Twelve Gifts for a Photographer’s Christmas

Tree 2 xmas presents

We finished decorating our 15-foot Christmas tree, and I started putting the tracks together for the Christmas train that goes round and round the tree.  Afterwards, my wife, Linda, resting and enjoying a cup of tea, and perusing the glory of our handiwork commented, “You haven’t told me yet what you want for Christmas. Do you want something for your photography?”

I hadn’t thought about what I wanted.  I had been enjoying the tree, the decorations, and the Christmas music, but as far as a gift for me, especially, “something for photography” left me at a loss of what to say, so I replied, “I suppose I want everything and anything that will fit my camera.”

I watched the train go round the tree, and I listened to the music coming from the satellite receiver (I like the channel that plays smooth Christmas jazz) and tried to think about what I could tell my wife.

In keeping with that subject, I decided to pose that question on a couple of photographer forums I frequent. There are so many different photographers with different ideas on what would be the perfect photography gift for them, that I edited them a bit and selected twelve in keeping with the tradition of twelve days of Christmas.

I am absolutely sure readers have their own Christmas list, however, here are some of the requests I picked out for this year.

(1) “I asked for the Canon 6D, worth a try.”  (The first on the list is one of many that wanted a particular camera, and I just went with the first response of many.)  One would have had to been really good to deserve this.

(2) “I thought about asking for an additional tripod; a smaller, lighter one for hiking… but I would not want to push my luck.”  Good choice.

(3) “I asked Santa for a 70-200mm lens.”  Very nice.

(4) “Lensbaby Composer Pro – This tilting lens is the first item on my list.”  Wow.

(5) “I already bought a Fujifilm X100s…I couldn’t wait.”  Good move.

(6) “I’ve asked for gift cards, better chance of getting some of those than the Nikon D800 I really want.”  That works for me.

(7) “A Bush Hawk Shoulder Mount would be great to find under the Christmas tree.” That would be so neat.

(8) “A 50mm f/1.4 lens would be perfect.” I agree.

(9) “I really would be happy if I could get a macro ring flash for Christmas.”  I agree.

(10) “I would like a wireless off-camera flash, light stand, and a softbox.” Excellent.

(11) “I’d be happy with a 5-in-1 collapsible reflector, or if I am really very good I would like a really big umbrella, 80 inches would be super.”  Absolutely.

(12) “A new camera backpack to hold the 70-200mm lens I hope I am getting.”  That would be so neat.

Personally, I could suggest to my wife that she empty out our savings and get me a really long focal length lens. But I doubt that item would actually find it’s way under our tree. After all there needs to be some money left for her. So, being the practical guy I am, I think I’ll request that Santa Claus puts a couple of good quality, 32GB memory cards in my stocking.

There is still time to get your list ready. Good luck and Merry Christmas.

Got any additions or comments? Let me know – Thanks, John

My new website is at

16 responses to “Twelve Gifts for a Photographer’s Christmas

      • I should check that out. I have never tested one, and I may have misconceptions about how to use a LCD positioned at arms length instead of holding a camera tightly against my face, arms tucked in to reduce shake.

        You believe the Sony is an upgrade from the D7100? Gosh, I need to do some research.


      • Now you have me interested. I did read the a7-r discussion on Luminous Landscape. That camera seems to have a viewfinder. I didn’t notice if it was Coupled for focusing?
        Anyway that camera seems to be close to the D800e!


      • I don’t really think of the Fuji X100s as Mirrorless like I would the newest Sony. I would call it a Rangefinder and fit it in the same category as most point and shoots – even though it ranks in quality with many DSLRS.
        I dunno, it isn’t a reflex so…Gosh, I might need to do some more reading on definitions.


      • Lol 🙂

        But it’s technically not a only a rangefinder; it has a hybrid, electric viewfinder. And the only thing it has in common with a point and shoot is its fixed lens. Or rather, that its lens is fixed.


      • Of course you are absolutely right. I didn’t mean to put it even on the same planet as those little P&S cameras. But it is closer to many of them in basic use than a DSLR.
        I do feel comfortable using DSLRs, but my wish list has included a X100s since I had a chance to quickly hold one and snap a picture of it’s owner. That two minute moment sold me on the camera. I used it like a P&S, but the owner (a professional with years more experience than me) didn’t.
        Ok, to keep you from flying up here and pounding me I take everything back and will from this moment on call the X100s mirrorless. Please accept my apology my friend.


      • Well… Ok 😉

        Lol! I shoot with an x100, I found out about the x100s literally the day after I purchased my x100.
        That really has never bothered me… much.
        This camera has been so much fun; so versatile, and the low light performance is just incredible.
        I’ve been invited to shoot the Baker Hotel in Mineral Wells TX, and I can’t wait to see what this camera makes of that dark, abandoned building.
        It’s unlikely that I would ever trade the x100, but I will likely upgrade to the Df, because need a full frame.
        I really do.
        When I shoot the baker, I may rent a d800 with an ultra-wide lens just to be prepared. What do you think?


      • That will be fun. I regularly photograph interiors. I use 3 or 4 off-camera wireless lights. I did most of that work with my D2X and a 16-85mm. That combination worked great.
        Now I have the D800e and a 24-70. I expect will be excellent for buildings in and out. You mentioned ultra-wide, remember that too wide will mean you’ll spend lots of time correcting the curved lines on all the sides. If you get that DF, try out the 24-70mm and you’ll not want to ever take it off!


      • My trusty 24-120 – that I used since my days with the Nikon F5 was not a good match. So with regret I sold it…It was great on my D2xs and tested fine on friends D4 and D800, but not my D800e. (in spite of some reviewers – in my experience, the 800 & 800e are different.)
        As a portrait camera the D800e is spectacular. I finally used it on something other than people last November during my trip to La Conner Washington and was sold on it.
        Use as high a shutterspeed as you can. Exceed the old rule of match the focal length to the shutterspeed.
        I am sure you will enjoy the D800.


    • I like that camera also. I have an extreme Nikon fan that really hates it. So if I ever had the cash and chance to get one I’d have to be secretive.

      I will look forward to your purchase and the accompanying pictures and reviews.


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