We all know that cameras make fantastic gifts for Mom on Mother's Day (or on birthdays and holidays as well!), but what if Mom is already a photographer? B&H Photo has you more than covered!
Is Mom a professional photojournalist? Is she the designated shutterbug for the local Scout troop? Maybe she is totally into floral macro photos, or is Mom responsible for the awesome family portraits that are framed on the mantle and hang on the wall?
Regardless of her photographic passions, there are always great gifts in all price ranges that can make her Mother's Day special and help make her photographic experiences a little more unique.
1. Strappy Straps
Almost every camera in the world comes with its own camera strap. The world, and Mom, are not in short supply of camera straps. But is Mom always dressed to the nines and fashion forward, while walking around with the default camera strap emblazoned with the camera company's logo on it? Well, it's time to stop giving the camera company free advertising and letting Mom walk around with a strap that clashes with her latest outfit.
B&H has literally hundreds of camera-strap options from dozens of manufacturers. Check out the funky "Rose Baroque" design on this Capturing Couture Boho Camera Strap or, if Mom is a leather aficionado, the ONA Presidio Camera Strap has materials and construction that will put her expensive handbags to shame.
2. A "50mm" Lens
If Mom is relatively new to photography, there is a good chance she is shooting with a "kit" zoom lens or lenses. There is nothing wrong with that, and Mom is probably getting great shots, but you can surprise her by letting her unbox a brand new 50mm lens on Mother's Day. Most camera manufacturers make inexpensive 50mm f/1.8 lenses that will outperform the kit zooms that Mom is carrying around right now.
Examples of these lenses include the Nikon AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8G lens, the Sony FE 50mm f/1.8, and the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM lens. If Mom shoots an APS-C-format Nikon, she will love the Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.8G lens that gives a 35mm equivalent field of view as a 50mm lens on a full-frame camera. If you don't know what 50mm lens to get Mom, be sure to give us a call or email [email protected]!
3. Creative Views
Is Mom a creative photographer? Help her expand her creative touch with a lens from Lensbaby.
The California company has a treasure trove of unique lenses on the market that give super shallow depth-of-field effects, selective focus, artistic blurring, glowing softness, etc. Check out the entire line and look at example photos to see what the lenses can help Mom achieve.
The Lensbaby Composer Pro II with Edge 35 Optic presents a new focal length for the Edge line of optics that I tested here. And, for a more traditional shooter, the Lensbaby Velvet 56mm f/1.6 lens looks and feels like a conventional lens, yet, when the aperture is set wide open, the lens creates an ethereal quality in the images that you really cannot replicate easily in digital post production. Check out my review of the Velvet here, and Jill Waterman's take here.
4. Mom Has Got a Brand-New Bag!
OK, so this is a tough one. Mom is likely going to want to go one way or another (or both ways) on this path, so be careful and be ready to do some sleuthing and use the powers of observation and good judgement. Mom will either be into the classic camera bag—usually black ballistic nylon—or she might be the type who wants to accessorize her look with a more fashionable leather or canvas bag.
Again, B&H has hundreds of options here. Too many, if you ask me! Kelly Moore makes a great line of bags designed with women in mind, like The Weekender 2.0 Oversized Tote that even carries a laptop, as well. The more traditional camera bag is represented by models like the black Lowepro Nova 180 AW II Shoulder Bag, with its rugged nylon-and-polyester exterior. If you want to walk the line between fashion and hard-core shooter bag, the Domke F-2 RuggedWear Shooter's Bag is based on Domke's classic reportage design, but with a unique waxed-canvas exterior.
5. Global View
So, Mom already has a camera, but she probably doesn't have a camera like the Ricoh THETA Z1 51GB 360 Camera. Give her the creative tool needed to capture 360-degree spherical photos and 4K videos of her assignments, or gatherings of friends and families at home. Even when she is armed with a traditional camera, adding the Ricoh THETA V to her quiver will allow truly unique capture of any subject or environment.
After she takes the videos or photos, they can be shared with the Ricoh app or website, and everyone viewing can scroll and zoom around the image—up, down, right, left—there is nothing that was not captured in the shot.
6. Protection from the Wet
Not all family events occur when the weather is fair. Parents (and kids) know that some sports, like soccer or football, are played rain or shine. Shine isn't the problem. For Moms taking photos on the sidelines, rain can ruin your whole day. Let yours be one of the few on the field still getting the great shots with rain protection for her camera and lens.
Again, we have many to choose from, but this Ruggard Fabric Rain Shield is great for protecting a DSLR and long lens.
7. Make Mom the Coolest Videographer in the Neighborhood
If you haven't seen the DJI Pocket 2 Gimbal in the flesh, get ready to fall in love with its cuteness. Small, light, and supremely portable, the DJI Pocket 2 Gimbal is a 4K video camera that gives Mom absolutely no excuses not to carry it with her wherever she goes—there is a reason it is called "Pocket." Stabilized 4K video from a device that you could fit almost anywhere and that connects to your smartphone for expanded capabilities.
8. Polarize that Lens
Before digital photography, lens filters for special effects were popular. But, today, Mom can emulate many different effects on the computer after the photo is taken, except for one—polarization.
The polarizing filter remains virtually unchallenged by the digital realm and, if Mom wants darker blue skies, clouds that pop, and less glare in her photos, the only way to do that is to spin a polarizer on the end of her lens.
So, when Mom isn't looking, dig into her camera bag, figure out the filter size she needs for her favorite lens, and grab a polarizer like this Tiffen 77mm Circular Polarizing Filter.
9. The Best Phone Cameras Are on a New Phone
A sure-fire hit with Mom is a gift that allows her to keep in touch with you—a new smartphone! With the latest smartphone technology, she can create epic images and send them to you or post them on social media with so much as a click and a swipe!
10. The Pen is Mightier than the Mouse
OK, here is one you probably weren't thinking of, and neither was Mom. Is she spending a great deal of time post-processing her photos on the computer? Is she into intricate and creative Photoshop techniques and tricks? Well, a Wacom tablet might be just what she needs to speed her workflow and step up her editing game.
The pen, at least for those of us who didn't grow up with an electronic rodent under hand, is much more intuitive than the mouse and, once Mom gets used to it, she might ditch the mouse altogether. There is a learning curve for tablets like the Wacom Intuos Pro Creative Pen Tablet, but ride that curve and you will be rewarded. Check out my article on photographers and Wacom tablets here.
Are you a mom, or is your mom a photographer? We would love to hear your thoughts on what gifts are great to get! Let us know in the Comments section, below. For more information on these products, click through to their pages on our e-commerce website.