It's not exactly a cheap past time and surprise gifts could be an expensive mistake. Of course you could just ask. Maybe have the photographer in your life draw up a wish list ? With Black Friday and Cyber Monday almost here I thought I might share a few ideas...
Clutch camera hand strap - by Peak Design - £24.99
I've never been a big fan of traditional neck straps but cameras can get heavy, especially with telephoto lens attached and they will give your wrist and grip a work out. Enter the Clutch strap from Peak Design. It's supper comfy with a cool little alloy clip that lets you adjust the grip on the fly. Totally comfy and totally secure. (I totally have one).
Color Checker Passport - X-Rite - £52.00
A must have for any photographer, especially those who do their own prints. X-Rite(website) make a range of calibration devices for your monitor, tablet and even your phone. The Color Checker Passport is the first step in guaranteeing accurate colour reproduction. Place in shot or shoot a separate file with the same lighting. What ever editing software you use you can sample a point on the card and instantly correct the colour temp and white balance and then apply it to all the other shots. The included software can even automate some of the process for you.
Portfolio website - SmugMug
All those fabulous photos getting ruined on Facebook and social media = lots of likes but no sales or jobs ! If only there was an easy way to set up a professional site with a built in print store that you could use to attract paying clients, with lots of design templates, all easily customizable and makes your pictures look awesome ? SmugMug has four price plans but only the Portfolio (£8.23 mth) and Business (16.46 mth) have the print store. If you want to buy this as a gift I suggest a annual subscription, also if you use this link - SmugMug you will get a 25% discount.
Lens - 24-70mm f2.8 Canon - £683.00 used / £1400,00 new
Not a cheap lens (even second hand) but worth the investment, The build, the quality of the glass. The softness of the background when shortening your depth of field. This is the go to lens. Fashion, journalism, headshots, travel, this lens will deliver. It does weigh just shy of 1kg though.
This lens, along with my 85mm f1.8 and 50mm f1.8 is always with me.
Online shop - Wex Photographic
My favourite go to website for buying gear is Wex Photographic. They have a huge range, from entry level to top of the line professional equipment. Delivery times average two or three days.
My favourite part of the site though is their used pages. Whoever writes the product descriptions under sells the quality of the item. I bought a 24-70mm f2.8 that was described as having a few marks and signs of use but when I un-boxed it I could not find a mark on it. The lens was as new but at half it's normal price. Definitely worth a look if you want to upgrade but don't have a large budget.
I might update this as Christmas gets nearer !