2018 Affordable Holiday Gifts for the Photographer


Buying a gift for the photographer in your life – whether that’s you or somebody else – can be a harrowing task and if you’re not prepared, very costly. Ask them directly what they want and you will probably get a response like, “a new 400mm lens, please with IS” or “don’t spend much on me, but I would like a new medium format camera body with a few primes…”. But, don’t be discouraged; there are loads of accessories out there for the photographer in your life that won’t break the bank. Here are a few choice picks, even if some are just stocking stuffers.

Camera Lens Thermos

$18.99 from Amazon

You don’t have to be content with the same old boring coffee mug when you can have one shaped like your favorite camera lens. The one pictured here is a Canon EF 24-105mm f/4 L (without IS), but if you check out some of the listings under the ‘Customers also shopped for’ section, you can find ones from Nikon and other lens types, like a 70-200mm for when you get that extra bit thirsty. The lid is also conveniently shaped to hold a cookie or two. It’s also a very quick way to expand your lens collection and make people at the camera club extra jealous.

Kodak Ektar 100 Film

$22.49 from Amazon

Once discontinued, Kodak is now once again shipping their E100 color reversal film available in 35mm format. The film is ISO 100 and has 36 exposures per roll. It’s a good choice for general-purpose use for anything from portrait to landscapes with rich colors and realistic skin tones. Even if buying a roll is a nostalgic way to dip your toe into the old film days, this could be a nice little gift.

HEYFAIR Novelty Camera Roll Toilet Paper Cover

$12.99 from Amazon

This is just genius. The tissue box holder is in the shape of an old camera film roll that can hold a normal sized toilet paper roll. The paper spools out just like old style film and can be mounted horizontally to fit in any bathroom. Comes in a few different variations. This should be a prerequisite in any photographer’s home.

WhiBal G7 White Balance Pocket Card

$19.95 from Amazon

A grey card is something every photographer should have in their kit bag. Even if you own something like a Datacolor SpyderCheckr, everybody should appreciate a small white/grey card as a gift. This example has a neutral 18 percent Grey Card and layard which can easily fit in your pocket for convenience. This one says that it is scratch, fade and water resistant, which means it should hopefully last you for years.

GorillaPod 3k

$32.95 from Amazon

A Joby’s GorillaPod is one very convenient and handy little tripod, first introduced in 2006. The ability to wrap its legs around other objects as well as being a stand-alone tripod makes this little unit extremely versatile. This version can support up to 6.6lb/3kg and is 9.4in/24cm tall – good enough for a decent sized DSLR and lens. There are also plenty of accessories you can buy, such as a mini ball head to extend its functionality. With rubberized rings and foot grips, this thing should give you years of use.

Kata KT DL-L-441 DL LITE Shoulder Bag

$29.99 from Amazon

I have a personal liking for Kata camera bags. I still have one that I use every day, which I bought 15 years ago and still looks virtually brand-new. It is built like a tank and all the compartments can be rearranged to your liking. This shoulder bag has the same idea with a distinctive yellow interior and a thoroughly well-thought-out design. The bag is small enough to be used as a day pack, has loads of protection and is available at a reasonable price. Quality and price is a good match indeed.

LenzBuddy Lens Caps

$9.97 from Amazon

Always carry spares. LenzBuddy produces a variety of lens caps fitting different filter threads, with one of the standout features being the focal length printed on the front to easily identify each one. This is a great feature when you need to grab one at speed, while rummaging through your camera bag. If you order any from their website, you can also have your name printed on the cap.

Altura Photo Professional Cleaning Kit

$12.99 from Amazon

Keeping your camera gear clean and beautiful is a prerequisite. This little kit has everything you need to keep everything clean and tidy on your camera and, especially, lens. Included is a Altura Photo Lens Cleaner 2oz. bottle, a lens cleaning pen, a brush, air blower, 50 sheets of camera cleaning tissue paper and microfiber cloths. The lens cleaner is said to be safe to be used on multi-coated lenses and LCD screens, but not the sensor. The microfiber sheets should also be safe to be used on all types of lenses.

Brian May Owl Stereoscopic VR Viewer!

$38.95 from Amazon

Yes, its true Brian May isn’t just the guitarist of Queen, he also has his own VR Viewer harking back to the origins of photography itself. This optical wonder can be used with any type of smartphone where you can use a variety of apps to produce stereoscopic images – maybe even of Queens seminal Live Aid performance to view in 3D. Even today, stereoscopic images look fantastic and this little device will give you an idea of what has fascinated both children and adults alike for decades. Unfortunately, the product doesn’t come with Brain’s rather fetching red top.

Hopefully, the above will give you some inspiration and selections for photography gifts that won’t break the bank this holiday season. Happy holidays and happy shopping!

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