photo by GMVozd via iStock
With the holidays getting closer - and Black Friday closer still - it’s necessary to start thinking about what gifts you’ll bestow on the photographers in your life.
With a budget of $150, there are a lot of options that will make a photographer’s eyes light up this holiday season.
Below, we’ve outlined ten of the best gifts for photographers under $150. From canvas prints to lens filters to video microphones, there’s something for everyone!
Gifts for Photographers Under $150: CanvasHQ Print
If you’re like me, sometimes finding the perfect gift for certain loved ones is a long, drawn-out process that causes tons of stress, and often you still don’t get something that totally blows them away.
I think a lot of photographers fall into this category. We have specific likes, and many of us already have most of what we want or need gear-wise, and what we don’t have is usually too expensive to put on a Christmas wish-list anyway.
But for all those hard-to-shop-for photographers on your 2019 holiday shopping list, I have the perfect solution - a large-format canvas print.
Think about it…
A canvas print is the gift that keeps on giving.
Not only can you immortalize one of your favorite images from your favorite photographer, but you also give them a means to showcase their work in a format that’s drop-dead gorgeous.
I have tons of canvases in my home, the vast majority of which are from CanvasHQ.
Now, I know what you’re thinking - canvas is old school.
Sure, maybe it is, but I’m telling you that these canvas prints from CanvasHQ are mind-bogglingly beautiful. In fact, they go head-to-head with any metal or acrylic print I have in my home.
The attention to detail is just amazing, and the materials they use are top-of-the-line. We’re talking archival-grade canvas, commercial-grade inks that are water and UV resistant, and kiln-dried pine frames to keep everything straight and true.
I love the personality that the canvas texture gives my images. That’s true whether it’s a portrait of my son or a landscape photo.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the customer service you get with CanvasHQ.
These guys are committed to getting it right, so if something doesn’t go as planned, you won’t be hung out to dry.
If you have questions, they’ll answer them. If you have a problem, they’ll fix it. If you need assistance with uploading your photo or even picking the best finishes for your canvas, they’ve got your back.
In the video above, I explain why I highly recommend a CanvasHQ canvas print as the ideal gift for the photographer on your holiday shopping list.
Start shopping for your favorite photographer today on CanvasHQ!
Gifts for Photographers Under $150: Marumi M100 Magnetic Filter Holder
This innovative magnetic filter system by Marumi speeds up the process of changing filters by enabling quick attachment and detachment.
When seconds count as the light changes, having a filter system that streamlines your workflow is a huge asset, and something that the photographer on your list is sure to appreciate.
Made of aircraft aluminum, this filter holder is supremely strong and durable, yet super lightweight too, making it the perfect companion for landscape photographers that need a quality filter holder that doesn’t weigh down their bag.
The gaskets on the front of the holder help prevent light leaks while the holder ensures there is no vignetting when used with a 16-35mm lens. That means clear, clean, beautiful results when using Marumi magnetic filters with the M100 filter holder.
Gifts for Photographers Under $150: Holdfast Sightseer Small Lens Pouch
One of the best features of the Holdfast Gear Sightseer line of bags is that they are modular, so as your kit grows, your bag system can grow along with it.
Part of that modular system is the Sightseer Small Lens Pouch shown above.
These beautifully crafted lens pouches are constructed of waxed canvas and American Bison leather. Inside, the Aztec flannel fleece looks like a million bucks while providing a soft, secure environment that cradles your lens.
The outside of the pouch is weather resistant while the Aztec flannel on the interior is scratch resistant, which means your favorite photographer won’t have to worry about their gear getting wet or scratched no matter how many times they go out and shoot.
These pouches can be worn on any belt, on the Holdfast MoneyMaker, or on the exterior of the Holdfast Sightseer Bag, so there’s a ton of different ways for photographers to have their favorite lens right at their fingertips.
What better gift to give this holiday season than one that’s super functional, looks great, and is supremely versatile too?!
Gifts for Photographers Under $150: Wolverine Data F2D Titan
If you’re like me, you probably have a box or two of old 35mm negatives or slides laying around in your house somewhere.
If the photographer on your shopping list has hoarded a few negatives and slides, think about getting them the ultimate photography gift this holiday season - the Wolverine Data F2D Titan.
This rig allows you to convert all sorts of analog stuff to digital - 35mm/127/126 & 110 negatives, slides, 8mm and Super 8 movies.
In fact, not only does the F2D Titan convert these files, but it does so into 20-megapixel digital images in mere seconds. Literally - you push a button, and the Titan does the rest without the need for any additional software or even a computer
Each image you scan is saved to the internal memory on the device, or you can opt to insert an SD/SDHC memory card for saving files.
You can also transfer the images to your Mac or PC for storage or editing, or if you want to quickly view the images, you can hook the Titan up to your TV to watch a slideshow (TV cable not included)
With the versatility and ease of use of this product, it’s a perfect gift idea for photographers that have a ton of old negatives, or even a friend or family member that’s been hanging onto their old memories, but unable to do much with them. Give them the gift of organizing their photos and being able to enjoy their old memories quickly and easily too!
