A Mac is the ultimate tool for creatives — you’ll find Apple computers littered throughout graphic design houses, music and video studios, marketing agencies and newsrooms.
Chances are, if you know a creative, you know a Mac user.
So, what are you going to buy them for Christmas? If you’re stuck for ideas, let us help.
Our gift guide for creatives will help you pick the perfect present.
Whether you’re looking for an affordable stocking stuffer or a budget-breaking gesture they’ll never forget, we’ve got you covered.
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Wacom Intuos Pen and Tablet
There are a ton of uses for tablets in the creative industry (and I don’t mean iPads). Wacom is one of the biggest names in tablets and the Intuos Pen and and Tablet set is a great midlevel offering. Whether it’s for a graphic designer, a web developer or even a video editor, the Intuos — with its Mac-like, black-and-aluminum styling — is a great product for their work, and comes in several sizes.
The intuitive stylus makes editing photos and videos a breeze. It has more than 1,000 levels of pressure to make it feel as natural as possible, plus four customizable ExpressKeys that make things more convenient. The keys are application-specific, so you can turn them into shortcuts for all sorts of apps. You can also use the tablet as a giant touchpad, since it doesn’t need the pen to interact with your movements.
Wacom Intuos Pen and Tablet (CTL-480) — starting at $59.89
Creative studios can be messy — and little things like iPhones can get lost among all the clutter while they charge. So why not treat your creative to one of the coolest, most recognizable charging cables money can buy?
The Bobine from Fuse Chicken is a flexible and eclectic cable for your iPhone or iPod that lets your device sync and charge. The cable can stand up by itself so it’s always in view, which is handy if you’re constantly looking up at a screen. It doubles as a stand and dock for your device, and can even be wrapped around different objects, like the legs on your desk or the base of your iMac.
Bobine — $35
The Libratone Loop is the ideal office speaker — perfect for blasting out tunes that inspire creative design. Its circular design makes it a nice fit for even the untidiest of desks, but there’s also an option to hang it on a wall. Interchangeable covers mean even the fussiest designers can customize the speaker’s look to suit them.
The sound quality is great. Words don’t really do it justice, but the Loop is one of the richest, most real-sounding speakers I’ve ever heard — especially in its price range. It also has AirPlay, Bluetooth 4.0 and DNLA, so you get CD-quality streaming.
Libratone Loop — $350
Adobe icon pillows
The random letters you see carefully stitched into the brightly covered pillows above will be instantly recognizable to anyone who has ever opened any Adobe app. Coming in many variations, these pillows suit any creative profession – Premiere for the filmmaker, Photoshop for the graphic designer, and Dreamweaver for the web-heads in your life. If the person on your list is an all-rounder, you can mix and match to brighten up their office.
Adobe icon pillows — $20
The Quick Brown Fox Jumps Over The Lazy Dog: Typeface Memory Game
Graphic designers love fonts. I mean l-o-v-e them. I’ve spent many hours scrolling through various websites looking for the ideal typeface for a certain project, which means I can recognize a lot of them. Most designers can — so this memory card game is ideal to show off their font-identifying skills. There are 25 pairs of cards, each with a different type family, and a glossary of typographic terms. There’s plenty of history about the evolution of each typeface’s design.
This is a bit of a niche present, but I’m definitely geeking out about it, and I’m sure the graphic designer in your life will too.
Dodge & Burn T-Shirt
I love to show the world what I do and what I love. Wearing clothing that boldly states my profession is one way to go about it. There are tons of great designs out there for whatever the profession (such as “Shoot, Edit, Repeat” for filmmakers) but my personal favorite is the Dodge & Burn T-shirt for photographers and Photoshop users. Dodge & Burn, which is also the name of the company that produces these shirts, is based in New York City and develops designs based on historic cameras.
These are great for all photographers but my favorite has got to be the simple and subtle Dodge & Burn logo. Check out the full post for links to all of their T-shirts.
Dodge & Burn T-Shirts — $29
iMac with Retina 5k Display
I mentioned at the beginning of this post that the Mac is the perfect tool, so this is likely to be a personal present — a gift for yourself, from yourself, due to its heavy price tag. But that big and beautiful 5K display could not be left off my list. Its super-crisp, 5,120 by 2,880 resolution — or 14.7 million pixels — looks amazing to anyone’s eyes, but for creatives working with high-quality images and super-sharp video, it’s an absolute must.
Plus, you get the power and performance of one of the most popular computers in the creative and media industries – the iMac. A 4K 27-inch display all by itself will set you back $400 to $800, so the additional cost for the latest iMac really isn’t that big of a deal when you take into consideration the higher resolution, plus the fact you also get a Core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM and Apple’s latest GPU.
Apple iMac with Retina 5k Display — starting at $2,499