- An extensive library of film presets that you can customize
- Creative tools like tilt-shift, creative lens focus, and film grain
- Non-destructive editing with layers
- Selection and masking tools to apply effects to specific areas
- An intuitive and easy-to-use workspace
Photo by evgenyatamanenko via iStock
Even though I'm writing this the last week of October, you and I both know that there will be some scrambling as the holidays draw near to find the perfect gift for the photographer in your life.
A lot of photographers are picky (myself included), so it can be difficult to find just the right gift that will bring a smile to their face and that won't end up shoved in the back of the closet.
With that in mind, I've put together the following list of awesome last-minute gifts for photographers that should give you some inspiration for your gift-buying this holiday season.
Let's get to it!
Those of you that follow my ramblings here on PhotographyTalk know that I love to shoot landscapes.
But something I definitely do not love is using those clingy camera rain covers that feel like you're reaching into a wet plastic bag.
Granted, I don't have to worry about the rain all that often here in Southern California, but when it does rain, I have my Camera Canopy with me.
As you can see above, the Camera Canopy sits above the camera and extends outward to protect both the camera body and the lens.
It attaches to the hot-shoe mount on your camera, so it's easy to attach when the weather turns sour.
The shield extends and retracts, so it'll protect your gear whether you're using a 50mm lens or a 300mm lens.
What's more, there are versions for DSLRs and mirrorless cameras, so no matter the camera system the photographer in your life uses, there's a Camera Canopy they can use.
Aside from the ease of use and the fact that the Camera Canopy protects the end of the lens from getting wet, I love that it doesn't obstruct the camera's LCD or controls. No more clingy wet plastic bag!!
So, this thing is convenient, functional, and well-designed, and would make an ideal addition to any photographer's kit.
A Large Print from AP Solutions & Graphics
What photographer wouldn't appreciate a large print or graphic of one of their photos?!
AP Solutions & Graphics makes it easy to give the gift of a beautiful large print thanks to their quick and simple online ordering process.
In fact, you can easily get a quote for your print based on your specifications, including height, width, depth, and media type.
If you order from AP Solutions & Graphics, you can rest assured that the item you order is made from the finest materials and is constructed right here in the USA.
I appreciate the fact that these guys are dedicated to turning your favorite photos into lasting memories. And the photographer on your holiday shopping list will certainly appreciate it too!
No one wants to get a sub-par print, especially if it's of their own photos. But you don't have to worry about print quality with AP Solutions & Graphics because they use high-quality canvas, fine art photo paper, quality fabrics, top-grade inks, and more.
As a U.S. Navy Veteran, I try to patronize businesses that are owned by fellow veterans, and AP Solutions & Graphics fits the bill.
This veteran-owned, U.S.-based business is ready to make your last-minute holiday gift dreams come true!
Hazard 4® Freelance™ Sling-Pack
Rarely do you encounter camera bags described as “tactical,” but in this case, the rank definitely fits the Hazard 4® Freelance™ Photo Sling-Pack.
Hazard 4® designs exceed military specs, so these are trusted by demanding users in the harshest environments - special forces to expedition reporters. Thoughtful sizes, organization, and ergonomics, with 1000 D Cordura® fabric, YKK zips, and patented hardware protect cameras, accessories and survival gear in a futuristic aesthetic that deflects harsh use.
You can cleverly rotate Freelance™ from back to chest for quick gear access without taking it off. Sized for most mirrorless systems with movable padded dividers to organize lenses and accessories, it’s also made in a Drone Edition with special dividers and “Drone Pilot” patch on its velcro I.D. panel.
Three exterior pockets fit extra gear. A sweat managing thermo-molded zip back panel cradles 10.5” iPads®. An admin panel organizes pens and SD cards, among other small items. A molded shell fits two Mavic® Pro batteries and has a patented Hard Point® bus for attaching Hazard 4® systems loops and tie-downs or GoPros® via a ¼-20 screw.
Modular webbing (molle) throughout allows exterior gear expansion. A patented roto-lock buckle prevents drops. Add grab-handles, tripod/compression straps, and more for the makings of one killer last-minute gift for the active photographer on your holiday shopping list!
PolarPro Summit Filters
PolarPro has built a reputation over the years of developing well-built, high-performance products, and their newest filters are no exception.
The Summit series was specifically developed for the rough-and-tumble world of landscape photography.
These filters are built to withstand the rigors of shooting outdoors in harsh conditions while at the same time having a design that makes them incredibly easy to use.
On the one hand, the ND and graduated ND filters have aluminum frames that both protect the filter and help minimize fingerprints getting on the filter glass.
