with a heavier load. * Both chest- and waist belts are adjustable. The waist belt can be removed completely which is a very good thing. It is often useless with a small backpack and hangs around unnecessarily. But it’s good to have as an option when cycling for example. There’s also a handle on top of the bag that you can lift it from.

*On a wedding photography gig I managed to fit in the backpack with all of this: Canon 1Dx2 and EOS R bodies and following lenses: EF 24 1.4 L II, , EF 35 1.4 L, 50 1.4 ART, EF 85 1.8, 150 2.8 macro and a  16-35 2.8 L II. And batteries and memory cards too.



I will have lots of use for this type of a backpack this size. I have a black one but you can also buy it in blue and orange.


Rise in MrJan Gear webshop





Product info

We took some time to find out what we were looking for in a smaller pack. There is plenty of choice in this area of 20-litre backpacks. And how could we manage to give it all of our key features without making just a baby brother for our big packs?
We ended up with the design of a roomy daypack, fully padded to protect your photographic equipment but not meant to be a photo backpack pur-sang. It would be nice to use it for commuting to your work, carrying your paperwork, laptop and lunch. Or take it for a short walk with your camera, and jacket, a small tripod and a healthy meal. We ended up with an 18-litre design – a kind of one-size-fits-all – that we think of as the golden ratio for a daypack.

Of course, the pack is opening on the back-side to keep the carrying system clean. A small (and removable) waistbelt/strap is keeping things in place when bending over or biking a bumpy road.

We produce the Rise in three bright colours: black, orange and blue, tough and waterproof 600 denier oxford polyester. Every pack comes with a set of dividers, a set of velcro pouches and a rain cover with a retro-reflecting logo for extra safety on the road. The set of straps can be used to attach your jacket or tripod to the outside, using the laser-cut slits. Lasercutting and laminating makes the packs more waterproof than stitches and gives the bags their distinctively clean look.

Rise in MrJan Gear webshop


Writer is a MrJan Gear ambassador