Forget the obvious choices of books and cameras – here’s a list of thoughtful presents for lovers of photography
Stuck for what to buy this Christmas? We can help! In the following list, we round up a selection of trinkets, mugs, games, and more that will appeal to those with a keen interest in photography. But, if nothing here stands out to you, then don’t fret – most bookshops and publishers offer gift cards, including Mack, Loose Joints, Setanta, and more. Or, for the gift that keeps on giving, you can always sign your loved one up for a BJP Subscription!
Jigsaw puzzles by Martin Parr
Martin Parr Foundation’s online shop has plenty of gifts on offer, including a choice of two jigsaw puzzles. “The yellow one” is a classic Parr image taken in Benidorm, 1997, and “the blue one” an iconic shot made in Tenby, Wales, 2018. Both come with a signed folded poster to help you complete the puzzle. The foundation is also selling Christmas card packs – the Santa edition, and Poultry edition.
£20 – £30
There’s a number of photographic calendars on offer this year. For people who like saturated colours and absurd aesthetics, Toilet Paper magazine’s 2023 calendar could be a good fit. For fans of black and white or landscape photography, go for this Ansel Adams calendar. Deadbeat Club’s 2023 calendar with Todd Hido has already sold out on their online shop, but if you live in the UK, there’s a few left in stock at The Photographers’ Gallery bookshop.
Deadbeat Club’s mugs, t-shirts, hats and more…
£15 – £40
As well as its annual calendar, LA-based publisher and coffee roaster Deadbeat Club produce a range of apparel. Their tongue-in-cheek slogan will resonate with anyone working in book publishing.
Handcrafted bookends by OROS and Chose Commune
These elegant bookends would make the perfect gift for a photobook collector. A collaboration between artisan wood-worker OROS and book publisher Chose Commune, the limited edition ‘Affinités’ bookends are handcrafted in the south of France. The founders of the respective companies wanted to create a unique object that would reflect their respective backgrounds – woodwork and book publishing – as well as their “shared aesthetic awareness”.
Photoworks’ Festival in a box
When Covid-19 hit, Brighton-based charity Photoworks had to rethink the model of the traditional festival. The result was a “Covid-proof” outdoor exhibition, and the opportunity to experience it at home: the Festival in a box. Containing prints that fold out in varying sizes, as well as wall labels and texts to supplement them, the “portable festival” enables viewers to take on the role of the curator in their own home, deciding where and how to install it.
Sign your loved one up to become a Photoworks Friend, and they’ll receive discounts on photobooks, educational resources, invitations to events, and the latest edition of the Festival in a box – Photoworks Festival: From Little Acorns.
A rare, one-off gift from Climax
£50 – £300
Set up by former Dazed editor Isabella Burley in 2020, cult store Climax specialises in rare art books, VHS tapes, erotica and countercultural ephemera. Current stock includes an early photobook by Araki, postcards from Cindy Sherman’s 1994 campaign for Comme des Garçon, and a folded invitation to Robert Mapplethorpe’s 1979 exhibition of Just Photographs. This limited edition baby-tee in collaboration with Heaven by Marc Jacobs is a winner for the fashion girlies. Or if you’re stuck for what to get, the Christmas gift card is an object in and of itself.
A print in support of the Centre for British Photography
£70 per print
This print sale includes work by world renowned photographers including Heather Agyepong, Karen Knorr, Sunil Gupta, Sian Davey, Craig Easton, Jim Mortram, Ken Grant, and more. The sale is a fundraiser in support of the new Centre for British Photography, due to open in London in January 2023. A charitable initiative set up by the Hyman Foundation, the new space will host exhibitions and public events, aiming to become a “dedicated home for British photography in all its diversity”.
The Street Photography Challenge
“Capture a reflection, play with layers, blatantly blur, or just try and ‘shoot nothing’”. The Street Photography Challenge is a boxed set of 50 cards, each with a simple prompt or idea. A perfect gift for a budding photographer, it also includes 10 bonus cards of inspirational quotes by legends of street photography like Daido Moriyama and Joel Meyerowitz.
Duncan Wooldridge’s Photo-dice
This artwork-slash-game is a boxed set of five dice. Each roll will describe a set of parameters that leads to a photograph. Made by writer and academic Duncan Wooldridge, the Photo-dice provokes questions about the medium’s relation to chance and control. You can buy them via the artist’s website, or in store at The Photographers’ Gallery, Fotografiska and Jeu de Paume.
National Art Pass
£73/year or £45 for under 30s
The National Art Pass enables free entry to hundreds of museums, galleries and historic houses across the UK, as well as 50% off major exhibitions. The membership comes with a guidebook explaining where you can use the pass, as well as a subscription to a quarterly magazine. Buy it before 21 December to receive it before Christmas.