Christmas List Ideas 2021 – All Photographers Will Love These GIFTS!
If you have a photographer in the family, you might be wondering what camera-related gifts you can get them. Or you might just be simply looking for a new accessory to make you a gift.
In this video, I picked up some of my favorite photography accessories to create the perfect Christmas List Ideas 2021.
20 lovely gifts that all photographers will love.
PEAK DESIGN CAPTURE CLIP
The Capture Clip by Peak Design is a one-size-fits-all solution for DSLR and mirrorless cameras to safely attach a camera to your belt, backpack, or bag strap. You know how annoying it is to dig into your bag and fish out your camera every time you want to take a shot, especially if you’re shooting a landscape or you’re on the go when traveling. I love this accessory. It’s the ideal hands-free way to always have your camera at the ready.
PEAK DESIGN STRAPS
Peak Design straps are a wonderful accessory a photographer would be happy to have. I have a couple of them, the Slide Lite and the Leash model that it’s the smallest and more compact. It’s almost seat-belt material that feels good on your neck or shoulder and doesn’t get sweaty like thick neoprene straps. The quick-connect system makes it easy to take off the camera if you’re using a tripod, and the best part about them is that you can easily clip or unclip from one camera to another. (If you want to have a look at what I put in my backpack for a landscape photography day-trip, check out this video.
SANDMARC MOTION PRO VARIABLE FILTER
For both photography and video creation, variable neutral density filters are very popular,
and they are used to reduce the amount of light that enters a camera. Variable ND filters allow you to adjust levels of light simply by rotating the outer element of the filter, so you don’t have to keep swapping between individual filters.
The Sandmarc Motion Pro is a 3-6 stop range VND filter, which is quite ideal since 3-6 stops are often the amount of light reduction that allows you to get your shutter speed slow down enough to get ethereal looking water or clouds. It’s perfect for the blue hour when light levels can still be a little too high for ultra-slow shutter speeds.
For videos, it’s very handy to maintain a steady shutter speed to get that wonderful cinematic feel, sometimes difficult to achieve in bright light, even when stopping down the lens to minimum aperture.
The image quality of the Motion Pro is excellent both for video and stills, well built, and it’s the perfect filter for travellers who want the best of both worlds, practicality and image quality.
SMALLRIG FOLDING TOOLSET
This is the tool that you always have to have in your camera bag. It’s a multi-tool from SmallRig with seven different functional tools. It is compact and easy to be carried around, preventing the loss of tiny wrenches and screwdrivers.
This is a real lifesaver for those of us who constantly change our base plate or constantly tighten some of those screws on our rigs, the tripod, and so on.
It’s a fantastic and really affordable gift for every photographer or filmmaker, or anybody that needs a lovely multi-tool instead of using a key or a coin. Highly recommended!
It might not be the most exciting Christmas present under the tree, but an SSD portable hard drive is guaranteed to be the most useful gift you could ever get a photographer.
There are tons on the market, but I love the portable Sandisk SSD driver as an on-the-go external drive. Super small, super reliable for backing up your images and videos when traveling, but it’s also super fast to handle big files on video editing.
The USB 3 port, in fact, helps you achieve quick data transfer with the latest computers, but it’s also backward-compatible with USB 2 types as well.
The Aputure MC is a super-compact RGB light with a heap of really nice features for portable lighting on the fly.
I’ve found it to be a great option to set up quickly for product lighting, portraits, and you need color accuracy when you’re setting up scene lighting.
The build quality of the MC feels premium, with the buttons and controls being responsive. The body is made from a combination of aluminum and plastic with super strong magnets on the back to stick it on any metal surface you want.
You can connect Aputure MC to your phone with the Sidus Link app. Using a smartphone, you have more flexibility in defining colors. You can even pick up a color from the environment and make Aputure reproduce it. The applications are endless!
X-RITE COLOR CHECKER
This is a bit of a special case item, but for portrait and advertising photographers, and also for content creators who want consistent color, the X-Rite ColorChecker Passport is a very useful tool for dealing with tricky lighting conditions. You can use the ColorChecker to create a custom color profile for your camera, or simply to find the right white balance for a scene.
X-RITE i1Display MONITOR CALIBRATOR
The best way to edit color accurately in post-production is to use a device like the X-Rite i1Display to calibrate and profile a monitor for accurate color. This one is a bit more expensive than other options on the market, but I’ve found it to be the most consistent and accurate available at this price range. I think this is a must-have especially for Mac users since this calibrator corrects not just the colors and luminosity, but also the contrast of your monitor.
DEITY D3 SHOTGUN MIC
Even stills-based photographers are shooting a lot of videos these days, and the Deity D3 shotgun mic is a lovely mic with excellent sound quality that will improve dramatically the audio you’re capturing.
This microphone is as simple as it gets; it attaches to your camera’s hot-shoe, or a boom arm, has zero external controls (just the on-off switch), and runs with a single Triple-A battery.
Super easy to connect the input port on your camera using the audio cable that comes with the mic.
The Deity D3 has been my favorite overall shotgun mic for about the last two years. I’m using it to record my voice for all the videos on my channel, and for about one hundred bucks, it’s an excellent gift I highly recommend.
SENSOR CLEANING KIT
Every now and then your camera sensor needs to be cleaned, and one of my favorite tools to clean it is the LED magnifier. It allows you to look down into the camera and magnifies your sensor so you can sit there and literally see the dust particles and everything that’s in and really lets you help pinpoint where you need to clean.
In terms of sensor cleaning, the most popular method is wet sensor cleaning using dedicated sticks and a specific solution to apply to the swabs and literally wipe it across your sensor to clean it. My favorite tools are the VSGO APS-C sensor cleaning swab kit used in combination with the Eclipse Optic Cleaning Fluid.
