If you aren't sure what to get your photographer dad, we've got you covered with ideas ranging from equipment and photo storage to a formal critique or cool shades, in a price range from $25 to over...
If you have a modern digital camera or point and shoot, the most obvious
thing to do is send it back to the manufacturer. So if you have a Canon
EOS and live in the US, just send it back to Canon USA. You can usually
find repair facility addresses and phone numbers by surfing the
manufacturers' Web sites. If you live in a strange Third World country,
you can still FEDEX in a camera body with a credit card number and get
your camera fixed by the US importer.
If you have an old 35mm camera with sentimental value and are prepared
to spend $200 to make it work again, you might think that sending
it back to Nikon or Pentax or whoever would work. However, invariably
the manufacturers don't want to deal with models that are more
than 20 years old and will tell you that "parts aren't available." You
need an independent shop that is willing to cannibalize junk bodies,
machine parts from scratch, and otherwise exercise creativity. A
traditional favorite is Professional Camera Repair in New York City:
New England's only camera repair legend is Steve Grimes, 401-762-0857, www.skgrimes.com. He solves all
kinds of strange large format problems with custom machining. He also
does bread-and-butter large format shutter repairs, lens mounting, etc.