The list of gear required for a photographer is truly endless. Sometimes it can be hard to know where to start. That's why I compiled a list of the best gifts for photographers and video editors, so you don't have to. From technical gear like lenses and microphones to more fun gifts like LED lights, this is my list of some of the best pieces on the market to buy for the photographer or video editor in your orbit.
The 35 Best Gifts for Photographers and Video Editors
Need to buy something for the creative in your life? We've got you covered.
1. Tmango Camera Lens Coffee Mug
I love filmmaking and storytelling; this is such a fun gift for creatives of all ages to fuel those long days behind a computer screen. Just don’t mix up the lens and the mug when you’re throwing your dishes into the kitchen sink!
2. Sony a7 III ILCE7M3/B Full-Frame Mirrorless Interchangeable-Lens Camera
I’ve used the Sony a7s ii for years, literally. Sony checks all the boxes for a do-it-all camera. The interchangeable lens capability means you can customize it how you want, while the built-in SteadyShot capability stabilizes all of your shots (which is great for that classic run and gun style us documentary filmmakers tend to shoot). I’ve been thoroughly pleased with Sony’s mirrorless cameras and I’m excited for all the things to come.
3. Canon EF Lens to Sony E Mount T Smart Adapter
Say you’ve already invested money into your Sony A7III but you just saw an amazing Canon lens that you absolutely need to use. That’s where this adapter comes in; this handy adapter allows you to use Canon lenses on your Sony setup. Plus, I prefer Canon glass so I just use this metabones adapter—only downside is auto focus doesn’t work with the adapter, it’s all manual.
4. Sennheiser Pro Audio Sennheiser AVX Digital
You can’t underestimate the importance of good audio for creating strong video content. These are the most reliable wireless lav mics to date. You can plug them right into your camera, there’s no syncing needed. The audio is so good that you could use these for your podcasts as well!
5. Rode VideoMic GO Lightweight On-Camera Microphone
For those moments when we need good audio quickly—and there’s multiple people in the scene—this is a great run and gun mic. While the Sennheiser requires you to mic up your talent, this model connects to your camera, increasing the audio quality from a remote recording location.
6. Blue Yeti Microphone (Blackout) with Knox Gear Pop Filter
For voiceover or other standalone audio, Yeti is still one of the best in its class. It’s so simple to use, plug it in and go! Coupled with the pop filter (you don’t want those Ts to be too cutting), the Blue Yeti is a great option.
7. SanDisk 32GB Ultra SDHC UHS-I Memory Card
The worst feeling in the world: you’ve captured what you needed to capture, emotions are high and then the files are corrupt or, even worse, the card breaks. SanDisk memory cards have been the most reliable to date. This model is great for less extensive shoots, but if you need a lot of space, consider the next option on the list.
8. SanDisk 128GB Extreme PRO SDXC UHS-I Card
This disk is double the size of the above, which makes it a good option for longer shoots that require more storage.
9. JOBY GorillaPod Mobile Vlogging Kit
As far as “all-in-one” style kits go, you can’t really get better than Joby’s mobile vlogging kit. It comes with all the materials you need to create a semi professional vlogging setup with nothing more than your iPhone camera. This is an awesome gift choice for someone looking into starting to make video content. It can hold your microphones and you could even get phone extensions as well.
10. Peak Design Everyday Backpack 30L
Photography requires a lot of gear, so a vessel for your equipment might be just as important as the equipment itself. The Peak Design Everyday Backpack is a great minimalist option for transporting your gear, all wrapped up in a sleek package.
11. Joby JB01507 GorillaPod 3K Kit
Joby makes a great tripod. This compact edition is amazing because of its convenience, but it’s also just an all-around great, steady tripod.
12. Adobe Creative Cloud
The Adobe Creative Cloud is an often overlooked gift for the burgeoning creative. It’s fairly expensive, but it’s truly one of the best ways to help jumpstart someone’s video/photo editing career, giving them access to a wide array of tools, tutorials and more to help them start their journey.
13. Apple iPhone 12
This is the most powerful tool on this list. Both the iPhone’s camera and internal editing software available should not be underestimated. In 2020, you don’t need an insanely expensive camera in order to take amazing pictures or videos. It’s wildly underrated.
14. Lume Cube Panel GO + DSLR Mount
The Lume Cube Panel is a pocket-sized mounted LED light for shoots that require a little extra customization. You can adjust from 1-100% brightness and transition between warm and cool lighting, giving you a wide array of lighting options to get the right shot.
15. UBeesize 10" Selfie Ring Light
This Selfie Ring is an integral part of a strong vlogging setup. The ring light can improve the lighting of your selfie shot from weak to near-professional, giving you a bright light that will improve the contrast and detail in your shots.
16. Canon EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM Standard Zoom Lens
This is the all-in-one lens that I use the most. I love its versatility, it can be used at a great distance and provides superb depth of field.
17. Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM Medium Telephoto Lens for Canon SLR Cameras - Fixed
If you know anything about lenses then there’s not much explanation needed; the overall quality is insane! This lens is great for headshots and landscape shots alike.
18. Canon EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM Lens - 9518B002
If you’re trying to add some fun wide shots into your shoots, this lens is unparalleled. Wide lenses are so much fun to shoot with. The shots come out crispy clear!