Another wonderful tool I’ve been using for many years is the Eyelead Gel Sensor Stick, it has no liquid, there’s no wet process with this. This stick has a little piece of gel on the end, and you just stick it onto your sensor and it will pull off all the dust from your camera sensor. Super easy and efficient!
A power bank is a lovely accessory to have with you when traveling, a portable and lightweight battery that packs in 10 thousand milliamp-hour, so it’s good for a day or two on the road. You can charge your camera, your phone, your headphones, really anything you throw at it.
I have been loving this pouch. This is my favorite travel electronics organizer, it is made of waterproof and shockproof nylon material and it is designed with multiple pockets and various sizes of elastic bands providing great flexibility for organizing electronics accessories.
It’s great for chargers, cables, flash drives, small accessories, so basically anything.
If you are looking for cool tech gifts either for you or a photographer friend, this gadget will be a great choice.
K&F Concept Canon FD – Fujifilm FX Converter
The K&F converter is perfect for photographers who are passionate about experimenting with vintage lenses and digital cameras. If you want to use a lens not originally made for your camera, that’s where lens adapters come in! They allow you to use a lens on a camera even when the mounts don’t match.
The mount adapter converter I use allows Canon FD lenses to fit on Fujifilm X-mount Mirrorless cameras.
There is a whole world behind adapters, and this tool can be the right tool to start experimenting with vintage lenses.
K&F CONCEPT – NANO BLACK SOFT DIFFUSION FILTER
This filter is quite amazing. Essentially, the Black Soft Diffusion filter is designed to add some atmosphere into an image. To create this effect K&F Concept has created a coating with lots of random dots of white and black spread across the filter.
I used this filter intensively during my recent trips both for videos and stills and I really enjoyed it. It really helps make digital images look more organic/film-like. It spreads the light around a little, lowering the overall contrast and adding a soft glow to highlights.
If you’re looking for something to lessen that seemingly undefinable “digital look” found in your photographs and videos, then I think this filter is going to be an excellent accessory to have.
LAB BOX – ARSIMAGO
This is hands-down one of my favorite tools for film photography. I participated in the Lab-Box Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign early in 2017, since I found it a great alternative to the standard development tanks. The Lab-Box is a multi-format tank that allows developing film from start to end, in full daylight, bypassing the need to load the rolls in the dark.
It has interchangeable modules to swap between 35mm and 120 formats, a built-in timer and thermometer, and it replaces the tank and dark bag with its two-in-one loader/developer in a small, easy-to-use package.
This system is the perfect choice for a fairly simple film developing tank and I highly recommend it both for beginners and seasoned film shooters.
INSTAX FUJIFILM CAMERA + INSTAX LINK WIDE PRINTER
Any camera lover would appreciate a fun gift like an instant camera. There are lots of reasons to reach for an instant camera.
I’ve been using the SQ6 model for two years. The ability to hand off a photo to someone right after you’ve snapped, or for documenting fun moments during your trips to later create your own photo album stitching all the images by hand, can’t be matched with digital capture.
There’s something about physical prints that makes a greater connection between view and image.
If don’t want to carry an extra camera around, and shoot with your phone or mirrorless camera, then the Instax Link Wide printer might be an amazing alternative. The new Link Wide app is the core of this system, and it’s clean and easy to navigate. You can create single prints, collages, and much other fun stuff.
There are quite a few ways you could use the Link Wide Printer, but in the end, its main goal is fun. It’s not for museum-quality prints; it’s a printer for people who want photographs to be artifacts that exist in the real world.
TK ACTION PANEL
I have been a user of Tony Kuypers luminosity masks for many years, back when they were just actions creating channels.
In my opinion, the TK Panel is the most reliable and powerful panel out there. Tony continues to innovate making the panel faster and more powerful.
I use the latest TK8 panel on most of my images. The main difference compared with some other luminosity masks out there, is that the TK panel creates luminosity masks using Photoshop calculations rather than curves layers, and this does give you much better results, especially for extreme adjustments.
You might be interested in other software I use like Capture One and Adobe Lightroom, here is a video comparison between the two.
An easy, unexpected gift for photographers who already have all the equipment in the world is a smartphone app. There are so many available. One of my favorites ever is Peak Visor that I’ve been using since its beta-version.
This app is ideal for outdoor photographers and I’ve always been impressed with the abilities of this app. It has become my go-to tool for learning about the topography of mountains and trails.
Through augmented reality, it creates a camera 3D panorama overlay, showing you all the info on your surroundings from not only the nearest mountain but also castles, huts, and waterfalls. It identifies mountain elevation, class, and provides lots of additional information.
I enjoy using the teleport feature to see the layout of a specific area. The 3D feature is super useful when you want to find the direction to a trail.
Then the live and picture-based landscape matching is amazing, and I started using quite often the Trail function to track hiking using the smartphone’s GPS.
So, this app is a must-have for any mountain enthusiast.
A high-quality fine art print is one of the easiest and most affordable options to gift a friend. It’s a much better choice than the run-off-the-mill posters from home decor stores. It’s a unique gift and it will continue to please the eye long after being gifted. It’s also a fantastic way to support the work of the photographer you bought it from.
Last but not least, why not gift a great book on self-development? Photographers very easily get lost in the creativity and excitement of creating that they forget some other key factors that can help their professional growth.
One of the key components to help people make any kind of improvement is understanding behavior change.
For many reasons, reading this book resonated with me. Atomic Habits by James Clear is a step-by-step system for creating good habits and breaking bad habits. The purpose is to help you achieve remarkable results in every field more efficiently and methodically.
This is one of the better self-development books that I’ve ever read, and when it comes to building habits, I think this is the best habit-building book on the market. And honestly, I don’t know anyone that would say no to a gift like this.