The Most Unique Christmas Gift Ideas for Photographers

With Christmas fast approaching, the internet is now littered with gift guides, wish lists, and seasonal catalogues. This can sometimes seem confusing and a lot to process, especially when trying to buy someone a gift that is personal, practical, and unique. As the UK's largest online photographic specialist, we have collated a more user-centric gift guide that covers more than just camera accessories.

So throw another log on the fire, pour yourself a mulled wine, and take a peek at our Christmas Gift Guide for 2021!

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How we choose

The first thing to note is that this Gift Guide is not just a list of branded mugs, counterfeit clapperboards, and novelty stocking fillers. Here at Wex, we have combined our own sales data, review metrics, and search demand numbers to craft a comprehensive list of the top products from the entirety of 2021!

But that’s not all. We have wrapped this up with industry-leading experience, professional-level insights, and staff-lead suggestions. 

What is left is not just a list of the most popular products, but a catalogue of what works, what we love, and what will get used well on into the New Year. Remember, photography is not just for Christmas. 

What you need to know

To keep things simple, we have focused the majority of this list on gift ideas that require little to no prior knowledge of photography. In some cases, however, you may need to know the type of camera or brand of photography that your gift recipient is into.  

When a little bit more insight is required, we will guide you through it to guarantee a smooth, hassle-free experience!

And so, on to the ideas...

Gift Cards

What is it?

A voucher to spend the equivalent in the shop it’s for - these can really help photographers get their hands on higher-priced items or choose the items they really want. 

Who’s it good for?

Pretty much anyone who owns a camera! Usually, gift vouchers can seem like a bit of a “get out of jail free card” when it comes to Christmas. But for amateur photographers and videographers, a Wex Gift Voucher could be the helping hand they need to take the leap to going pro!

What you need to know:

All you need to know is how high they sit on Santa’s naughty or nice list; with a selection of £10, £25, and £50 vouchers available (or £100 if they have been extra good). 

Find Wex gifts vouchers here »

Photography gifts under £50


The following gift ideas are all priced under £50. We think they will make the most useful and unique stocking fillers or small gifts for photographers and videographers.


 

What is it?

A lens cap keeper helps stop you from losing your lens cap. It’s a very simple and inexpensive item that all photographers love and use every day when out shooting.

Who’s it good for?

A perfect stocking filler, the Lens Cap Keeper is perfect for amateur photographers, birdwatchers, and anyone who’s prone to misplacing their lens caps.

What you need to know: 

All you need to know is the filter thread diameter of their favoured lenses, which will be written around the edge of the front lens element (mm)

What is it? 

The Editors Keys Keyboard Cover slips over the top of your regular keyboard and highlights all the various shortcuts and hot-keys specific to the piece of software you regularly use. Some of us who use one program more than anything else do find that custom keyboards for that program are more useful than regular ones, but in the case of editors keys covers, they are washable and removable, unlike some sticker packs which wear down and get tatty over time. 

Who is it good for? 

Ideal for video editors, sound designers, student filmmakers, and anyone who is working predominantly with one specific piece of software. 

What you need to know: 

Because all keyboards are different, you need to know what laptop they have. Importantly, you also need to know which software they use. This is because each one is different and shortcuts are bespoke and customisable. 

What is it?

The Camera Bean Bag is quite simply a bean bag - for your camera! It’s a simple idea that is loved by those in the know. The way it works is it creates a pliable but stable surface which is perfect for resting cameras and spotting scopes in locations where a tripod is too impractical or unsubtle. Think toe-level on a sandy beach, or on top of a rocky wall. 

Who is it good for?

Great for wildlife enthusiasts, birdwatchers, and photographers who like to get out and about in nature.

What you need to know:

All you need to know is whether they are into wildlife photography.

What is it? A High-Pressure Duster is compressed gas capable of blasting stubborn dirt and dust from the front of lenses and other optical equipment. It makes a great stocking filler as all photographers have use of them! 

Who is it good for? Anyone with expensive and/or loved camera equipment (although best for cameras with removable lenses).

What you need to know: Nothing other than knowing if they already have a can - but even then, no photographer would be disappointed with a spare one!

What is it?

This is a handy rain cover that scrunches up small and remains packed away until the second you need it in an emergency. The cover is hardy and perfectly shaped so that it protects without stopping the function of the equipment, meaning you can carry on shooting regardless. 