So, not only do you get filters that are more durable, but you also won't spend as much time cleaning the filters to get rid of fingerprints. It's a win-win!
On the other hand, the filters and filter housing feature materials that ratchet up the build quality.
For example, the filters are made of fused Quartz glass with 16 layers of coatings that improve color fidelity and clarity while reducing glare.
As another example, the filter frames are made of lightweight aluminum that helps cut weight in your pack while providing you strong durability for years to come.
Add in a user-friendly design, light-sealed slots, filter locks to lock down the filter position, and the ability to rotate the filter system 360 degrees, and you have the makings of the ideal landscape photography filter kit to give your favorite photographer this holiday season!
If you’re cutting it close for the holidays and need a killer photography gift, look no further than Snaptiles. Snaptiles are a new patented Magnetic Photo Tile that is 8”x8”x1” and super lightweight.
This innovative system uses a single wall mount with a built-in level to anchor a central print to the wall. Then you can snap together the other tiles onto the first! The wall mount uses four adhesive strips that don’t damage the wall, yet offer all the support that’s needed to display up to 12 tiles. Just make sure you press down firmly for 10 seconds. You can also push in the 4 included thumb tacks for additional support, then mount up to 30 tiles on the first tile! Not a bad tradeoff for 4 little pin holes in your wall.
The process is simple: just attach the wall mount to the wall, mount the anchor tile to it, and then begin to create an array of mixed tiles by adding additional Snaptiles.
Each tile connects with strong magnets, so there’s no worry of the tiles sagging or slipping.
Best of all, though, this system enables you to swap images out as you get new photo tiles, rearrange them in the display, and create different shapes with an array of images.
It really couldn’t be any easier!
The images are printed on a premium SBS Acid Free archival paperboard to give you long-lasting durability. On top of that, the UV protective lamination on the tiles has a beautifully soft touch.
I just ordered 25 of these photo tiles for my son’s room. He loves art and he loves building, and I think he will love putting his Snaptiles together (with my help of course!) on his bedroom wall.
This isn’t just a great last-minute gift, but it’s also a fun project you can share with whomever you give them to. It’s a win-win!
Travel School Membership
Photo by anyaberkut via iStock
Wouldn’t it be nice to travel the world as you make money, pursuing your dreams without being encumbered by a traditional job?
If that sounds like a dream that’s too good to be true - it isn’t! Even better, it’s a dream you can make a reality for that special person on your last-minute holiday shopping list.
Travel School is a comprehensive training program for starting an independent affiliate marketing business. It will take your loved one step-by-step through the process of building a business that is not only wildly successful in the short-term, but can sustain steady growth for the long-term too.
But Travel School isn’t just a step-by-step training program. Instead, it will change your loved one’s outlook on what it means to work, and at the same time will be a transformational experience that will change their entire life for the better.
With specific, actionable steps, the person on your holiday shopping list will learn how to connect with established brands, develop core marketing skills, and activate multiple income streams to realize their dream of living a life full of travel and freedom.
Travel School founder Emilian travels the world with his furry friend, Divak, and is eager to share his knowledge and experience with you and help you build a successful affiliate marketing business that will allow you to quit your traditional job and travel the world like you want!
Not only does Travel School aid in leveraging the credibility of amazing companies, but they will also offer weekly private webinars to keep your loved one motivated and on track toward accomplishing their goals.
Additionally, all training sessions are recorded and available at any time, that way if questions come up down the road or a little extra motivation is needed, the lessons can be easily accessed. There are opportunities to learn and collaborate with other students too!
It’s not often that you have the opportunity to give the gift of freedom, but in this case, Travel School is just that!
Deity D3 Pro Microphone
More and more photographers are getting into video production, and to do that, they have to expand their arsenal of tools beyond traditional photography gear.
And while having a camera with good video capabilities is a must, so too is having a high-quality microphone to record audio for the videos. After all, a video can have incredible footage, but with poor audio quality, the video will fall flat.
That's where the Deity D3 Pro comes in...
This super cardioid directional condenser shotgun mic has a sensitivity of -50dB to 28dB and uses an on-board microprocessor that digitally talks to the audio input it's connected with.
That means it can work with a tablet, a DSLR, a mirrorless camera, or a smartphone - essentially anything with a 3.5mm microphone jack.
The internal battery offers a whopping 51 hours of runtime, yet it charges in less than two hours.
A neat feature is that you can adjust the gain by using the stepless analog gain adjustment dial. This is the only microphone in the world that has this feature!
