10 Best Gifts for Photographers
If there’s a photographer on your holiday gift list, you’re in the right place. I know how tricky it can be to shop for a visually creative friend or family member, so here are a few gift ideas to get you started. The list is by no means exhaustive, but as a photographer myself, I’m attracted to presents that are useful, clever, inspiring, or some combination thereof. Happy perusing!
1. MasterClass with Annie Leibovitz
See the world through the eyes of this world-renowned portrait photographer. In a 15-video class (3 hours total), Annie teaches how to develop concepts, work with subjects, shoot with natural light, and bring images to life in post-production. You’re sure to wow your favorite photographer with this one. Buy here.
2. McKinnon Camera Sling Bag
This sling bag is perfect when a photographer wants to travel light. The durable, water-resistant construction comfortably stores a mirrorless or small DSLR and an extra lens, while organizing pockets hold memory cards and camera batteries. The one-handed latch system allows easy one-handed access to gear. There are even external molle hooks for extra gear and the bag can be worn three different ways. Buy here.
3. David LaChapelle / Fotografiska NYC
Here’s one way to send a jolt of inspiration through your favorite photographer’s soul: Tickets to David La Chapelle’s much anticipated “Make Believe” exhibit at Fotografiska in New York City. This is his first big solo show in North America, with over 150 works museum-wide, including his most iconic along with new images. Buy here.
4. Lume Cube 2.0 Waterproof LED
Portable lighting is a game-changer. With the Lume Cube 2.0 LED, on-the-go photographers don’t have to worry about plugging in hardware while on a shoot. It’s feature-packed: waterproof to withstand the elements, Bluetooth-controlled, two-button system to increase or decrease brightness, low-light mode, and a 360° optical sensor for flash photography. Buy here.
5. Warm Stretchy Gloves
Save the chunky mittens for your kids. Photographers work with their hands as much as their eyes, so they need the dexterity of these Freehands Power Stretch Gloves. The outer layer is wind-resistant while the soft inner layer wicks moisture from the skin. Snug but not restrictive, these gloves are breathable with four-way stretch. Special silver-plated polyamide fingertips let photographers use a touchscreen and small buttons without removing the gloves. Buy here.
6. Aerial Drones
From real estate to film and TV, drones are revolutionizing the world of photography. Advanced technology is making them safer, smarter, and easier to use. There’s a huge range of options, but to get you started, we’ll share a couple of our favorites. The DJI Air 2S ($999 on Amazon) has advanced intelligence and tracking features, plus the ability to perceive its surroundings up, down, forward, and backward. For the money, we also appreciate the Parrot Anafi ($369 on Amazon) for its light, compact frame that unfolds in under three seconds with up to 25 minutes of filmed flight time.
7. Camera Harness
As photographers know, a typical camera strap takes a toll on one’s neck after a while. That’s why we appreciate this harness, which distributes camera weight, adds stabilization, and has two small pockets to boot. The quick-release buckles make it quick and easy to attach and detach the camera body. Choose from six designs. Buy here.
8. Artie Leather Weight
Anyone who’s tried to hold down a print while mounting it for framing knows you can’t just grab random objects to do the job, or you risk scratching the print. Enter the Artie Leather Weight, featuring our famed panda mascot. Heavy enough to keep prints in place, but covered in soft, non-abrasive leather to protect the art. Priced low enough to buy a set of four and cover every corner. Buy here.
9. Professional Picture Frames
You might assume that photographers would have dozens of frames lying around. But often they’re too busy finding new clients, creating art, retouching photos, and making prints. The sad result is their beautiful images don’t get displayed. You can save the day with hand-crafted, ready-made frames to get them started in the new year. If you’re not sure which types of frames they like, they can choose their favorites with a Lens Lover Gift Card. Buy here.
10. Archival Photo Storage Boxes
Most of a photographers’ work lives in digital form on their computers. But some images we are compelled to print and display. A good museum-quality storage box keeps photographic prints protected in that (sometimes lengthy) interval between printing and framing. Available in an array of sizes from 8”x10” to 22"x30”. Buy here.
I hope you’re inspired to shop with confidence for the holidays and beyond. Feel free to add your own ideas in the comments below!
NOTE: You may also enjoy Best Gifts for Artists and Best Gifts for Creative People.
Last Updated September 27, 2022