Photo Accessories 2009; Helpful Aids To Making, Processing, And Printing Images

While we spend a good deal of time and energy in these pages reviewing cameras, there’s a good deal more to photography than light-tight boxes that capture images. Look into any photographer’s closet or kit bag and you’ll see a host of items that are sometimes essential, and sometimes impulse buys, that make photography more fun, and even expand the creative potential for any shot. That includes lighting gear and tripods, filters and heads, and even large reflective discs that unfold to provide a dazzling glow to any subject or scene. In these reports you’ll find items for the studio and for on location, for a casual stroll through the woods or a major photo excursion through city and national parks. And once you have “stuff” you need something in which to carry it, and that includes backpacks made for hiking trails and roller bags for airline travel. And of course there are also lenses, which provide numerous points of view.

The impetus for our feature stories in this issue came from the recent Photo Marketing Association (PMA) Show in Las Vegas, the biggest US photo show of the year. We assembled a team of reporters to cover what’s new in gear, and decided to concentrate on accessories that caught our eye. Admittedly, we have expanded the definition somewhat to include most everything except cameras, of which there were a few at the show and that we are now in the process of testing for future issues. But we always regret not giving these innovative products more space in the magazine, a situation we now hope to correct in this issue. In addition, we have only included those products we had not seen before, or those that have just arrived and are now available in the US, so the emphasis here is on new accessories that you will soon see at retail, or online.

We have put the manufacturer contact information online at in our Instant Links section for this issue, a tactic that not only gave us more space for these reports but that allows you to click your way right into the manufacturers’ or distributors’ homepages to obtain more detailed information about the products in this report. And while we tried to cover the beat as comprehensively as possible, there’s no way for us to have covered every new product at the show. We encourage those with products of interest to contact us to correct these unfortunate oversights.

So, we hope you enjoy this review of what’s new in photo accessories for both film and digital shooters, and we are confident that something in these reports will catch your eye. Photographers love their accessories not only because they love gadgets, but because they realize that they can add so much to their creative endeavors.