Last Minutes Gifts for Photographers

This post is LATE in coming, I know, but everything I am sharing here is available at or BH Photo and will likely get to you in time if ordered today (depending on where you are located). There are many other  items that I use and enjoy, but they would not make it to you in time for Christmas (like My Funky Camera straps or camera bags, or UnDfind laptop/lens bags).

The items I share below are all things I own and use frequently. They are things you can buy yourself or tell your loved ones you would love to have for Christmas or for other gift-giving events throughout the year.

Recommended Photography Equipment

50mm f1.8 Lens $100 – $500

The 50mm f1.8, called the Nifty Fifty, is a staple lens for most photographers. It has a 1 to 1 view on full frame sensors, meaning what you see through the lens is accurate to what you see with your human eye. It is fantastic for food photography and portraits; just an all-around useful lens.

For Nikons, there are three 50mm lenses to choose from: 50mm f1.8G $220 (below), 50mm f1.8 $100, 50mm f1.4G $400. I recommend the 50mm f1.8G, $220. I do not have that exact lens, but I’ve heard nothing but good things about it, and it will work on all Nikon bodies, whereas the $100 50mm f1.8 will not auto focus on entry level bodies (like Nikon D5100 and below). I have the 50mm f1.4G, which is $300 more than this lens, but doesn’t provide that much more value, so I recommend the f1.8 instead.

For Canons, your 50mm f1.8 lens is just $100 and will work on all Canon bodies.

85mm f1.8 Lens $400

If you already have the Nifty Fifty, the next great lens to have in your bag is a 85mm f1.8. When I recently bought a used Canon 50D, I skipped over the 50mm and went straight to the Canon 85mm f1.8. I adore the creamy skin tones and bokeh/blur you get with this lens, regardless of which brand you have.

For the Nikon 85mm f1.8 click here.

Manfrotto Monopod $70

Space efficient and effective for working with slower shutter speeds, the Manfrotto monopod is sturdy and a handy thing to have. I have thoroughly enjoyed mine!

Canon Elph 100 Point and Shoot Camera $115

I have two significant cameras, the Nikon D700 and the Canon 50D, but honestly I do not tote them with me all the time. Instead, my Canon G12 ($380) goes with me most  places for those occasional shots I may want, or to take super fantastic and totally amazing video (the G12 rocks video, just saying!).

Not everyone wants to spend $500 on a P&S camera, so for those who need or want something more affordable, I recommend the Canon Elph 100. I bought TWO the Saturday after Thanksgiving, for my 11 and 8  year old children. We have had a predecessor to this camera for three years and it’s still going strong; it stays in my husband’s computer bag so that he’s never without a camera.

And, for the record, I recommended this camera BEFORE it was listed as the best camera for the money via USA Today.

Reflectors $12-$50

Something I think every photo-enthusiast should have is a reflector. I have three: two from Impact, a 45 in and a 20 in, then one from Wescott. The price for the Wescott is much more affordable, although the reflector is not as durable. However with the price being just $12, I won’t get too upset if it breaks in a year.

LensPen $8

I have a couple of LensPens, one for each of my camera bags. It has a brush on one end and a cleaning tip on the other. Saying it’s useful is an understatement, invaluable is more like it. At just $8, I encourage you to stock up on them!

Card Reader $16

A card reader is something I started using just a few months ago. Before I used a USB cord each time and thought it was fine, didn’t feel the need to get a card reader. Well, out of curiosity, I bought the Kingston card reader and boy was I pleasantly surprised!! This card reader was only $16 and it seriously speeds up the copying of images from your card to your computer.


Photography Vendor Gift Certificates

The following vendors are kind and gracious ladies whom I know and admire for the savvy business skills and fantastic products.

Madilu Designs

If you do not already have a custom logo for your photography business, or just to use on your images when sharing online, I highly recommend checking out Kim at Madilu Designs. She’s done both my logos for Everyday Elements and I will continue to work with her in the future – love Kim! If you already have a custom logo she can create a beautiful and effective marketing set around that logo, so really give your business a polished look.

Pretty Presets

If you have Lightroom, a gift card to Pretty Presets will allow you to pick up some beautiful presets. She has many different collections, so you will surely find one that fits your personal style. And, if you are new to Lightroom, she has two Lightroom workshops (led by me) that you can purchase and work through on your own time.

Love That Shot

Misti and Michelle at Love That Shot have worked hard to provide anything a new photographer might need to get started shooting and editing. They also have gorgeous photo veils that I have and love to use.

Kim Klassen Cafe

Kim Klassen is a true artist-turned-photographer who hand paints all of her textures before turning them into digital images. She has several different collections, so something for everyone, plus she offers  texture workshops and a private forum called The Test Kitchen.

Chasing Dreams

Colleen at Chasing Dreams is a sweet and generous photographer and vendor who creates gorgeous and affordable textures.

The Album Cafe

Tiffany at The Album Cafe offers very polished and professional templates for all occasions. I have the ability to make templates, but lack the creativity to make beautiful ones. So, instead I buy templates from those who specialize in them and many of those I have came from The Album Cafe; you cannot go wrong with their templates!

Everyday Elements

I almost didn’t add myself, but since so many have asked if I have gift certificates, I figured it couldn’t hurt. 😉 If you are wanting to take a workshop in the future, or get a “stand alone” now, or a set of actions, you can ask your loved ones for a gift certificate to EE. Click HERE to purchase one.

About Amanda

I am passionate about helping others learn how to use their DSLR cameras and editing programs. More information about me can be found at my About page, or by visiting my personal blog.


  1. I love my 50mm and would love to get an 85mm but don’t have the budget for it yet (especially as it is a hobby rather than a business). Will save my pennies and hopefully this time next year it will be under the Christmas tree for me 🙂

  2. Why would you need an 85mm if you have a 50mm already. Is 85mm a prime lens. The whole lens thing can get somewhat confusing…. love the 50! for sure a quick, wonderful lens for capturing people.

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