When you’ve just bought your first DSLR, the wealth of accessories can be downright confusing. A rule of thumb is to invest only in those that serve your purpose and desired photography style. To make this selection easier for you, here is a basic guide to the main components you should consider:
1. Backup batteries
You may not have expected it, but backup batteries are a must-have; here is why: you’ll be surprised how quickly you can go through one charge when you’re grasping the basics of photographing with your new camera. You’ll take long to learn how it works and calibrate it for each photo, with the battery on for all this time. If you’re out and about, you will be reaching for that spare set of batteries.
2. An off-camera flash
The built-in flash does more harm than good to your photos. Better picture quality is achieved through an external, better performing flash. Note that this will require even more battery power, so be prepared.
3. Shutter release
Be it wired or wireless, a shutter release is what helps you take a photo when you can’t actually touch the camera – e.g. when you are in the picture too, but also when you’re shooting macros (close-ups) or long exposure scenes. By releasing the shutter remotely you avoid vibrations or moves that would ruin the result.
4. Lens pen
It’s hard to avoid getting dust, water etc. on the lens, which is why you need something reliable to clean it. A blower is a good specialty tool, but may be a strange thing for a novice user. A lens pen is a much more intuitive tool, with two handy ends – one for brushing and the other for effective cleaning.
5. Neck strap
Photography doesn’t have to be an ordeal. Avoid neck pain from carrying your camera or other troubled by purchasing a suitable, protective neck strap that you can adjust.
6. Polarizer filter
The name may be confusing, but its job is very simple. This lens accessory helps decrease reflections (such as from glass or various shiny surfaces), at the same time making colors look brighter through saturation increase.
7. A very stable tripod
Tripods can be extremely useful to beginners too, if they’re learning long exposure or night photography. Make sure you select a sturdy and very stable one, so that there is no movement while the camera is shooting. The photo sharpness will be radically improved.
8. White balance cap for lens
This lens cap is a better replacement for the gray card, which helps you set the correct white balance for every photograph. This will make every picture look the ay you want it to.