Finding Christmas and Birthday Gift Ideas for Photographers can be a frustrating task unless you are armed with my Photographer gift ideas for photographers tools, checklists, and suggestions based on my own shopping experience, and as the receiver of Christmas and birthday photography gifts for many years!
Technology changes so fast, and if you’re not a photographer it’s doubly hard to know what to buy. But you are going to be a shopping superstar in 2011. I’ve assembled a Christmas and holiday season shopping list of the coolest, most desired and some very unique gift ideas for photographers – in all budget ranges so you can delight the photographer in your life this holiday season.
Photography Gear, best photography books, digital cameras, photography gadgets – I think I have it all covered! I know for sure that I would love to receive any of these items so I’m not recommending them “just because!” But rather because I know that your photographer will be surprised, excited and wowed by your thoughtfulness. And these are current for this year too!
So enjoy reading through the many Christmas and birthday gift ideas for photographers, below, and be sure to download the Christmas and Birthday Gift Ideas for Photographers checklist, you can print it out and take it with you as you’re browsing through your local photography shop. But better yet, thing about shopping online. I’ve also listed the best online camera shops, and photography equipment stores so you don’t have to worry about buying camera equipment online.
These are tiny video/still cameras for the active photographer and extreme sports enthusiast. I’m not a super extreme sports person, but I do enjoy mountain biking and more recently hang gliding, which could be called an extreme sport! Check out my GoPro hang gliding video here.
But even if your photographer is into tennis hockey, skiing, snow boarding, skate boarding, water skiing, etc they will totally appreciate this little wearable camera which documents their sports and outdoors events in HD quality. It is also an amazing time lapse photography camera, and because it’s enclosed in a waterproof weather-proof housing, your photographer can set it up outdoors and capture stunning time lapses of the night sky, flowers opening, activities over time in any environment.
This was the main reason I bought mine, but I came to also love it for the HD video.
If your photographer already has a GoPro® HD he or she will definitely want some of the cool accessories that are available. These are relatively inexpensive so if you have a budget this year, you’ll still be able to delight without getting a bank loan!!
My favorites are the tripod mount, the chest strap (to wear the camera around your chest, when a helmet just won’t work), the new LCD back so you can see what you are shooting to set up your composition and framing, the battery extension back.
This is a very cool but extremely useful specialty camera lens for all photographers with DSLR cameras. When in tight spots and small enclosed spaces, they will be able to see the entire space. Nature photographers like it for caves, forests, and wide view landscapes photography. If you don’t know how flexible and creative this little lens is check out my How to be creative with a wide angle lens tutorial.
It’s not a cheap Christmas or holiday gift, but if your photographer has a lot of lenses but not at super wide fisheye they will adore you for getting them this. Here are a few types of fisheye lenses for your photographer:
Tele converter make a lens more powerful by extending the focal length. If you’re not a photographer that probably means nothing to you, but if the photographer on your list has a 100mm lens, the 2x tele converter will make it a 200mm lens.
For a tiny investment, the photographer gets the equivalent of 2 lenses! The tele extender will work on most any lenses too, so you needn’t worry if the extender will fit, just make sure the one you buy is designed for the make of camera your photographer has. If s/he’s a Nikon DSLR shooter, get her a Nikon extender or one with a Nikon mount.
I use the Nikon 1.78X tele-extender, it’s about half the cost of a 2X tele-extender but gives almost as much power. Plus it lets in more light so the shutter speeds can be faster in lower light situations. If you don’t know what that all means, it really is just that your photographer will be able to use the lens and extender in more environments without using a flash. And most of us nature photographer don’t really like using the flash.
If you read any of my website pages, you know I’m a big fan of tripods – they help you extend your shooting time and diversify your shooting locations by allowing you to use slow shutter speeds for all sorts of special effects as well as to use the sweet light of dawn and dusk to make dramatic photos.
A mini tripod is very small, fits on a table or car hood or roof and can easily go in the photographers gadget bag without adding any significant weight. What a great gift!
I really like my gorrilapod mini tripod – they are funky looking but work! It has bendy legs that allow it to wrap around all kinds of obstacles and structures. Awesome for nature and infrared photography!
Camera beanbags are a bit like the mini tripods but are in some ways easier to use. They are really beanbags of a certain shape and size and are used to pro the camera on a rock or other irregularly shaped surface.
They are very popular for wildlife photography especially on safaris where you have to stay in a vehicle to take your photos. See the LensCoat SkimmerSack Camera Beanbag as an example.
If you are into making your own gifts for photographers, you can easily make your own camera beanbag, with fabric chosen especially for your photographer! How cool is that. Click here (coming soon) to see some patterns that you can download for a custom DIY camera beanbag. Your photographer will cry with joy and emotion knowing you crafted something totally unique just for them with your own hands. Camera beanbags are wonderfully thoughtful gift ideas for photographers.
Many photographers love to shoot in the rain or other wet weather. It’s not that we are gluttons for punishment, but rather, some of the best and most dramatic photos are made in turbulent weather – think thunderstorms, lightning, hail, wind etc. But water is a camera’s worst enemy – fortunately there are a variety of camera covers that enable a photographer to shoot clear and brilliant photos without getting the lens or the camera wet. Here are a few of my favorites: