With so many cool photo accessories on the market, it is difficult to choose those that improve your photography without cluttering your bag. And each year many others appear and are advertised as better, smarter, and easier to use. The temptation is big. Photography has entered the era of fast consumption, and there is no way back.
Yet, you can still be a sustainable photographer and buy only products you need and use for a long time. Check out the following selection of photo accessories and see which fits your workflow and artistic style.
Extension tubes are hollow tubes with no optical elements that attach between the lens and camera. They bring the lens closer to the subject and effectively shorten the minimum focus distance of the lens. As a result, you achieve an extra magnification that adds to the one of your lenses. So, instead of buying a new lens with a higher magnification factor, you can use extension tubes with your current lens and achieve the same magnification.
The additional magnification is directly proportional to the tube’s length and inversely proportional to the lens’ focal length.
Nikon Extension Tube 8mm
Extension tubes allow you to take macro photographs without the expense of new lenses. They improve your nature and flower photography, diversify your street photography portfolio, and help you explore a wide range of compositions.
Monopods are tripods with one leg. They are cheaper, lighter, more compact, and easier to set up than tripods. In addition, monopods give you more artistic freedom. You can use them to support the camera as you would do with a tripod or hold and tilt them any way you like for more unusual camera angles.
Altura Photo 62-Inch Camera Monopod
Flash diffusers are plastic or paper boxes you put over the flash to produce a softer and more natural-looking light. They work very well for portraits because they flatter skin tones. Also, macro photographers use them because of the very short camera-subject distance used in macro photography. At the same time, using a flash diffuser reduces the risk of startling the subject.
Colored filters are used in black and white photography. They prioritize a particular color and improve the contrast of the photograph. Colored filters help you take great black and white photos directly in the camera and skip post-processing.
For example, an orange filter makes shades of yellow and orange brighter and shades of blue and green darker. They flatter the skin tones and create smooth and natural-looking portraits. If the scene has plenty of greens, go for a green filter. If it has plenty of blues, go for a blue filter.
Hoya Blue Filter
LED lights are continuous sources of light made of LEDs. They have a color temperature similar to daylight and low power consumption and improve your versatility and creativity. With LED lights you get to control the direction, intensity, and color of the light.
You can choose between hot-shoe LED panels (they mount on the camera), external LED panels, and smartphone LED lights.
Godox Smartphone Lighting R1
Having the right photo accessories may improve your photography and allow you to be more experimental and ambitious. Accessories help you adapt to any lighting condition and environment and focus on composition. Use wisely, photo accessories may reduce stress and improve your artistic skills. But first, you have to find those few ones that are really helpful and reliable.
Cover photo by Derick McKinney on Unsplash