It’s that time of the year, and photographers are dropping subtle hints at what they might want for Christmas. Lucky for us, there are a lot of sales going on right now, and some great new products you might want to think about for the photographer on your list. These items range from one dollar to over $2000, so something should fit your budget! Here goes.
1. Let’s start with the expensive one. If you are a Nikon shooter, you will be giddy with joy at the amazing bundles they are offering right now. You can buy great SLRs like the D7100 or D750 bundled with great lenses like the 24-120mm F4 and get an instant savings of $1000. Wow! Check out these deals here.
2. Looking for a way to get really creative with your photography? Have you ever tried a lensbaby? These simple lenses fit your DSLR body, and allow a full range of creative effects from selective focus, tilt shift and soft focus. If you are saying ‘I can do that in post’, you can, but have you ever noticed how you shoot and compose differently in the field when you are looking at the effect in real time. Right now the Composer Pro is $100 off.
3. Singh-Ray filters. I use a number of SR filters including the 10 and 15 stop ND, the Vari-ND, polarizer and their classic graduated ND filters. Right now you can get 10% off and free shipping at Singh-Ray.
4. If you enjoy lighting, or want to get into more lighting, you must take a look at the portable Elinchrom ELB 400. This pack is my new favorite flash system. Why? Because it weighs 6 pounds, can sync to 1/8000 and I can take it anywhere. You can the get the intro pack for $1750 at your favorite camera store.
5. How about some new software to spice up your images in the computer? I have been using the recently updated On1 Photo 10 and have been really impressed. No matter what style of photography you like, you will find loads of presets and filter options to bring life to your image. And the software has extensive control over the effects you apply, and where you apply them in the image.
6. One item I always have in my pack is a headlamp. Photographers are always shooting at dawn, dusk and even at night, so this is an important item. The Black Diamond Storm headlamp is your choice. At $50, this headlamp is waterproof, has multiple power settings (and is very bright at max power), red light for night shooting, and even a battery level indicator on the side. Don’t leave home without it.
7. If you are shooting in the snow, nothing is worse than cold feet. After 10 years winters tramping around in Alaska in subzero temps, I always pack my Sorel Caribous. These boots should keep you warm to -20 or more, and are built for years of use. I’ve used the same pair for years teaching the winter Yellowstone workshop. If you are photographing northern lights above the arctic circle in Alaska and want even more warmth, try the Sorel Glaciers.
8. Speaking of cold, how about stuffing the stocking with HotHands hand warmers. These chemical hand warmers are great to put in your pocket to keep your hands warm when you aren’t using your camera. My group at Bosque Del Apache last week used them and went back to buy more.
9. How about spending $20 (one month) for the best value in photography education? What photographer wouldn’t love learning from hundreds of classes online on every photography topic and post processing technique you can imagine. As many of you know, I work with KelbyOne, and continue to be impressed by the constant output of new classes he offers. Check out their new website and offers at KelbyOne.
10. Another great stocking stuffer? Gepe flash card cases. Waterproof, dustproof and almost impossible to crush, these cases float in the water too. You could literally drop one of these out the car window into a puddle driving 70 MPH and your cards would be fine.