Tis' the Season to think about and agonize over the perfect gift(s) for your favorite shutterbug. To help you make wise and affordable decisions I have decided to compile a list of items that every photographer (amateur or pro) shouldn't be without.
SERVICE PARTS TOOL CASE - $16.99 Frys Electronics
This is a GREAT organizer! I have one for my various screws, nuts, bolts, and all of my spare tripod rail and mounting accessories. EVERYTHING fits because it is two sided and it comes with removable trays that you can arrange on one side and the other side features a series of slotted trays that you can adjust. Add a $1.99 tube of super-glue to the package - to glue the little slot dividers into their place - and you've got a comfortable, easy to store and carry little case. You can even use zip ties or nylon cord through the handles to make sure it doesn't pop open while you're traveling. ORGANIZATION IS A MUST FOR ANY PHOTOGRAPHER - It may not be as sexy as a lens but to a true camera geek - it's gonna make them really happy!
TAMRAC N-25 NEOPRENE QUICK RELEASE STRAP - $20.99 Amazon.com
A good strap is a must for any photographer - but this IS NOT a good strap... it's a GREAT strap. The neoprene design flexes and gives as you move - this absorbs energy from the weight of the camera as you are moving and it actually makes slinging a camera and lens around your neck and walking much more comfortable - and it better protects the camera. I've had one of these blue straps for over 10 years and it's going strong. I actually have 3 of them... because the quick release feature is so awesome. I have quick ends on several camera bodies and large lenses - that way I can "plug in" the strap as needed. It's a great system if you are managing several bodies, etc... and want to be able to quickly remove the strap to get it out of your way.
PELICAN HARD MEMORY CARD CASE - $24.99 Fry's Electronics
Starting to see a theme here? Organization is a must for any photographer. Knowing where your gear is in the field or during any event where you are trying to "capture the moment", you need to be organized and efficient. Pelican is THE NAME in water-tight, hard shell, ergonomic, nearly indestructible cases and this addition to their product line is no different. Pre-cut with a number of inserts for several different card sizes; it's sure to put the smile on any hard-core camera-geek or photo-lover on your Holiday shopping list.