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If photography is something that you wish to follow as a career, a passionate hobby, or you simply want to learn photography to capture the best images possible, then the good news is that are literally thousands of resources at your disposal.
What might not be so simple, is sorting out which is the most effective learning tool for you, given that each of us likes to learn in different ways.
Nevertheless, if you read on, we’ll highlight some of the most common ways which you learn photography.
One thing that the internet has given to the world, more than just about anything else, is the ability for individuals to learn from the comfort of their own home and in many cases, this can be done for free, or for a very small fee.
There are numerous sources online where you can learn photography, with some being free and very basic, and others being more comprehensive and thus charging a fee.
The topics taught will cover the whole gambit of photography subjects, and therefore many may be too advanced if you are just starting out. However, there are also many courses teaching photography for beginners.
One of the most popular platforms is Udemy.com which has tens of thousands of courses on almost every subject imaginable.
A quick search for ‘photography’ shows that there are over 1,800 courses in their catalog and photography for beginners will undoubtedly be a large proportion of those.
Although offline courses may be less common these days due to the expansion of the internet, it is still possible to find local classes being held in colleges, community centers, and local schools.
Generally, these will be conducted by a professional photographer or someone with expertise on the subject, and there will more than likely be a course fee to be paid. Look in your local newspaper or community notices for details of any course which may be available in your area.
Find a Mentor
One of the best ways to learn any subject is to have one-on-one tuition from an expert. Some research in your local area should flag up professional photographers, and photography teachers, who take on individual students.
The fees charged may be somewhat higher than you might pay for a book or course, however, being able to have your very own teacher has many advantages.
The most obvious is that you can ask them a multitude of questions and receive an answer almost immediately.
The second is there will be more opportunities for your photographic images to be assessed and critiqued by your mentor, who can then show you or teach you how to improve them.
It is fair to say that there have been as many books published on photography as there are possible scenes which you could capture.
This is a nice problem in the sense that you will not lack reading material from which to learn photography. The specific book you use should be based on where you are on your learning curve.
If you are brand new, then a general photography book, which starts teaching the basics and then proceeds to more advanced subjects will be most suitable, rather than one which focuses (no pun intended) on a specific subject.
The other aspect of a book is that you can work at your own pace rather than that dictated to you by a course or a mentor. This might suit those whose time for photography is limited by other commitments such as studies or work.
Local Photography Group
Joining a local photography group is a great way to learn more about photography.
Undoubtedly there will be some very experienced and knowledgeable members of the club, who will happily pass on their advice to other members.
The other aspect of being part of a club is that there is more of a community aspect, therefore, everyone is bound to share any tips they have picked up.
This pooling of knowledge and experience is not something you are likely to get reading a book or following an online course while sitting alone at your computer desk.
Practice, Practice Practice
Whichever method you use to learn photography, there is a common aspect to all of them that you must follow in order to improve, and that is practice.
As with anything that requires both knowledge and skill, it is the practicing of them that will turn what you learn into results.
Taking every opportunity you can to use your camera will be one of the most effective ways to become a better and more accomplished photographer.