Gifts for Beginner Photographers 2021

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It can be tough to find the right thing when looking for gifts for photography beginners, as you can never be sure whether your choice will fit their camera or style of photography.

So that you don’t make the wrong choice when choosing gifts for amateur photographers, whether cheap gifts for photographers, Christmas gifts for photographers, or gifts for new photographers, I’ve put together this list of equipment for beginner photographers that is suitable for all budgets and photo styles.

These gifts for photography enthusiasts are aimed more at those that already have a camera, but if you are looking to buy someone a camera to practice with, then I would recommend checking out my articles on the best DSLRs for beginners, and the best cameras under $300 for my current recommendations.

Gifts for beginner photographers

Gifts for Beginner Photographers

The best gifts for beginner photographers are those that can be used across many different camera brands, so most of these gift ideas are suitable for all photographers, regardless of the camera they use. But you don’t just have to think about physical products – there are some excellent learning resources that will also be a huge help to brand new photographers.

1. Phlearn Membership

phlearn membership

Phlearn offer the best courses to learn photo editing in Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom. Pretty much every photographer worth their salt uses Photoshop and Lightroom, but the learning curve can be very steep.

Phlearn show you what is possible, and with a fixed yearly price to access all their excellent tutorials, any beginner photographer would highly value this subscription.

2. 123 Presets for Lightroom

123Presets gift membership

If the photographer in your life is at all interested in editing their photos on their computer, they will surely already own Adobe’s Lightroom software. The Lightroom presets from 123 Presets are among the very best in the industry, and help you unlock the power of your photos.

Until 28 Feb 2022, get 30% off with code WINTER30

3. Skylum Luminar AI

Skylum make a fantastic AI-assisted photo editing program that gives you real control over how you edit your photos, with the option to add skies, make complex edits and much more.

Best yet, there is no learning curve with Luminar AI, giving you the power to edit your images to your liking, right from the start.

4. SmugMug Membership

photography gifts

One of the most popular ways for photographers to show off their portfolio of images is through SmugMug, an easy to use online portfolio website builder. You can now open a SmugMug account on a photographer’s behalf, then send them the login details on a holiday card.

5. Peak Design Field Pouch v2

gifts for photography beginners

Peak Design are one of the top producers of camera accessories, with the Field Pouch v2 their latest version of lightweight, value for money camera bag.

This is an ideal gift idea as everyone needs a good bag to carry their camera and lenses, and you won’t get better than Peak Design.

6. Torjim Aluminum Travel Tripod

travel tripod

Tripods are one of the most useful photo accessories and therefore make excellent gifts.

Many cheap models don’t last, or lack features that photographers need, but this Torjim model is the best tripod for beginner photographers.

7. Peak Design Slide Strap

Peak Design Slide strap, photography gift for beginners

Many photographers agree that the Peak Design slide strap is one of the best that they have ever used.

It clips to your camera easily with a unique Anchor Link system and gets out of the way, with plenty of adjustments and a soft feel to the nylon webbing. Any photographer would thank you for this.

8. Canon Selphy Portable Printer

Canon Selphy, photo printer for amateur photographers

An excellent portable photo printer that lets anyone print out their photos for immediate use, the Selphy is a brilliant device.

If you know a photographer that wants to show off their photos, but hasn’t got round to printing any, then this is the gift to jump start them!

9. Neewer 50-in-1 GoPro Accessory Kit

GoPro accessory kit, gifts for action photographers

Ideal for those with a GoPro or other action camera, this 50-in-1 kit provides pretty much everything you need for action photography, including a mini tripod and selfie stick, and various harnesses for your action camera.

10. Peak Design Lens Pouch

Peak Design pouch, beginner photography gift

One risk for all photographers is the potential for lenses to get scratched when they are in your bag, but the Range Pouch keeps your lenses safe and secure in the best possible way.

This model even comes with belt loops, so that it can be mounted for easy access through the hook and loop closure mechanism.

11. LED Studio Lights

LED lights gift for beginner studio photographers

If you know a budding food or studio photographer, then these LED lights are both cheap and practical, offering powerful lighting in multiple colors.

They let you light up a scene for video recording or for photography, and can be a very helpful first step in setting up a home studio.


Cheap Gifts for Photographers

These gifts are lower priced than those above, but still offer something that beginner photographers will value.

12. Photo Reflectors

gifts for food photographers

Photo reflectors are very useful for studio or portrait photographers, or even those who just want to take photos of their families.

They let you direct light in exactly the right shade and brightness, which is key to creating fantastic photos. These are also the perfect gifts for food photographers.

13. Photography Idea Cards

photography idea cards, cheap photography gift idea

If your beginner photographer is lacking inspiration, or wants to expand their creative mindset, then these idea cards, containing 72 unique photography themes or challenges are ideal.

