That's me getting ready to spend a day out in the rain taking pictures on my expedition to find banana slugs. But how to keep my camera dry without buying a camera rain cover at retail prices? I found a tutorial online at Purple Summit Photography and modified their design just a bit.
This is all you'll need. A plastic bag, your lens hood, a Sharpie, a pair of scissors and some electrical tape. I used red for this tutorial so it would have better contrast than black tape. The entire process should take less than five minutes to complete.
Step 1: Begin by folding the bag down half way so you can flatten the bottom against your table or countertop and reach inside easily.
Step 2: Align the lens hood so that the center bottom seam of the plastic bag is right in the middle of your lens hood.
Step 3: Use the Sharpie to create an outline around the opening of the lens hood drawing around the inner edge that snaps onto the camera, not the outer edge, as your guide.
Step 4: Your plastic bag should look like this. Cut the circle out with a small pair of scissors.
Step 5: If you want to keep the Zip Loc bag in your camera bag for "just-in-case," store it with a thick rubber band, like the thick blue one you get when you buy a bunch of celery, and slip the rubber band over the bag and lens to hold it in place. It's quick and easy when you get caught in a sudden cloud burst.
If you'll be spending an entire day out in the rain use tape. Slip the lens hood into the bag with the side that fits to your camera inside the bag so that when you attach your camera to the hood it'll be inside the bag. Begin taping the plastic bag to the hood. Whatever the thickness of your electrical tape space the bag and lens hood so that half the tape is covering the plastic and half is on the lens hood.
Step 6: If your lens hood is round this step is not necessary, but my macro lens is rectangular so I wanted to be sure to align it with the bag:
Now slide your camera, with the lens attached into the plastic bag and snap it to the lens hood making sure to align the camera and plastic bag before taping the rest of the bag down. Push the lens through the opening and continue easing the plastic bag around the hood as you tape it into place. It will be snug so you'll have to stretch the plastic just a tiny bit to get it to fit properly.
Step 7: Once the plastic bag is taped down to the hood cut the electrical tape and you're done!
It folds up small so drop it in your camera bag and bring it out as needed. Just slide your camera into the bag when the rain starts. It'll keep it nice and dry. Just be sure to protect your camera and lens from stray drops of water when switching lenses in the rain.
After, be sure to remove the tape asap so that the adhesive doesn't get stuck to your lens hood. I took mine off and saved the bag so the next time I need a rain cover all I'll need is a few inches of tape to reuse it.
You can see lots of pictures of the park and slugs at this link: Where to find Banana Slugs in the Santa Cruz Mountains