Just kidding, you don't NEED any of these things, but they are my (insta)friends' favorite random photography extras. Enjoy the list below and feel free to share this with your friends and family the next time they're looking to get you a gift besides a fake lens coffee mug (literally just got one gifted to me today). Also, because you probably got hit pretty hard with taxes and it's time to treat yourself. 


Holdfast Gear
Highly recommended by me and @imsteph.
I have the moneymakers camera straps, they are a game changer. They distribute weight way better across my shoulders, and allows me to shoot two cameras throughout the day.

Comfortable Shoes are a must!
For the ladies:
Clark Shoes - Spiced meadow and un plaza strap wedges. Recommended by @tanyavanotterloophoto because #shortgirlproblems.
ABEO - Felicity neutral boots. Recommended by @alexandriamonette
For the gentlemen:
Cole Haan Grand Series - They literally make the most comfortable dress shoes in the world. Recommended by yours truly.

Magmod Sphere
Recommended by me and @gabrielconover.
A great, easy flash diffuser that makes flash images look a lot less harsh.

A Great Camera Bag
F-stop backpack. “Absolute gem for travel photography. Allows me to pack all my photo gear and clothes for a week’s worth, while still keeping the photo gear easily accessible from the back. - @pogotography
Portage and Abonnyc - Recommended by @sarahzimmermanphoto

BOSE QC25 / QC35 Headphones
“Comfort is good, but the noise cancelling is otherworldly. For any long rides on planes, buses, cars, these are a must.” - @pogotography

Lume Cube
Recommended by @photographeramy.
You never know when you’re going to need a little light. (I wrote that slogan, they should buy it from me)

Thunderbolt external hard drive
So much faster than usb 3.0! 
Recommended by @briannabroyles.

Protein Bars for wedding days
Recommended by @ridgebenben
He prefers the Complete Cookie by Lenny & Larry’s


Photo: Laurken Kendall

Photo: Laurken Kendall

Lauren Kendall’s Contracts
Recommended by me.
These contracts cover you for weddings, photo shoots, print releases and more. If you don't have a good legally binding contract in place, pony up and get these. Because the first rule of business is "Protect Your Ass!". Also, don't miss the second shooter contract, and pre-wedding questionnaire. If you don't have those, you need them. 

Graphic: India Earl

Graphic: India Earl

India Earl - Guiding What to Wear
Recommended by me. 
Ever wonder why India's photos are so amazing? It's because her clients are all stylemasters. Nope, just kidding, but helping guide your couple in to the perfect outfit helps you not only offer a superior service, it allows your couples to feel more comfortable leading up to your shoot. I can barely dress myself let alone help my couples, so this guide was a must-have. 

Workshops - Any of them. Find the photogs you admire and go to their workshops.
@michelledudleyphotography recommended the following:
Golden Girls Workshops
(I believe by the name, I'm not invited. That's okay. I support girl bosses.) 

The Desert Shootout presented by Brianna Broyles
Tickets just went on sale but will be gone quick.

Are you kidding me?!?! This is such a good one! Remember the guy who dropped his 85mm in the ocean and our last shoot? Yeah, he didn’t have insurance. What the heck? Is that you. Get some liability, and camera gear insurance ASAP. I use Hill & Usher and love it. I live in California and I have $2M liability, $35K errors & omissions and $15K of gear for about $550 a year. Thanks for the reminder - @jarrodjphoto



Honeybook - Recommended by Me, everyone who uses it, and @The_WeddingGirl. who said the following: “saves me literally hours a week. It’s one of the best things I’ve ever used and changed my business!”.
It's an incredible tool to manage your clients, from emails to invoicing, expenses, contracts and everything in between. I love it so much that I'll gift you a free 30 minute Skype Mentor Session upon signing up if you use the link above. Why? Because Honeybook kicks me back $200 and because I love you. 

Recommended by  @Lindsaypetty.photography, & @imsteph.
In case you want an alternative to Honeybook. 

Recommended by @vlentine. 
Another option that includes photo delivery & storage. @vlentine had the following to say,  "Serious time saver with allowing me to create invoices, client forms, and galleries all in one spot. Plus the end of the year reports make revenue tracking for taxes so much easier."

Google Docs
Recommended by @alyssahollowellphotography.
For those that aren't ready to pay for a CRM. Good ol' Google Docs allows you to make spreadsheets, forms, docs and folders for free. 


Photo mechanic 
The ultimate culling machine. “It loads extremely fast, change the metadata on upload, you can cull a wedding in 1-2 hours.” - @alexandriamonette

Recommended by me.
An incredibly simple photo delivery system. I've never had a client struggle with downloading photos. For me, that's worth every penny. If you use my link above you get 250MB of extra space for free too. 

Recommended by @ryanhorban.
Offsite backup. Ryan had his iMac hard drive fail and it saved his photos. Because you can't put a price tag on saving lost photos. Actually you can, it's $50 a year.

Recommended by @ashgabes_photography.
Sync up bank accounts. Monitors all spending, creates monthly profit loss report. Send invoices to clients with no transfer fees and the money deposits to your account quickly.


Recommended by @sarahmackphoto.
Instagram planning, scheduling, and analytics.

Recommended by @BriannaBroyles.
Visually plan, schedule and manage your Instagram.  

Recommended by me.
Design perfection for Instagram



Wind Chimes (Yes, wind chimes!)
“They remind me to be in the moment and not take work too seriously because life is more than that. It also reminds me its probably nice outside so don’t be afraid to come back to the office later.” - @ryanhorban

Photo Sessions
Yes, please! @vlentine books session with photographers she admires and gets to watch her favorites work. It’s like a mentor session with keepsakes of photos of your family. - @vlentine

Standing Desk
"Because sitting is the new smoking" - @ryanhorban

Poster board
Create homemade wind effect and put your daughter to use on shoots.

What did I miss? Shoot me a DM at @tonywodarck and let me know your thoughts. This will be a growing list, so I'd love to hear your ideas. Thanks!

If you want more help on achieving specific goals for your business, check the button below about my mentor sessions or peruse the following articles. 

I'm continuing to create more free education through live interviews with other photographers on my Instagram and articles on my site. If you have requests, ideas, comments, criticism, I'd love to hear it. Follow along and DM me clicking the link below. 

Lastly, if you're looking for a couples or Orange County or destination wedding photographer, look no further.