Who is it good for?

A great gift for the more adventurous photographers or videographers who prefer getting out on location to shoot whether that be outdoors or any wet or messy environment. 

What you need to know: 

You need to know the general size of their setup (camera + lens combo). The covers come in small, medium and large. For a regular lens and camera, we would suggest small is fine. For longer, and really long lenses, just move up the sizing accordingly.

What is it?

Spending a long time outside in the cold creates issues for photographers and binocular users. This is because the cold stops you from using some of the finer and more delicate functions, such as feeling the focus wheel move or using smaller buttons.  High-quality photography gloves are designed to be warm but thin giving practicality and functionality, plus they have touch screen compatible thumb and fingers!

Who is it good for?

Wildlife photographers, adventure vloggers, travel photographers and drone pilots. Basically, any who spends time outside. 

What you need to know:

Nothing other than the size - but let’s be honest, some of us are more partial to a nice pair of gloves than others...

What is it?

The TetherTools JerkStopper removes the stress and strain from a cable or cord, ensuring the plug remains secure and is protected from damage. 

Who’s it good for?

This is ideal for freelance videographers and amateur photographers who like to keep their camera setup as tidy as possible. 

What you need to know:

All you need to know is whether they like to use an external monitor or another such accessory that requires a cable connection.

What is it?

The Smartphone Clamp is a simple yet exciting tool that will allow you to mount your smartphone directly to a tripod system. 

Who is it good for?

There are multiple reasons why we like this as a gift, and why you might find it useful. 

Firstly, if you use a smartphone for your photography. This adapter then gives you access to a range of additional pro photographer equipment, such as tripods, gimbals, arms and monopods

Secondly, if you are a more classic photographer. This adapter then provides you with the novel ability to use your smartphone on your camera tripod. Great for quick setups at home, or in the studio, for family photos, birthdays, events etc.

What you need to know:

All you need to know is whether they have access to a tripod, or are looking to purchase one soon.

What is it?

A cable bag is a great way to store and organise camera cables, small camera accessories, and personal items. It is also small enough to fit within a larger backpack or camera gear bag when travelling.  

Who’s it good for?

Great for amateur photographers, video editors, students, freelance creators, and anyone who likes to stay organised on the road. 

What you need to know:

All you need to know is if their camera bag is a tangled mess of cables, loose memory cards, and half-empty batteries - this could be exactly what they need to get organised!

What is it?

Taking a step up from a cable bag, the field pouch is an expandable storage solution for cords, accessories, batteries, hard drives, and so much more. They can strap it to their belt, stuff it in their backpack, or wear it as an ultralight sling bag!

Who’s it good for?

This is ideal for anyone that likes to stay organised with their belongings and digital accessories; whether that be a student, designer, sound engineer, events photographer, or vlogger.

What you need to know:

All you need to know is whether the recipient likes to stay organised when on the move, or whether they could do with a little nudge to finally get their gear in order.

Photography gifts over £50


The following gift ideas are all over £50 and under £200. They would make great main gifts for Christmas or birthdays.


 

What is it?

A graphics tablet replicates the motions of drawing or writing on paper via a pen-like stylus, which allows for the creation of 2D computer graphics, digital artwork manipulation, and image editing. 

Who’s it good for?

An incredibly useful tool for graphic designers, artists, photo editors, bloggers, students, and anyone with a passion for more contemporary artwork.

What you need to know:

All you need to know is if they have access to a laptop or computer system which is either Bluetooth enabled, or has a standard USB Type-A port. 

What is it?

An affordable, user-centric, and pre-assembled telescope that can be used to observe the Moon, Saturn’s rings, and far-off star systems with ease!

Who’s it good for?

Who wouldn’t love an all-in-one, easy to use telescope? This particular model is a great place to start for newbie stargazers, photographers looking to expand their craft, children in awe of the night sky, and retirees with a bit of spare time on their hands. 

What you need to know:

All you need to know is whether this is the right sort of telescope for them. This model requires some pre-existing knowledge of astronomy but stands as a perfect bridge between beginner and amateur. 

What is it?

Put simply, a monopod is a camera support with one singular leg. Often overlooked in favour of larger tripods, a monopod is much lighter, more compact, and incredibly portable.

Who’s it good for?