Gifts for Photographers Under $150: Kenko PL Fader Variable ND Filter
The great thing about a variable neutral density filter is that it’s like having a complete ND filter kit wrapped into a single filter.
This PL Fader by Kenko offers variable densities from ND3 to ND400, offering photographers a wide range of possibilities for controlling exposure.
Made with two high-transparency polarizing film layers, this filter controls the amount of light that passes through to the camera lens, giving photographers supreme control over shutter speed for blurring motion during the daytime.
What’s more, this filter can also help control the aperture, allowing photographers to open up the aperture to minimize depth of field without worrying about overexposing the shot. That goes for still photography and videography too!
Whether your loved one enjoys photography, videography, or both, they’ll certainly appreciate having a variable ND filter that enables them to achieve the creative effects they want without worrying about overexposure.
Gifts for Photographers Under $150: RODE VideoMic
If the photographer on your list is like me and has expanded their activities into video production, then they need a high-quality microphone.
The RODE VideoMic is just that…
It has a Rycote Lyre Suspension System that helps prevent unwanted vibrations and noise from handling.
It easily mounts to any camera with a hot-shoe and is effective at eliminating noise from either side while picking up the desired audio from the front.
Even in noisy environments or at moderate distances, this mic is capable of capturing clean audio to complement beautiful video footage.
With a battery life of about 100 hours, the photographer in your life will have plenty of juice to keep recording and recording too!
Gifts for Photographers Under $150: Kenko Pro ND 100000 Filter
If the photographer on your list specializes in long exposure photography, then they need this ultra-dark ND 100000 filter from Kenko.
With 16.5-stops of light-stopping power, this filter enables photographers to extend their shutter speeds to incredible lengths - several minutes, in fact.
The result of having the shutter open for so long is gorgeously ethereal scenes with beautifully blurred movement of water, clouds, and other moving features.
Likewise, this filter is dark enough that it can be used as a solar filter, so your favorite photographer will be ready to go for the next solar eclipse.
This filter glass is made using a carbon vapor deposit method that ensures and even coating that completely blocks out infrared light.
The glass itself is made of Asahi optical glass and has a multi-coating to ensure maximum resolution.
Available in multiple sizes, this filter is a must-have for photographers that want to explore the possibilities of long exposures!
Gifts for Photographers Under $150: f-stop Dalston Bag
If the photographer on your holiday shopping list is in need of a high-quality, versatile camera bag, then look no further than the f-stop Dalston.
This bag was designed with meeting the demands of the urban jungle in mind.
As a capable everyday bag, it not only offers excellent storage space but also has a sleek silhouette that makes it less bulky, which is ideal for photographing in tight spaces.
The bag is easy to access, too, with side-access pockets for quick grab and go.
But don’t think that the Dalston is just for quick daytime adventures…
At nearly 19 inches tall and 11.4 inches wide, this bag can hold up to 21 liters of gear. That’s plenty of space for extended photoshoots in which a photographer needs lots of space packed into a sleek bag.
Add in weather-sealed zippers, a removable internal organizer for keeping your gear tidy, a Jersey laminate EVA-padded back panel, and Thermoformed EVA shoulder straps for comfort, and you have the makings of a killer bag for photographers of all kinds!
Gifts for Photographers Under $150: Westcott Rapid Box Octa Softboxes
If you’re in need of a gift for the photographer on your holiday list, don’t just settle for any old thing. Instead, wow them with a gift that has the ability to help them elevate the quality of their photos.
In photography, light is everything, and if the photographer you’re shopping for takes any portraits at all, they need a high-quality softbox in their collection of gear.
And for me, the best softboxes on the market are those by Westcott.
I particularly like their Rapid Box Octa series because they’re lightweight, easy to set up, and supremely durable
The all-aluminum frame is strong and helps the octabox keep its shape - a shape, by the way, that has a very shallow depth, so it can still be used even if space is at a premium.
But what will impress your favorite photographer most about the Rapid Box is probably not its durability or construction, but the way it modifies light.
There’s a silver reflector that’s sewn into the back of the box’s diffusion panel, which minimizes the hot spot from the speedlight and results in gorgeously even light from corner to corner.
Speaking of the diffusion panel - it’s made of an all-natural, unbleached nylon fabric, which softens the light without changing its color temperature. Lesser softboxes cannot claim the same!
In the end, you want the gift you give to your loved one to be something that they love, but also something that they can use over and over again. The 26-inch Westcott Rapid Octa softbox certainly fits the bill!
Gifts for Photographers Under $150: ProMediaGear BP1-PBX3 Paparazzi Bracket
Photographers that need to have a few accessories on their camera will love this ProMediaGear Paparazzi Bracket.
It attaches to a PMG Arca-Type flash bracket base plate and enables you to mount a flash, a flash trigger, or another accessory right next to the camera.
This facilitates better camera balance without greatly impacting its form factor. You can also install the bracket forward or backward, depending on your specific needs.
This bracket comes with the necessary mounting hardware, an anti-rotation mounting plate, and a 1/4-20 threaded adapter. With two 1/4-20 threaded female accessory holes, the bracket arm gives you the option of removing the extension plate if you need a more compact setup.
For photographers with lots of accessory needs, this bracket is the ideal holiday gift!