10 things I'd like you to have...

And by 'you' I mean me... 

That time of year when every man and his dog are making lists, checking them twice (for affiliate codes) and slapping them up on the internet for all of those clickings! 

Here's my list and the reasons that I'm including the things I choose. Hope that a. you click them, buy them and I get $1.45 and b. that if you need help choosing photo gear for family or friends, that this list helps. 

1. Sony a6000 

Why? A great step from a compact camera / point and shoot. You can use this in auto mode for stunning photos (matched with a good eye, you'll do even better!) and when you're feeling more confident, you can start working through the modes to 'M' for 'Much better' (or manual... right?) and really sharpen your skill set.

2. Fujifilm X-T1 

The Fuji X-T1 is a great camera, but to me, its in a different place to the Sony... The X-T1, also features wifi options for control and transfer to your phone / tablet, etc, but there's something different about the X-T1 that just makes it a bit... cool? Does that even matter? I don't know, only you can answer that. The Fuji X-T1 with the 56mm f/1.2 lens is a stunning combo for anyone that wants to do away with all the mess and fuss of choosing and just have a powerful, relatively compact camera to take everywhere. 

3. WD My Passport Wireless

If you're going to buy one of the above cameras, you're going to need to put the images somewhere! Recently I've been using the WD MyPassport Wireless when I'm on the go... The ability to put my SD card in the actual drive and see it transfer off onto my drive without me having to do anything - so good! Then I can connect to my drive from my phone / tablet via its wifi network, copy the contents, edit them on my phone and upload to wherever! Great for me as a social media professional. Great for you as a photographer (aka mum or dad with a camera) that wants to have a good bit of storage handy!

4. Big Turtle Shell

A departure, but not, from photography! If you're on a shoot or just out and about taking photos in some cool place... You and your friends, Urbexing it up, maybe shooting a model (your semi-cute, but willing guy friend) in an old house somewhere... Take music! Add atmosphere to your environment and don't be fussed if it rains - just dance! Big Turtle Shell is an epic inclusion for anyone... Yes, you can charge it and take it to the beach / a picnic / farm OR just to do the dishes... 

5. Retrospective 7

You have this cool stuff, but you need to cart it around - there's only one bag brand that you need... (well, there are two, but you know.. for now, lets go with one!) The thinkTank Photo Retrospective 7 is my goto walk around camera bag - I stick my mirrorless camera, extra lens (typically a wide and a good portrait length) as well as my Turtle shell. All of my Retrospective camera bags are Pinestone - they remind me of my dad's old fishing bag. Much love. 

Well, we're half way through this list... What are you even doing for Christmas? Do you like lists like this? Are we all born to windowshop? One thing I do know is we should have a coffee before we move on to number 6... 


6. Rancilio Silvia espresso machine

By now you may have gathered that I enjoy a good coffee? I'm using a Silvia V3. Incidentally, Silvia is named after Silvia Rancilio, the sister of once Rancilio SPA owner, Luca Rancilio... Enough with the random info - The Silvia is a great espresso machine (none of that pod nonsense) for your home. 

7. Anker Astro portable power

If you're going to cart all this stuff that needs powering, and you're off somewhere for more than a few hours with heavy phone or tablet use in mind, maybe on a shoot, maybe off to the woods to see if you can find a teddybear's picnic - who knows - anyways, I've been using the Anker power for a year or so and LOVE it... Well worth the cash, great form factor, more powerful than a speeding bullet... (This one will charge your iPhone from flat to full about 6 times'ish) 

8. Wish you were here

I don't actually, but you should listen to this record - its brilliant, timeless and real. Pink Floyd's Wish You Were Here on vinyl, even suitable for hipsters - vinyl's cool don't you know. 

Wish You Were Here
By Pink Floyd

9. Cath Kidston mug

Yep, lately this guy has been making an appearance on my desk, often. After 5pm Silvia sleeps for the night and my tea drinking skills come to the fore. A big mug of tea is a comforting thing. 

10. Turn off your computer and go outside for five minutes... 

Just go somewhere quiet with your mug of tea, think about your year. Has it been bag, good, otherwise? Did what you think would happen, happen? Where do you want to be this time next year? Tuesday December 16th 2015... 365 days of uncertainty / positive direction? 

I'll be a year closer to starting my renovation mayhem, I hope to be sitting at a new desk in a new chair, I may have moved completely across to a mirrorless system OR Canon will have released the 5DMK4 and I'll have sold everything and simplified to a Mk4 and a new set of primes. Who knows. 

Remember when you were young, you shone like the sun. Shine on you crazy diamond.

Happy Christmas.