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While budget gifts for camera buffs can seem few and far between, there are a few gems that can make some of the best presents. I don’t know about anyone else, but I absolutely love receiving anything book related at Christmas time. There’s something about taking the gift wrap away to reveal a book that is accompanied by a warm fuzzy feeling.
Life On Instagram Unlike any other Instagram book I’ve come across, Life on Instagram has no narrative, no guide and no mention of an algorithm (hallelujah). It’s a coffee table style book that focuses solely on the real-life side of the platform, a collection of images taken in 2017 that capture a fleeting moment. There is nothing groundbreaking here, but it is an ode to the platform and a lovely book to flick through.
Read This If You Want To Take Great Photographs Navigating a camera at first can be like navigating Nova Scotia, without a map, blindfolded (I’m assuming Nova Scotia is difficult to navigate here, I’ve never actually been). I learn something knew about my camera every day, but I’ve found that getting my head around the basic settings made a monumental difference. This book is a compact run through of all of the fundamentals behind photography, nothing too scary, nothing too overwhelming, but enough to open your eyes to the amazing difference having a clue what your doing can make to your images. What better gift could you give.
Capture By Lucy Backdrops For those of us not blessed with beautiful marble surfaces or rustic wooden floors, photography backdrops can be a more convenient option than an entire home makeover. I do not do a lot of product photography or flatlays, but if I did, Capture By Lucy Backdrops would be my go-to. The quality of these are second to none, while I was guilty of stealing a wallpaper sample (or ten) from B&Q, making the investment into quality backdrops prevents the glare, crumples and sizing issues that small samples come with.
Personalised Leather Photo Album There is no better gift at Christmas time than a classic photo album. If your anything like me, you’ll receive these with every intention to fill them up with memories, and then never actually do it. Regardless, I still love both receiving and giving them. This personalised album by Paper High is one of the loveliest I’ve come across. Leather bound, with an optional inscription on the front, hey come in different colours, but it wouldn’t be Christmas without a red one.
If your looking to spend a little bit more, then the range of options for gifts is suddenly much more substantial – so much so that the choices can be overwhelming. Whether you are going for thoughtful, or useful, or just a gift to make you look like you know what your talking about, there are some great options below.
Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM Where would a photography gift guide be without the infamous nifty fifty lens? Upgrading my camera with this lens was the best thing I ever done for my photography. It’s light and easy to cart around, but works wonders for images. It captures at a fixed distance, which can be a bit of a pain, but for £100 or so it’s really not too much of a problem. A perfect present for any photography novice or camera buff.
Personalised Leather Camera Bag We spend so much money on kit: our camera, our lenses and all the added extras (that we probably don’t need), and then often throw them into the bottom of bags (in my case abandoned in the basket of a pram). Having looked at camera bags previously, they’ve always resembled something I’d imagine my dad would have had for our old video recorder in the 90s’. I came across the Paper High personalised leather bag, and for the first time found one I’d be happy to use. Roomy and practical, but also pretty damn good looking, this would make a brilliant present for anyone who takes pride in their camera. Plus, personalised – game changer. Be sure to check to make use of the Not On The High Street voucher codes, as it’s not often you can find a discount!
GripTight PRO Video These tripods are one of those presents that may not seem like much of a gift, but will quickly become an essential used time and time again. This particular one can be used for both phones and smaller cameras (DSLR’s are a no-go), and are brilliant for when you don’t have a flat surface or your looking for a more obscure angle. It is extremely secure, robust and can wrap around things, which is great for when out and about.
Epson Expression Photo XP-8500 In this digital age, we often take these groundbreaking pictures, share them with our Facebook friends and lose them as they move further and further down our feeds. Long gone are the days when we would have our pictures developed and save them for a rainy day. I’m under no allusion that I’ll make it to Boots and have each of my images printed, but having a high quality photo printer gives me the control to print the ones I really want myself.
It would not be a photography gift guide if I didn’t include some of the big hitters in here. While I’m sure we don’t all have budgets to buy these for every Tom, Dick and Harry in there neighborhood, there might just be someone special these could work for. If not and your like me, they may just give you some inspirations for your next big camera purchase, I know two of them are definitely on my list…
Go Pro Hero 5 Where would my gift guide be without the number one on my own Christmas List. The humble Go Pro Hero 5, while I once believed it to be a little camera that was good for no more than a dodgy underwater shot and a questionable fish eye, the more and more I learn about it the more I’m desperate for one. I cannot confirm if it’s truly worth the money, but if you need anymore convincing, Alex’s videos should do the trick for you. It’s no cheap and cheerful action camera, but one that would see through every season, every terrain and every possible shoot.
Canon 750D The Canon 750D is a great camera for anyone looking to really delve into taking pictures. It is a good option for those looking for a quality DSLR, and would make a great gift for someone who is serious about improving. It is not the smallest of body, but depending on the lens used it’s still light enough to cart around, and I’m yet to find a problem with it.
Sigma 18-35mm A special gift for a special person, this is no cheap and cheerful lens, but the price very much reflects the quality. It gives the most wonderful bokeh, but unlike the 50mm lens from earlier, does not work at a fixed focal length (hallelujah). In layman’s terms, it’s just a really nice bit of a kit, and worth every penny. It’s also very very heavy, so it has the added benefit of a mini arm workout anytime you choose to shoot.
Olympus Pen Finally, the most aesthetically pleasing of all of the cameras, ever. It’s a stylish model that supposedly can equal the DSLR’s without question. I am yet to try it out, but It’s the most powerful ever PEN and one of the most beautiful system cameras Olympus has ever produced, so I can’t imagine it would ever be less than amazing.
I am no expert, but I’m the first to admit to spending hours trawling the internet for bits to make my photography just that little bit better. I’ve listed my favorites however this is by no means an exhaustive list. Photography lovers don’t have to be difficult to buy for if you have a nudge in the right direction, so here’s hoping this gift guide gave you some inspiration.