christmas-stockings-fireplaceThere are just seven shopping days left until Christmas.  That can be a stressful countdown especially if you are at a complete loss on what to get the photographer in your life.  A lot of people will be heading out this weekend to pick up those last minute gifts and stocking stuffers.  For some photographer gift ideas under $50 check out my top 5 list.  Time may be running out to do much more online shopping without paying for rush shipping but you can find most of these items in mass retailers or brick and mortar camera stores as well.  If all you need is something small to fill up the stocking hung by the chimney with care of your favorite photographer here are a few ideas for some great smaller gift ideas.

  1. digital-camera-cleaning-kitCamera Cleaning Kit – For under $10 you can pick up a camera cleaning kit that includes all the basics a photographer needs to keep their camera clean and in great working order.  The kits usually include a micro-fiber cloth, lens cleaning tissue, a lens safe cleaning solution and an air brush.  (Never used canned air on your camera – you can damage the sensor – so don’t put a can of that in their stocking)
  2. gorillapod-mini-tripod-camerasGorilla Pod – This is gorilla in the urban sense more so than the jungle animal.  A gorillapod is a small tri-pod with flexible legs that can be bent and formed to attach it to almost any surface.  They are light weight and easy to carry in your camera bag.  When you can’t have your full size tri-pod with you but want to capture a perfect slow shutter speed shot one of these is a great substitute that can get the job done.  You can pick one up for under $20 usually depending on the brand.
  3. popular-photography-magazineMagazine Subscriptions – Yes, people do still read magazines and there are some great photography magazines out there.  Check out for a great selection of photography magazines.  This is one gift you can shop for right up to the last minute without having to get up from your desk.  If you are at a complete loss as to which magazine your photographer might like there are a few stand by photography magazines that are almost always a safe bet.  You generally can’t go wrong with Popular Photography.  If they love photographing nature and landscapes Outdoor Photographer is a great choice.  For the more artistic photographer try a subscription to B & W or American Photo.  A little shopping around online can get you a gift that keeps on giving all year long for no more than $30 on the high end.
  4. booksBooks – The beginning photographer or even the more experienced amateur photographer can never have too many photography books in my opinion.  The options are limitless in this category.  From photography how-to books to books featuring the works of noted photographers there is something for everyone.  For a very good how to manual I suggest Tom Ang’s Digital Photography Masterclass.  For someone with a new camera or even someone who has had their camera a while an excellent compliment to the camera’s manual are the Magic Lantern Guides.  These are well written camera manuals on steroids that you will be hard pressed to find a camera make or model that Magic Lantern does not have a guide for.   Alternatively,  find out your photographer’s favorite genre of photography and get them a photo essay book that features that genre.
  5. camera-lens-hoodAccessories – There are a lot of little camera accessories that you can get your photographer.  In some cases you will need to know some details about their camera to make sure you match up sizing and what not.  But if you know the make and model as well as the lens sizes you should be good to go.  A lens hood, like the one on the right, is used to block glare and lens flare.  You will need to know the diameter of the lens to make sure you get one that fits.  Other camera accessory options would be a lens cap strap for the photographer prone to misplacing their lens caps.  Or a new strap for the camera itself can be a great way to personalize a camera.

Happy Shopping!

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