Tales From The Camera Bag: December

Tales From The Camera Bag: DecemberAh December, the season of giving, getting and doing. With that in mind, what do you give to the photographer in your life? Let’s start with stocking stuffers. One item every photographer needs is the lens brush pen, a simple device, but very valuable. On one end of the pen is a fibre brush the lifts the dust and lint off the lens much more effectively than a lens cloth. On the other end, under the cap, is a carbon charged tip that is designed to clean your lens and viewfinder safely. It is best to avoid the cheaper products as I always wonder whether these products are “lens safe”.  I would also purchase a box of Zeiss (or other trusted brand) lens cleaning wipes which are safe for multi-coated lens.  Another stocking stuffer idea is a wired remote control which would allow the photographer to make long exposure images. An infrared remote also comes in handy if the photographer wants to be included in the image.
 The other day we set out as a group to do some urban photography in uptown Saint John; as we all wanted to be nimble no one brought a tripod for the group shot, with the exception of the small one I happened to have in my pocket. These little guys are inexpensive and so handy!  I also carry a micro fibre cloth with me and, right now, I have a larger Yoga towel in my bag.  This is a large towel to carry, but great for wrapping the whole camera during those foggy or drizzly day shoots. Two other items I often use are a headlamp (aka, a geek light) with a “red light component” in it for night photography, and a utility tool. I made sure that my utility tool included the tools that would allow me to adjust my tripod and secure my mounting plates to the base of my camera.  All these items are easily stuffed into a sock, will be very much appreciated by any photographer in your life and can be found for under $50 each.
 I won’t get into the more expensive gear like tripods, cameras, lenses, etc as these things are often researched at nauseum by the photographer so unless they are very specific with their request a donation of a wheelbarrow of $$$ might be a better idea.

  There you have a few ideas on the “getting and giving”, how about the doing? Christmas decorations offer an opportunity to help cope with the winter blues and the noise around Christmas. Consider, taking close up or macro shots of the tree, like the reflection of your big nose in a bulb, just to make your grandkids laugh. Or get funky shots by zooming in or out while shooting the tree.

 From our home to yours, we hope you all have a happy and safe holiday season full of love and laughter.