19. Bose Noise Cancelling Wireless Bluetooth Headphones 700
Proper video editing requires a good pair of headphones. Especially with the escalation of remote work in 2020, you might be needing a pair of cans that will cancel out the sound around you. Look no further than the Bose Noise Cancelling headphones, which feature great quality and can help eliminate the pesky disturbances of a work from home setup. These are my FAVORITE headphones so far, because of how lightweight and compact they are. The battery life is insane!
20. Apple AirPods with Charging Case (Wired)
Airpods are controversial; some say there are better quality options on the market at the same price point. That may be true, but there are few options around that are more convenient to use on the go. That’s why they make our list; if you need something convenient for listening to music, a podcast or audio from a shoot, then AirPods are the best option for listening on the go.
21. Kiorafoto Professional Water-Resistant Anti-Shock Holder Storage
This is the best way to not lose your memory cards. Memory cards are fragile, so a good protector for your cards should not be overlooked. This water-resistant option from Kiorafoto can hold up to 12 cards and is easily connected to a carabiner. This is an affordable but priceless purchase.
22. Manfrotto Travel Befree Live Aluminium Tripod Twist
While some of the JOBY tripods on this list are convenient, mobile options for your iPhone, you’ll also need a true tripod for your more serious shoots. This is one of the best options on the market.
23. Manfrotto Xpro Aluminum Video Monopod with 500 Series Video Head
If you’re seeking a bit more agility and freedom on your shoots instead of the stable tripod above, you might want to consider a monopod—this is great for some of your more “run-and-gun” shots!
24. Apple Macbook Pro
Another Apple product to make this list, the MacBook Pro is a great option for photographers and video editors to revise their content. Couple this with the Adobe suite and you’ll be making professional quality edits in no time. I mean, come on, it’s Apple!
25. LaCie Rugged Mini 4TB External Hard Drive Portable HDD
While the SD cards on this list will hold your images locally on your camera, you’ll need a larger hard drive to house all of your projects. The LaCie hard drive is best in its class; the 4 TB version is a great option to store tons of projects, and the drive’s durability makes it easier to carry around than some of the more fragile options on the market.
26. SanDisk 1TB Extreme PRO Portable SSD
Although this drive isn’t as large as the above LaCie (1 TB vs. 4 TB), it’s extremely portable, making it a great option for a drive you take with you everywhere. If you travel a lot and you’re tired of all those clunky drives you’ll love these hard drives!
27. DJI Mavic Air 2 - Drone Quadcopter UAV
In 2020, a videographer’s setup isn’t complete without a drone. If you want to get those jaw-dropping aerial shots, you’ll need a good drone cam. The Mavic Air 2 is an amazing option; from its tracking capabilities to its ability to capture high-definition shots, this drone is a great choice for anyone needing to get some images from a bird’s eye view. Safe flying!
28. Neewer 2.6M x 3M/8.5ft x 10ft Background Support System
This kit from Neewer includes pretty much everything you need to set up a studio. Between the backdrops, lighting options and all the necessary stands, with one purchase you’ll have everything you need to complete amazing product shoots or interview-style content in front of a green screen.
29. Logitech MX Master Wireless Mouse
The job of a photographer and video editor doesn’t end with the click of a shutter, you’ll also spend copious amounts of time on your computer poring over your images. For those days, a good mouse is paramount. This entry from Logitech is comfortable, responsive and easy to set up. THIS IS MY ALL TIME FAVORITE MOUSE! And it’s not even close!
30. SmallHD Focus HDMI 5" Touch Screen Camera Monitor Kit
Depending on the camera you’re using, you may need a supplemental monitor during your shoots to get the best real-time picture of your subject. Look no further than the SmallHD Focus, a 5” LCD monitor that provides great picture, even in harsh daylight.
31. Led Lights Smart Led Strip Lights
Although these aren’t intended specifically for photography, the potential uses for LED smart lights are endless. You can use them to create interesting color palettes in a shoot, or just hang on to them to spruce up the lighting in your home. Who doesn’t like a moody vibe when editing?
32. Autonomous Ergo Chair 2 - Premium Ergonomic Office Chair
For those long days of editing, you’ll want a great office chair to keep you comfortable. The Autonomous Ergo Chair fits the bill; sit in it once and you’ll never want to go back to your old hunched-over lifestyle. I didn’t invest until this year and I wish I did it years ago. This chair is a life saver.
33. Fully Remi Standing Desk
I’m a big fan of standing desks, but why not enjoy the benefits of standing and sitting? Being cooped up behind your monitor can take a toll on your back, so wouldn’t it be great to get to stand up and work for a bit? That’s where the Fully Remi Standing Desk comes in. You can sit behind it for as long as you want and then adjust the height to standing-level when you need to get on your feet.
34. Apple New Apple iPad Pro (12.9-inch, Wi-Fi, 256GB)
The iPad is a great tool for drawing, sketching and ideating on your productions as well as creating graphic assets. Why not have something you can use to watch Netflix on while simultaneously editing graphics? It’s basically a second monitor and an easy way to remain mobile and take breaks from working at the desktop all the time! Change up your scenery!
35. Apple New Apple Watch Series 6
The Apple Watch has numerous capabilities that allow for more freedom on your shoots. It’ll keep you off your phone, so that you can focus on your gear and the shoot ahead. I use it to timestamp a lot of my shoots. If I want to remember something at a specific time, I’ll capture the time but also be able to monitor my calendar for those high paced days. Hustle mode on!