Ideally suited to birdwatchers, spotting scope users, hikers, urban explorers, as well as wildlife, events, and sports photographers.

What you need to know:

All you need to know is whether a monopod would be the right choice of support. With these particular models having an 8kg capacity, it is best suited to those with either a spotting scope or mirrorless/DSLR + telephoto lens setup.

What is it?

A screen calibrator is one of the more specialised gifts on this list. It essentially measures and adjusts the colour of a computer’s monitor to match a common standard. This is massively beneficial within the world of digital design, as well as pro-level photo and video editing.    

Who’s it good for?

This is a great gift for freelance videographers and photographers looking to build their editing setup at home, or in the studio.  

What you need to know: All you need to know is the type of monitor that they use, as screen calibrators are best used alongside professional monitors and editing setups. Be sure to research the type of calibrator required as there are ones available for smartphones, computers, and pro-level monitors. 

What is it?

A crowd favourite in recent times, the Bushnell Trail Camera is designed to capture wildlife in their natural habitat. Easy and simple to set-up, this affordable and exciting imaging tool enables the documentation of animals unaffected by human interruption. 

Who’s it good for?

Perfect for all the family! This is a seriously great gift for people that live in rural areas, have large gardens, or have big open spaces near to their homes. Essentially, anyone with a love for the outdoors needs to get their hands on a trail camera

What you need to know:

All you need to know is whether they have access to a computer or laptop compatible with SD cards (a separate card reader may be needed). This is because the footage is saved to an SD card (up to 32GB), which can then be transferred to your computer. 

What is it?

The Peak Design Capture + Pro Pad is a unique camera holstering solution that attaches to the belt or camera strap. It is strong enough to hold heavy-set camera setups when photographing events, weddings, and exploring new cities or interior spaces. 

Who’s it good for?

This is a superb option for events, weddings, and portrait photographers that like to switch between two camera setups or require quick access to their gear. It is also well-suited to amateur photographers taking their first steps into freelancing.

What you need to know:

All you need to know is if they use a large DSLR or mirrorless camera setup to shoot still images and whether they usually wear some form of the belt when photographing at events. 

What is it?

The TetherBlock is a cable-tidy that mounts directly between a camera and tripod. The tethered cable is then able to run beneath the camera to protect its ports and the cables from being damaged over time. 

Who’s it good for?

This is great for studio-based photographers, amateur videographers, student filmmakers, and live streamers. 

What you need to know:

All you need to know is whether they use an external monitor whilst taking photos or recording video (tethered shooting). The types of cameras to look out for here are DSLRs and mirrorless systems.

What is it?

The Hahnel ProCube II is an adventure-ready charging station that can simultaneously charge two separate camera batteries. Each model is specific to a certain battery type, and it also comes equipped with interchangeable UK, EU and US plugs.

Who’s it good for?

This is a great gift idea for travelling image-makers, freelance filmmakers, vloggers, and adventure photographers.

What you need to know:

All you need to know is the type of camera that they use, which should be relatively easy to find out. Each colour-coded Hahnel ProCube II will state the compatible camera models within the FAQs section of the product pages. 

What is it?

This Vlogging Kit is packed full of accessories to include the GorillaPod Mobile Rig, Wavo Mobile Mic, and the Beamo Mini LED. 

Who’s it good for?

This is perfect for younger people looking to get into vlogging, stop-motion, journalism, or other forms of content creation. It is also great for small business owners looking to engage in more social media-driven content. 

What you need to know:

This kit is compatible with both smartphones and lightweight camera setups, which makes it an incredibly versatile piece of kit for any and all amateur creatives. 

What is it?

A slightly more generic gift is the LED Ring Light Kit, which is made up of a simple light stand and multi-functional ring light. These have become incredibly popular over recent years and promise to add value to vlogs, makeup and hair tutorials, walkthroughs, headshots, and product shoots. 

Who’s it good for?

Again, this is ideal for young people getting into live streaming, social media content, product photography, and portraiture. 

What you need to know:

The ring light comes with a light stand, so no additional equipment is required. 

(Click here for a more in-depth guide to buying a cheap vlogging camera..)  

Unique Gifts for Photographers

Photographers are not the easiest people to buy gifts for. This is because they know so much about their chosen discipline and love what they do, which pushes them to put in vast amounts of research and even have purchases planned out years in advance!

