10 Christmas Gift Ideas for the Photographer in your Life!
It is beginning to look a lot like Christmas… music everywhere, my wife has made me help decorate the house with a billion flashing lights, the Christmas tree is up and the shopping centres are full of crazy people trying to find the perfect gift, yup, it’s that time of year again. If you’re scratching your head wondering what Christmas Present to get the budding photographer in your life this list may just be what you’re looking for! Every photographer can always do with more gear, it doesn’t matter what they already have, more gear is always good! I have compiled a short list of goodies ranging in price that will suit you no matter what your budget is.
Every photographer takes a lot of photos, and most never make it further than Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram. There is nothing more exciting to a photographer than to see one of their photos printed, and this is one of those cases where bigger is better! I would suggest checking out your local canvas printing shop, there are plenty online too! And if you cannot get your hands on one of their photos to print in time for Christmas, just buy them a printing voucher so they can then choose what photo and what size they want it printed.
2. Specialised Camera Strap
One of the most important part of any photographers kit is their camera strap. The stock standard strap that comes with every camera is nothing more than an advertisement for the camera manufacturer. There are a couple of options for you when it comes to straps. Firstly, you could order a customised strap from somewhere like Lucky Camera Straps, I have one of these straps and wrote a review on their straps you can read here. Another great option is a Blackrapid strap, these are extremely popular as they make carrying a camera around all day more comfortable. I also have a review about the Blackrapid strap here you can read.
3. More Memory
Photography can be an expensive hobby, well, okay, it IS an expensive hobby! One of the incidental costs for every photographer is memory cards, these are the small cards we stick into our camera that our photos are stored on. They come in a couple of varieties so you want to make sure you get the right one. Most later model cameras will take an SD card, and older will take a CF card, so make sure you check out what model camera they have before buying a memory card, another awesome option is a portable hard drive, a 1TB or 2 TB of extra storage is real handy for the modern day photographer.
4. Panoramic Head
Just about every photographer would like to take better panoramic images, and the way to do this is to use a Panoramic Head. There are several of these available on the market, my only word of caution is to steer clear of the cheap ones on eBay as the quality will not be good and this will make it harder than not using one at all. I got mine from Really Right Stuff and can highly recommend their gear.
5. Bags and Cases
You may be thinking ‘but they already have a bag’, true… but just like handbags, each camera bag will serve a different purpose. There are roller bags for travelling, this would be ideal for the travelling photographer, or maybe a backpack with a hydration insert is what you need. There are many different styles and types of bags available. You could always just grab a small lens pouch or a hard case to store memory cards. Any of these would be happily received by your much loved photographer.
You must really love your photographer friend if you’re thinking about buying them a lens for Christmas! Lenses can range from several hundred dollars to several thousand. There isn’t a photographer on the planet that wouldn’t be super stoked with getting a new lens for Christmas. You will want to check with them first so you get the right type, different lenses fit different cameras and you want to make sure you get the right one, you may be able to just find out their wish list of lenses so you can just pick one. Another good tip is to get a gift voucher for your local camera store, this way they can buy their own lens.
7. Tripods and Monopods
No photographers kit is complete without a sturdy tripod (or two). Even if you know they already have a tripod, maybe they need a Travel Tripod, these are much smaller and lighter making it easy for travel. There’s also a chance that their current tripod is old and flimsy, you’ll be a superstar come Christmas morning when they open your gift and it’s a new sturdy tripod, carbon fibre is a plus here too, if you have the budget and you want to be really popular. Another option is to buy a Monopod. Monopods are basically a one legged tripod, great for shooting sport or when doing a lot of walking about and you don’t want to carry a tripod but still want some way of stabilising the camera.
8. Photography Workshop
There are plenty of options when it comes to workshops. Everything from 2 to 3 hour local workshops to multi day Photography Tours in exotic locations. Quite often workshop companies will have gift vouchers or the ability to switch into another workshop if needed, just in case you pick an unsuitable date or workshop. There is plenty to learn about in photography and photographers love to get together and talk photography, so this is a guaranteed winner!
9. Lens Rental Voucher
Lenses are expensive, I covered that off in point 6. Besides coming up with thousands of dollars to buy a lens, you could buy a lens rental gift voucher instead, this way, your photographer friend can rent something to try out. Most lens rental companies will let you pick just about any amount, so this one should suit your budget no matter what. Every photographer would appreciate being able to try out a lens or two from a lens rental company. If you’re in Australia, you can get one from my online Lens Rental store Oz Lens Rental.
10. Cleaning Equipment
Camera and Lenses need to be cleaned. There is a stack of options when it comes to cleaning kits, but I would steer clear of the cheap kits and focus on finding something of better quality. For example, a good quality Rocket Blower or a Sensor Cleaning Kit, there are Sensor stamps, brushes and swabs to choose from. If you’re really stuck and on a lower budget, a good quality microfibre lens cloth never goes astray.
Okay, I know I said 10 gift ideas, but I just thought of this one so we’ll count this as a bonus gift idea! Photographers use some kind of software to process their digital files, and the most popular software is Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop. You could give them a subscription to this for Christmas, if they already have this software then you could get them some plugins or presets. Topaz Labs make a bunch of plugins, if you decide to get them Topaz Labs Plugins use THIS LINK and THIS COUPON CODE: on3legs and you’ll get 15% off. Another cool bit of software is Photomatix, it is HDR Software and you can get this from www.hdrsoft.com, use the coupon code” on3legs and you’ll save 15%.
12. a t-shirt
Happy Christmas Shopping!
Let me know what you thought about my 11 ideas and what Christmas Present you ended up buying the photographer in your life by leaving a comment below. I would love to hear from you!