Add in on-board low-cut filters, a rycote shock mount, and broadcast-quality sound, and you have the makings of an ideal gift for a photographer that wants to step up their videography game!
If you’re rushing around trying to find that perfect last-minute gift for your favorite photographer, you might consider the Octopus.Camera OctoPad as an excellent choice.
The OctoPad offers what many other stabilization devices don’t - it doesn’t collapse under the weight of gear it’s supporting and it doesn’t slide around, even if it’s placed on a smooth or an uneven surface thanks to its weighted non-slip mat design.
The OctoPad has a built-in male 1/4-20 inch threaded bolt for attaching accessories and a high-capacity removable ball head that also has an adjustable 1/4-20 inch threaded male bolt.
That means that not only is the OctoPad well-equipped to stay in place, but it can also support a wide range of gear, from a GoPro to a smartphone to a light or microphone.
There’s even a built-in cable strap to keep cables from getting in your way and a clip grommet for attaching a lanyard to easily carry the OctoPad.
What photographers want in a gift is something that’s versatile and functional, and the OctoPad is definitely both. Best of all, it’s just $26.95, so you can give an awesome gift without busting your budget!
Aputure Amaran AL-MX Bi-Color LED Mini Light
This pocket-sized light might be small, lightweight, and portable, but it packs a mighty punch with 128 LEDs, 3200lux of brightness, and a "boost mode" that increases brightness by 30 percent for bursts of 60 seconds.
Add to all that power the ability to tune the light from 2800-6500K so the photographer on your list can make fine adjustments to how the light looks to suit each and every photograph.
The quality of the light is top-notch, too - it offers a CRI of 95+ and a TLCI or 95+ as well.
This light has a wide beam angle of 120-degrees, a portable design that's about the width and height of a credit card, and a durable metal body that's crafted of aircraft-grade aluminum.
It has a 1/4 screw and a universal cold-shoe mount so it can be mounted on a camera, a tripod, a light stand, and so forth.
This unit has a built-in battery that offers about an hour of runtime at full power and four hours of runtime at minimum power. The battery is rechargeable via a USB-C cable.
This is simply a well-built, bright, easy-to-use light that any photographer would appreciate in their stocking this holiday season!
Haida M-10 Filter System
One of the newest additions to my camera bag is the Haida M-10 Filter System, and I can't sing its praises enough.
The filter holder is super lightweight thanks to its aluminum construction, so it's durable and sturdy, but doesn't add unnecessary weight to your lens.
Inside the holder are slots where you can drop filters in. The slots are even lined with felt to help prevent scratches to the filters!
Another neat feature is that the holder has a quick-release clip for easy on and off. The clip is well-built and has a good amount of tension, so you don't have to worry about accidentally disengaging the clip as you work.
You can use square or circular filters with this holder. In fact, the kit comes with a variety of filters, including a circular polarizer, a variety of graduated ND filters, and solid ND filters as well.
And since the holder has two filter slots, you can mix and match filters as needed.
Both the filters and the holder are very well built - you can tell when you're holding them that they are high-quality products that will last a good, long while.
That being the case, if the photographer on your list has been hinting at needing a new filter system, you've got the perfect gift for them!
The latest version of Exposure - Exposure X5 - was released just a few weeks ago to much fanfare.
Exposure has a ton of easy-to-use, yet powerful editing tools that any photographer would appreciate. This includes:
On top of all that, Exposure X5 has 3D color masking functionalities that will give the photographer on your shopping list the ability to have precise control over where an adjustment is made to an image.
These color controls can be defined by very specific features, like saturation, hue, and luminance, which means you can target the sky, skin tones, or other specific color ranges, all with just a few clicks.
This software also has vignette correction, chromatic aberration correction, fringe removal, and custom camera profiles to boot.
You can even test-drive Exposure for free for 30 days to see if it's something you want to give as a gift this holiday season.
Hakutatz Pocket Size RGB+AW LED Light
If you’re not sure what to get the photographer on your holiday shopping list, an ideal last-minute gift is the gift of light.
Light - good light - is essential for making high-quality photographs, and good light is exactly what you get with the Hakutatz Pocket Size RGB+AW LED Light.
This rechargeable light is ultra-portable and will fit in a photographer’s pocket for easy transport.
Photographers can utilize both white and amber light and a wide variety of RGB lighting options that allow for precise adjustments to get just the right light for each shot.
With 152 LEDs (40 white, 40 amber, and 72 RGB), adjustable saturation from 1-100%, 1480 lux brightness, and an adjustable color temperature from 3000-6500K, this light offers superb functionality and tons of customizations.