Sometimes the best and most unique gifts you can give someone is not just a travel tripod, camera accessory, or brand new bag. Instead, it could be something a little more out of the box…

Hiring a Creative Space

This can be anything from creating a DIY production studio at home, to renting out a full photo studio for the day! Something like this could really be the push a young creative needs to think about developing their passion into a professional career.

Renting an Airbnb

Simply taking a trip and putting some time aside to be creative can be exactly what a working professional might need to reignite their love for photography. This could be a long-weekend in London for street photographers, a cabin in the woods for wildlife enthusiasts, or a pre-planned adventure for wannabe travel vloggers.  

Day out at the Zoo

If your gift recipient is pushing for a career in wildlife photography, a more affordable option is to book a trip to the local zoo, animal sanctuary, or wildlife cruise! This will allow them to get some hands-on experience with photographing different, sometimes non-native animals without the hassle of trying to find them first.

Festival Tickets

For music lovers, car enthusiasts, foodies, and everyone in between, there is a festival out there with loads of great opportunities to take quality photos and video content throughout the weekend. This would be an amazing experience for wannabe events, sports, and music photographers, as well as amateur vloggers and content creators looking to take the next step to internet stardom.  

Camping on the Moors

A city-based stargazer would get so much from spending the night with an uninterrupted sky above them. Booking a camping trip to the Brecon Beacons, North York Moors, or Northumberland national park would be an incredible experience for those with a passion for astronomy.   

Repair

Here at Wex, we offer authorised repair services through our sister company Fixation, the largest camera repair specialist in the UK! This would be great for someone with a treasured camera, lens, or flash system that has seen better days - where repairing their equipment could be the nudge they need to get back out behind the camera.

You can take a look at the Fixation Repair website or if you need a hand, give the Repair Team a call on: 020 7383 5127

Rent

Another service we offer is Wex Rental. We have a huge range of kit that’s available for rent from a day to an entire month! Whilst this is a service that is often used by professionals for client commissions, it is also something that can be used to try out equipment before you go ahead with that all important purchase. Is there a piece of equipment that often gets sprinkled into conversations? Has your special person been umming and ahhing over their next lens for a while? Well, have a look and see if you can hire it out for them to try before they buy!

You can take a look at the Wex Rental website or if you need a hand, give the Rental Team a call on: 020 7383 5127.


 

The Gift of Time

Perhaps the most simple of gifts and yet, one of the most thoughtful. Perhaps the stresses and responsibilities of daily life, childcare or chores are getting in the way of creativity. Offer the gift of time by taking over those jobs for an afternoon. Give that special person the gift of time to roam around, carefree with their camera. 

This has been put forwards as a recommendation more than any other gift but our Wex staff (seems that we have a lot of parents working for us)!


Gift Guide: Video


In the following video, Amy walks us through the various parts of a common digital camera and explains the various aspects. This will help know what to buy and be sure it's compatible. 


Gift FAQs

Q: What are the essentials every photographer should have?

A: Someone’s photography gear bag can be as simplified or as complicated as they choose to make it!

If you also dabble in photography and have some knowledge of the industry, some great essentials to look into include: tripods, flashguns, flash diffusers, memory card readers, colour checkers, and collapsible reflector kits. If you are in the market for something a little simpler that is sure to go down well with that special someone, be sure to check out the following: lens cloths, camera bags, portable storage devices, hand warmers, gloves, or even just a pen and paper.

Q: What’s a good gift for a mobile phone photographer?

A: With Smartphone technology rapidly progressing, mobile phone photography is more popular than ever. Smartphone cameras and the AI systems that process the image data are so advanced that they can even rival some compact cameras in image quality. 

So, if you know someone who is into taking photos and videos with their phone, a great present would be something that can take that to the next level. You should be looking at mini tripods, gimbal systems, cases or phone clamps. These accessories allow you to use your smartphones more like a traditional camera, helping you capture smooth, stabilised video footage or shake-free images. 

Q: How do you find out the compatibility listings for certain photography equipment?

A: This is where things can get a little complicated. The best thing to do is to break the surprise early and talk to the person before making a big investment; just to confirm that the gifted product will be compatible with their current camera equipment. 

If you are still unsure, or want to keep everything a little bit more hush hush, the best thing to do is to contact our Customer Service team or take a trip to one of our Wex stores