Five Resources of Inspiration and Education in Photography & Videography for 2023
Finding inspiration for your photography or videography can sometimes feel like a daunting task, especially when the knowledge and potential resources can feel overwhelming and endless. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or just starting out, these tips and ideas will help you rejuvenate your passion, skills, and knowledge for videography and photography and take your work to the next level. From exploring the natural world to traveling to new places and experimenting with different techniques, the possibilities are endless. So with the new year starting, and the collective urge to set goals and make plans for the new year, let’s look at some resources to help improve your photo and video knowledge for the new year.
We’ve gone through and broken down these resources into two categories – free and premium.
Lensrentals & LensProToGo YouTube Channels
The first resource is our only personal pitch in this article, I promise. Did you know that we have a YouTube channel? Ran by the staff here at Lensrentals.com, our (and LensProToGo) YouTube channel gives weekly updates and tutorials on various pieces of gear and techniques used in the field. Perhaps most notably, the talking topics of these Youtube channels come directly from our own experience renting the gear. So the things most discussed are generally the gear most often rented, and most common in the field.
DPreview.com is a website that provides in-depth reviews, news, and information about digital cameras and photography equipment. The site was founded in 1998 and has become one of the most respected and trusted sources of information in the photography industry.
The website features reviews of digital cameras, lenses, and other photography equipment, as well as articles and tutorials on photography techniques, software, and accessories. It also provides a platform for users to share their own photos, ask questions and connect with other photographers, and engage in photography-related discussions in the forums.
If you come to this blog for more of our technical looks into lenses, cameras, and so on, you know the DPReview is the leading source for all that technical nerdiness. The forums are most notably filled with experts in the optics field, eager to answer any problems you may have on a technical component of photography.
DPreview also offers a variety of tools for photographers including a camera comparison tool, which allows users to compare the specifications and features of different cameras side-by-side, and a lens search tool, which helps users find the perfect lens for their camera. Additionally, the website offers sample images and videos from the cameras it reviews, giving users an idea of the image quality they can expect.
While Curiosity Stream doesn’t really offer educational platforms on photography and videography, it does offer something that can even be harder to find at times – inspiration. Focused primarily on documentaries, Curiosity Stream offers thousands of documentaries and series designed to provide education on a plethora of topics. Personally, I’ve always found the most inspiration for my photography work in worlds outside of photography directly. Songs, scenes, and travel help develop new ideas and unlock unforeseen ideas and concepts, and a great way to unlock those ideas is through documentaries. When it comes to streaming services, it’s easy to get lost in the mindless fodder being constantly fed to us, but Curiosity Stream is the only streaming service focused on educating while entertaining – it’s also one of the cheapest streaming services available.
Portrait Master Classes
Years ago, I used to teach workshops on retouching and workflow principles – but always ran into several problems. For one, when it comes to Photoshop (and video-editing for that matter), there are a number of different ways to do the same thing. So getting a group of photographers on a single workflow feels particularly impossible – especially in a single day or two of teaching. So years ago, instead of offering workshops on retouching, I just started referring people to a personal friend’s retouching class – The Retouching Series by Pratik Naik.
For those who may have heard of Pratik Naik, he’s one of the most highly skilled retouchers on the planet, and is an exceptional educator to boot. A few years ago, he teamed up with the team at Portrait Masters, and put together the absolute best retouching class on the planet, designed to help both beginners and experts in that field. At $199, I can assure you this is probably the best investment you can bring to your photography business. Portrait Masters also offers a number of additional classes (Though I have no personal experience with them).
Masterclass.com is an online education platform that offers video-based courses taught by some of the world’s most renowned experts in a variety of fields, including photography, videography, directing and more. The platform provides access to in-depth, comprehensive classes that are designed to help users learn new skills, develop their talents, and achieve their goals.
The photography section of Masterclass features classes taught by well-known photographers such as Annie Leibovitz, Tim Walker, and Jimmy Chin. These classes cover a wide range of topics, from the basics of photography and composition to more advanced techniques such as lighting, portraiture, and post-processing. Each class includes several video lessons, as well as supplementary materials such as workbooks and quizzes.
And that is what makes Masterclass so special – you’re learning from the literal best in the industry. And while you might not get the same level of education as a traditional class might offer, you get the benefit of learning from someone who actually has extensive experience in the field. Rarely do you get the opportunity to learn filmmaking from Martin Scorsese or David Lynch, and the extensive list of true professionals makes Masterclass a unique opportunity. As someone who personally bought into Masterclass a couple months ago, I have found their resources to really be one of a kind and inspirational.
And those are just a few resources to jumpstart your inspiration and business in 2023. Are there any resources you’ve felt we missed? Feel free to chime in in the comments below.
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