Best Cameras and Gifts for Valentine's Day

Any opportunity you get to spoil your sweetheart is a good one. For that matter, spoiling yourself can be just as rewarding. Valentine's Day is no exception. Instead of opting for the traditional dinner on the town with a predictable jewelry box or new tie presented with dessert, treat them to a romantic sightseeing tour with a brand new camera and some sweet new photography-inspired gifts to go along with it. Any of the gifts, bundles and cameras below will be sure to make anyone fall in love all over again.

Diana F + Mr. Pink Deluxe Kit


What a marvelous way to say "I love you" by spoiling her rotten with a fancy new Diana F camera complete with a huge line up a lenses, flashes, cables and a splitzer. The Diana F is a great go-to camera for light, fun, casual photography. Easily adaptable and portable, the Diana F keeps it creative no matter where you go. The kit comes complete with five lenses: 35mm with 4 masks, 20mm Fisheye, 38mm Super-Wide, 55mm Wide-Angle with Close Up lens and a 110mm Telephoto lens. With so many options, you'll be reminded of your bachelor days. Right now if you purchase the Kit from Lomography at the price of $254, you are getting a savings of $115 plus an additional 20% of the Lomography leather camera strap (should you choose to buy it). The site also provides some samples of images taken with the various lenses the Kit has to offer to give you an idea of what to expect before you develop the film. Now for the Valentine's Day kicker: the Diana F + Mr. Pink camera comes in a blazing hot pink color perfect for the occasion.

Sony α NEX-3 with 18-55mm Lens



Rivaling DSLR cameras three times its size, the comparatively mini but mighty Sony NEX-3 is the next step in digital photography technology. Its small size opens up a number of doors bulky DSLR cameras held closed. Not to mention, it is a sexy shade of red! The NEX-3 has a laundry list of specifications ranging from an enviable megapixel count to a myriad of scene modes: 14.2 megapixel resolution, Sony's new E-Mount lens system, Sweep Panorama capabilities, 720HD MPEG-4 video recording with stereo sound, 25-point AF system, 49 segment metering system, clip-on external flash and a number of priority shooting modes. The sleekest part of this whole kit-in-a-kaboodle is the 3.0 inch tilting LCD screen with 921k dots and Sony's prized TruBlack technology. TruBlack Technology is Sony's way of making sure the photos you take look as close to real life as technologically possible once they are displayed in digital formats whether it be on camera, in digital photo frames or on Sony television sets.

Fujifilm Instax Mini 7 Instant Camera


Throw back to the start of your relationship when instant cameras were all the rage with this adorably petite Fujifilm Instax Mini 7 instant camera. The magic of instant film never fades and it is especially convenient for those private moments Valentine's Day sometime leads up to. Not only does it maintain the instant film development these cameras are known for, the Instax Mini 7 also has a Smart Flash that fills the frame evenly. Plus, it has four settings to choose from: Indoor/Dark, Cloudy/Shady, Fine and Clear. The icing on the cake is what makes this camera a true gem: this camera uses both Fujifilm cartridges and the same film used in Polaroid MIO and 300 instant cameras. So all that Polaroid film you've been hoarding since the news broke that they would no longer be manufacturing Polaroid instant cameras can finally come out of hiding. Photojojo is currently running a bundle package on this camera (shown in white). For only $99, you get the camera and 20 exposures. They offer free shipping over $50 and promise to get it out of the shop in 24 hours. If you are a stickler for color, Amazon is offering it in pink along with 2 cartridges of instant film for $139.99.

Flip Video MinoHD


Lesruba Designs has gone ahead and done the hard work for you this Valentine's Day by customizing the Flip Video MinoHD, adorned with flourishing hearts, cupids, kisses and candy hearts galore. Less cumbersome and easier to handle than your average camcorder, the MinoHD fits into your pocket and comes with its own built-in USB stick. With a 2x digital zoom, it films at 30 frames per second in 720p HD quality. Just like your honey, this camera is the complete package; in the box you get a TV connection cable, wrist strap, user guide and a soft case and within the camera you get a built-in microphone, speaker and FlipShare Program software allowing you to upload, share and edit all from within the camera. With 2 hours of recording capability on a full charge, you can capture the entire evening romantic moment by romantic moment.

Nikon Coolpix S5100 Digital Camera Bundle


If you are digging yourself out of the proverbial dog house this Valentine's Day, a surefire way to ensure escape is with a Nikon Coolpix S5100 bundle from Cameta Camera. Cameta is a massively successful New York based free-standing camera shop that has a huge online presence on both Amazon and eBay along with their website making them a legitimate but influential small business online. As an authorized dealer of all major camera manufacturers in the USA, they can offer amazing deals like the ones being offered this Valentine's Day. The precious pink Coolpix S5100 is just the starting off point (read the review from Steve's here) with 5x digital zoom, 12.2 mega-pixel resolution, HD video recording capabilities and 18 scene modes. The 2 to 10 second self-timer allows you to get up close and cuddly with your honey without the help of a third party. Along with the S5100, you also get a Transcend 8GB SD card, spare battery, black leather case with pink trim (coordination points!), Zeikos USB 2.0 SecureDigital High Speed card reader, Precision Design Flexible mini tripod and a microfiber cleaning cloth. That is quite the load and for only $149! That is the deal of the holiday. The camera alone runs for $144. If you were to buy everything separately, you would end up spending close to $230. That is a savings of 40%. Take that extra money and spend it on an adorable some super cute handmade photography inspired jeweley.

Bokeh Masters Kit

Accent your Valentine's Day photographs with some Bokeh action. Bokeh is Japanese for blur. Essentially, Bokeh filters transform shapeless focused lights into images. The Bokeh Masters Kit offers 21 precut disks to alter your photographs. Great for playing around in your personal time, the Bokeh Kit can also diversify your professional portfolio appealing to a new range of clients from veterinarians (dog paw) to Green enterprises (recycling symbol). The opportunities are just as endless as your imagination. The Masters kit comes with all the filters shown above plus an additional 8 uncut customizable disks. There is also a custom designed Laser-cut disk holder that allows you to place the disk onto your lens without ever touching your lens. All the disks fit into the wallet that comes with the kit. For only $25, this can be a sweet little gift you give yourself this Valentine's season. Who knows, maybe on your adventures out at night to photograph the city with your new filters you will stumble upon an eligible, single photographer looking for just the same thing.

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Maggie OBriant
Maggie O'Briant Personal Blog | Flickr

Maggie O'Briant recently graduated from Florida State University with an English Literature degree. She is currently a freelance writer and photographer. She currently lives in Hawaii with her husband and giant baby.