Photographers can be not only difficult to buy for, but expensive! Here are a few inexpensive gift idea for the outdoor photographer which prove that there are still some bits of photography kit that need not break the bank. We’ve not included memory cards in here as that’s the photographic gift equivalent of socks. They’re also items that should be compatible, so long as you get some details on their kit.
Lightweight tripods or mono-pods.
Some will say that a cheap tripod isn’t worth buying, though we had decent results from a sub £20 one from Amazon until our proper Giottos tripod arrived, complete with hotshoe and ball head. Yes, there’s no going back to cheap tripods, but you can still get something in the region of £20-30 for the outdoor photographer that adds value. We recently reviewed the Terra Nova Uni-Pod that’s both a mono-pod and a walking pole that’s a welcome addition to any outdoor photographer’s pack. Not forgetting the Gorillapod SLR version, which is quite nifty with a proper tripod head.
Lens pouches or cases (£Various)
You can’t keep your camera kit too safe! You can get specific lens cases from LowePro for under £20, and if you can get one to fit, these are worth every penny. Simple neoprene cases are also useful, but far from the quality of the LowePro lens cases. We’re not a fan of the camera backpack for the outdoor photographer, the cheap ones simply lack space! You’d be better off following our guide on keeping your camera kit safe on the hill.
A Good Book – There’s a fair few to choose from, and if in doubt just get one of the Landscape Photographer of the Year books to provide inspiration.
Macro Ring Kit (under £20 for entry level )
Macro photography, or taking pictures of tiny things for the rest of us, is one of those branches of photography that doesn’t require much travelling or much more kit than you’ve already got. Providing you’ve got a camera with a decent lens, these allow you to explore wildlife from a new angle.
Adapter Rings – £6 and up.
Here’s our totally cheapskate and off the wall option of an M42 adapter ring – and it’s nothing about Midland motorways. This cheap gadget allows you to connect older screw-type lenses onto newer cameras, especially onto the more popular Canon and Nikon DSLR bodies. You’ll need to do some research if they’ve a different camera, and some lens types just won’t play nicely with certain cameras.
Why would you want to do this? For a bit of a play more than anything, you can get hold of used lenses cheaply and there may be some gems in there! They’re also manual only, which might put some people off, but one of the best ways to understand the camera – old school.
Of course, you could also max the credit card, but that’s another post altogether!