Each card also has its own hashtag, meaning that you can see the photos others have taken with your card on social media, providing even more inspiration.

14. Cheat Sheets for Beginner Photographers

photo cheat sheets for beginner photographers

If you feel that the photographer in your life needs some help to get to grips with choosing an aperture, shutter speed, ISO or the like, then these cheat sheets can be invaluable.

They are small enough to take into the field, and contain lots of very useful information, which will always be to hand.

15. LensPen Cleaning Device

LensPen cleaning device

Everyone gets fingerprints and dirt on their lenses, which negatively impacts image quality. LensPen gives you up to 500 uses when cleaning your lenses, and removes all marks and dirt. This is really a perfect gift for every photographer.

16. Lens Coffee Mug

Lens coffee mug gift for photographers

This fun, lens shaped and sized coffee mug can be used for any hot drink, plus works well for smoothies or cold drinks with its insulated interior. Combined with a no-spill lid, this is one of the top gifts for photographers and coffee lovers, which is surely most people!


Unique Gifts for Photographers

If you are looking for unique gifts for photographers, or cool gifts for photographers, then you can’t go wrong with any of these, which also make good gifts for beginner photographers.

17. Fujifilm Instax Mini Camera

Fuji Instax mini camera

One of the more expensive gifts in this list is the Fuji Instax, a retro-style camera where your photos are instantly printed through a slot in the side of the camera.

This is a really fun gift for beginner photographers, that lets you see your photos in printed form as soon as they are taken, which is very useful for learning.

18. Hot Shoe Bubble

perfect gift for a photographer

Hot shoe bubbles are a fun (and cheap) accessory that attaches to your camera’s hot shoe, so you can see at a glance whether your camera is level.

These are surprisingly useful for all photographers and are a particularly welcome gift for travel photographers, giving a unique look to anyone’s camera.

19. Joby GorillaPod

Joby gorillapod unique gift for photographers

The GorillaPod is an adaptable tripod that has lasted for years in many photographer’s possession.

It lets you set up your tripod on ground unsuitable for a regular tripod, wrapping the legs around a fence or other object to provide stability, and it’s light, cheap and easy to use – perfect for beginner photographers.

20. Lens Crystal Balls

Crystal balls for photography

These crystal balls are affordable, and give you a new perspective on the world. Looking through them with your camera, you can create unique photos that others would struggle to make!


Best Books for Beginner Photographers

One of the best gifts for a photographer friend is a book for beginner photographers. These give guided learning, and have been pretty much every photographer’s starting point.

21. Digital Photography Complete Course

best book for beginner photographers

A complete 20-week course in one hardcover book makes this book from DK my pick for the best book for beginner photographers.

Full of really useful, detailed info, including diagrams and real photos to illustrate each point, you will quickly learn everything needed to get up to speed on digital photography.

22. Stunning Digital Photography

stunning digital photography book

Tony and Chelsea Northrup are two of the most popular photo instructors on YouTube, amassing a large following with their detailed and easy to follow advice.

This book includes 20 hours of their excellent tutorial videos, so will help those photographers who learn best by watching.


Read More:

The best gifts for photographers under $50


Best Tips for Beginner Photographers

For those just starting out on their photography journey and who are looking for the best tips for beginner photographers to help their editing, then I would recommend checking out some of my top free tutorials below.

The Digital Blending Workflow Tutorial

The Landscapes Masterclass: No HDR, No Plugins

This long form guide contains a complete workflow for one landscape photo, giving you detailed tips, tricks and guides on how to perfect your landscape photos through digital blending, using the tools in Lightroom and Photoshop

Lightroom Tutorial - Adding Color Depth with White Balance

Using targeted white balance adjustments, you can enhance sunrises, paint in new sunsets, make stormy skies pop, create stylised effects, and much more, all with very little time and effort. Learn how to do this entirely in Lightroom

Photoshop Tutorial - Blend Any Two Photos

This tutorial covers methods of blending in five common landscape situations: Multiple Exposure Blending; Time Blending; Object Blending; Double-Process Blending; Blending Skies. These powerful methods will help you blend photos in any situation.

Color Control in Your Photography Tutorial

“I’ve blended my exposures, but my photo still doesn’t look like how I want it to look. Now what?” Learn a two-and-a-half minute, Photoshop based workflow to fix both colour and tone in this long form tutorial and video series.

Northern Lights Photography Tutorial

This guide covers how to see the Northern Lights – when, & where, the ideal camera equipment you should use, the camera settings you need to get perfect photos, and how to process your photos to get something you can be proud of, along with much more…
Follow Tim Daniels:

Hi, I'm Tim Daniels, photographer and photo trainer, founder of Lapse of the Shutter and creator of the totally free Lightroom Develop System. I've travelled to (probably) 30 countries over the last few years, taking photos and licensing them around the world, and creating lots of free photography learning resources. Read More ...

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