So, What Do You Buy a Photographer For The Holidays?

holgacollegeblog.pngHave a photographer in your family? Dating a photographer? Have no idea what to get them that doesn’t cost as much as a black market kidney? Look no further, for here is a list of some on a budget things your photographer will love!

Under $100 (Affordable, attainable)

1. The Ollo Clip  – $69.00
This little gadget is super cool, I’ve referenced it in many of my posts. It’s a 4-in-1 lens attachment for the iPhone! It transforms ho-hum cell phone photos into little works of art. You get a fisheye lens, a wide angle lens, a 15x macro and a 10x macro. To see examples of what it can do, click here and here.

2. Polaroid 300 Instant Camera – $70.00
The new age Polaroid! The photos are wallet sized and have pretty awesome color rendition. The Polaroid and Fuji versions of the instant camera are exactly the same, so chose whichever one has the best colors in stock.

3. Colored Filters for Camera Lens – $30.00
I bought these awhile back for my lens for my film camera and had a lot of fun playing with them! They definitely spice up and inspire the creativity of a photographer’s workflow. To see what they do, please visit this post and this post.

4. Clip on Microfiber Cleaning Cloth – $5.00
A god send when your lens is dirty and you need something to clean it off with that isn’t the scratchy wooly sweater you’re wearing. They just clip right onto a camera bag.

5. Holga 120mm Plastic Camera – $25.00
Support film! This little guy is a lot of fun to shoot with when you want that dreamy, lomo look. I have this along with the flash accessory ($13) and colored gels. To see what the results are from this camera, see here.

6. Camera Strap – $6.00 or Vintage Camera Strap (varies but usually anywhere from $5 to $35)
Everyone needs some flair in their gear. I bought a camera strap from this eBay based company a few months ago and I fell in love with it. I didn’t think I’d trust my $4100 camera to a $2 strap but damn if that thing isn’t resilient.

7. Kodak Portra Film ($36 for a set of five rolls of 35mm with 36 exposures) or Fuji Superia Film ($3 per roll of 36 exposures)
Buy film and support the film industry! If your friend doesn’t shoot film, now is the time to get them to start.

8. Canon Wireless Control Remote – $20
This helps make long exposures easy as well as self portraits.

9. Vello Off-Camera Flash Cord for Canon – $15.00
This thing attaches to an external flash and the flash mount of the camera allowing the photographer to have more control of where the flash hits. Conductive to light painting and event photography.

10. Impact 42″ 5-in-1 Collapsible Reflector – $46.00
A giant disc that reflects available light into the subject. The disc folds up into this awesome little bag so it’s great for on-location shoots. You get a silver side, a gold side, a white side, and a diffuser in the mix. I have it and I love it.

11. Watson 8-Battery Rapid Charger – $38.00 and 8 Pack of AA Rechargeable Batteries – $18.00
Not for cameras (unless you’re using automatic 35mm flash point and shoots) but for the external flashes that require AA batteries. Before I got these I blew through batteries like it was no one’s business. These last FOREVER on a charge and it’s a small price to pay in the long run when regular batteries are $10 per pack.

12. VSCO Cam Software for Photoshop CC, CS6 or Lightroom – $101.00 (ok, ok it’s a dollar over the $100)
This is what I use to edit most of my work. They are photoshop presets that give off the “look” of film. While I don’t think that it really looks like film, I do love the way it makes my photos look. I own packs 1 and 4.

13. ScanDisk Extreme Pro 32GB Memory Card – $41
Every photographer always needs more memory cards.

14. Magnus PV-7450M Tripod – $60.00
A tripod! For portraits, long exposures, landscapes, etc.

15. Rain Sleeve – $4 for Two-Pack
Every photographer needs a few of these in their camera bags to protect their body and lenses from rain, dust, snow, etc.

16. Glass Diana DSLR Lens – $60.00
Its the lens used on the popular 120mm film Diana camera, just made for a digital body!

17. DIY Twin Lens Camera  Kit – $17.00
You literally build a little TLR camera. We have it, Andrew built in it like, two hours. Yes, it works.

18. Canon A-1 in Excellent Condition – $99.00 + Canon f/1.8 50mm lens – $56.00
This is my go-to film camera. It’s 35mm and works like a charm. I typically have the 50mm lens on it.

19. Set of Three Organizer Pouches – $30.00
Keeps film rolls, memory cards, tiny phone lenses and other littles in a safe spot in camera bags.

20. A print from ME! – $75
Selling prints of my concert work, landscape work and my street photography. Visit my website for more info 🙂

Under $300 (Ohh, have some money to spend, eh?)

1. Canon 430exII Speedlite  – $250.00
The external flash I currently use. There are newer versions, but this one is awesome.

2. ONA Bowery Camera Bag – $129.00
SO CUTE. I have the larger version of this ($279.00) but this one is large enough to hold one camera body and one lens. Perfect for wandering around with minimal gear. ONA has some amazing quality bags, worth the price.

3. Epson V600 Photo Film Scanner – $205.00
Scans 35mm, medium format, documents, photos, butts, hands, faces, you name it.

4. Camera Insurance – $110.00 (StateFarm)
I’m being serious about this one. That price is for just under $10,000 worth of gear to be insured under full coverage under a personal property policy. I know because I have it. If your friend or loved one has all this expensive gear and you don’t know what to get them, PAY FOR AN INSURANCE POLICY FOR THEM. Best thing ever if their camera bag gets stolen, run over, caught on fire, drowned or all of the above.

5. GoPro Hero 3 – $240.00
A camera that records video, takes photos, goes underwater and can basically go anywhere you go.

Big Ticket Items (You fancy.)

1. Canon 16-35mm f/2.8 l Lens – $1800.00
My absolute favorite lens, worth every penny. You can get them for cheaper (or pricier) depending upon where you look.

2. Canon 50mm f/1.2 l Lens – $1600.00
Another beautiful lens, one I don’t have in my arsenal just yet.

3. Phantom 2 Photo Drone – $1300.00
It’s an airplane. With a camera.

4. LC-A 120 – $430.00
A automatic, point and shoot medium format film camera.

Still Stumped? (No worries, Giftcards are here!)
It’s not easy to find gifts for people when you know nothing about their hobbies. I don’t blame all you non-photogs out there for being absolutely clueless to the things I’ve listed here. To help, here are several websites were gift cards can ALWAYS be used.


No, this isn’t a sponsored post. I recommend all of these products because I own 95% of them and I love them. The other 5% I would purchase (and will probably end up doing so). Happy shopping and you can do all this from safely behind your computer screen – no crowd stampedes for you. 

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