The light connects to any Android or iOS smartphone, which allows for changing the color temperature, the RGB color, and dialing in special effects. These changes can be made both quickly and easily thanks to the intuitive and user-friendly LCD display.
Use one light on its own or multiple lights to combine effects to get the perfect shot. Either way, photographers have the power to add vibrancy, visual interest, and accents to their photos right at their fingertips!
I don’t know how many BlueTooth speakers I’ve had over the years. Come to think of it, I couldn’t even tell you how many BlueTooth speakers I have in my house right now.
They’re utilitarian. They’re forgettable. Most BlueTooth speakers are nothing special.
But the patent-pending BlueTooth Photo changes all that because it turns your favorite photo or piece of art into a canvas that sings.
All you have to do is upload your image and the fine folks at BlueTooth Photo do the rest. You get a premium-grade, artist-quality canvas that showcases your favorite images all the while being the perfect vessel for fantastic audio quality for your music.
What better way to enjoy music than by listening to it emanate from your favorite photo? And what better way to appreciate your favorite photo than by having a look at it each and every time you want to listen to your favorite songs?
It’s the best of both worlds!
BlueTooth Photo is a fantastic gift idea for the photographer (or anyone else!) on your holiday shopping list. Get them an 8x12 image in either portrait or landscape orientation this Christmas for just $89.00.
Use the coupon code PT20 to get $20 off your purchase!
Yet another top choice for a last-minute gift for the photographer on your list is Luminar 4.
At the time of this writing, Luminar 4 is still a couple of weeks from being released, but I've had a chance to look at it, and WOW is a word that immediately comes to mind.
Luminar makes use of artificial intelligence to allow photographers to make specific and detailed edits to their photos, but without the process being one that's laborious or time-consuming.
For example, Luminar 4 features an AI Sky Replacement tool that allows you to automatically change the sky in any photo. Yes, change the sky - not just edit it to look prettier.
Better still, you can change the sky without creating masks or making selections, and the AI Sky Replacement Tool will relight the entire image, that way the original image and the new sky match in terms of brightness.
Luminar 4 also has handy tools for portrait photographers, like the AI Skin Enhancer, which detects blemishes and removes them, all the while preserving details in the skin. This tool will detect skin anywhere in the photo (not just people's faces), and its corrections are made with just one click.
There's also an AI Portrait Enhancer that has 12 tools that enable you to make corrections to the face, eyes, and mouth in a way that maximizes control while maintaining ease of use.
Needless to say, Luminar 4 is packed with features and will make a great addition to any photographer's workflow!
Wiral LITE Cable Cam
I've had the Wiral Lite Cable Cam for a couple of months now, and I can't tell you how much fun I've had using it.
It is incredibly easy to use, too, as it has a simple rope system that allows for quick setup.
And once you have it setup, you can get beautifully smooth, dynamic tracking shots that take your videos to the next level.
This patent-pending rope system is called "Quickreel," and uses an ultra static rope so you get superb performance with excellent safety. The beauty, though, is that this rope doesn't add bulk or weight, so it's easy to carry.
This rope system can be used with a variety of cameras, from a GoPro to your smartphone to a DSLR or mirrorless camera.
If you watch the video above, you can see the kind of long, smooth video sequences that are possible.
It looks like a video that was taken using a big, expensive setup!
But this rig is less than $500...
Quick setup, loads of features, huge functionality, and a great price. What more could you want in a last-minute gift for the photographer on your list?!
Holdfast MoneyMaker Solo
One of my favorite pieces of gear is my MoneyMaker Solo camera strap. This thing is gorgeously crafted, easy on the eyes, and super functional, too.
What I like most about this strap is the comfort it offers.
It has a big, contoured shoulder strap that helps keep fatigue at bay. The shoulder strap stays in place on your shoulder too (go figure!), so carrying your camera for extended periods of time doesn't turn into making constant adjustments to how the strap interacts with your body.
Part of what helps the strap stay in place is the stability strap that wraps under your arm.
The other component of that is the ingenious Belt Anchor, which keeps the camera attached to your hip, rather than flopping around as you walk.
Not only does that improve the comfort level, but it makes it a safer endeavor to carry your camera, especially in crowded areas.
The construction of this thing is worth mentioning, too.
It's made of a single piece of full-grain leather, so it's absolutely stunning to look at.
The high-quality leather is paired with stainless steel hardware, so you know that the strap and its components will last the photographer on your list for years and years and years to come!
Check out my Holdfast MoneyMaker Solo Review to get more details on this awesome gift idea for photographers.