Whenever anyone asks advice on good accessories as a present for someone keen on digital photography, I always answer “tripod” and “extra rechargeable batteries”. The tripod helps to get clear pictures in low light, something most digital cameras are still struggle with. The rechargeable batteries, they must be Ni-MH & are really a necessity not an accessory, are needed because most digital camera are very hard on batteries.
I decided to look inside my own kit, which I tend to carry everywhere, so it should in theory be just the essentials. I have a medium sized camera bag (sturdy but not an expensive one, by the way) and a shoulder carrybag for my collapsible tripod (again not an expensive one but a good compromise between weight and sturdiness). The “clip-on” yellow & blue pouches are for glasses.
Emptying the bag was a real revelation. Do I carry around that much! Do a really need all that? Starting just left of the center, I have a nice portable battery charger that also doubles are a battery container (from Sony). I have spare memory cards, my camera uses smartmedia cards (no longer used in newer cameras). There are also, at least a couple of, soft white teri-towel cloths to keep my camera clean. Also a blower brush and lens cleaning fluid (many purists would be horrified, but I get out into the real world, where it rains, the wind blows and things can get wet, dusty and dirty) So my advice is just don’t over use the fluid on the lens, wherever possible just you’re the blower brush. Yes that’s an iPod next. I don’t use any of the iPhoto stuff, or any fancy device to transfer my photos to it as portable storage. I just like to listen to music as I walk around taking photos. The little card is a nifty reference I made myself for scaling close up photos (mainly used in photos for reports). The yellow/orange thing in the middle is an LED torch that doubles as an extra battery case. Next is my trusty card reader, which often doubles as a memory stick, since it has a USB Cable. Finally I have a couple of cables, the white one goes from the camera to USB and whilst I tend to use the card reader >(it doesn’t drain the batteries of the camera, but otherwise performs the same task). The black cable with the yellow tag (sorry it is not really visible in my photo) goes from my camera to any yellow RCA video socket on a TV or video. This cable is surprising useful to let others “preview” images. I loosely roll up the cables and put them in pouches to keep then from getting tangled. Well that’s it, all useful stuff.
Opps I forgot the camera also goes in the bag