It’s easy to get stuck in a rut as a photographer, especially once you start to gain traction turning around projects for clients. You might find yourself establishing a go-to process for your photo project workflows and then feeling uninspired once it becomes your default.
You might be improving all the time, but the changes can feel so minor that you don’t get the same sense of adventure that you felt as a beginner. You need something to shake everything up.
Looking for inspiration, there are virtually countless resources available online, but many are low quality, and it can feel like a waste of time to browse them without any guidance. The number of options is simply overwhelming. All is not lost, though, and there are people, tools, and learning opportunities online that can revitalize you.
Here are five great resources that can consistently help you to keep your photos feeling fresh.
1. Scott Kelby
Scott Kelby is a legend within photography circles, and you might recognize him because he’s been the #1 top-selling author of photography books for six years in a row. He offers many premium courses that can really elevate your skills but there’s also so much available for free through his website.
The site features regularly updated content, including blog posts, podcasts, and videos. He dives deep into life as a photographer but it’s his detailed, actionable tips that can really make a difference.
On one episode of his podcast, he invited audience members to send in their own photographs, and he taught them how to edit these images live for the greatest effect. His page is littered with innovative tutorials like this that are sure to teach you something new to apply in your own work.
Browse the past episodes and see which ones catch your attention and then potentially join the hundreds of other loyal photographers who tune in every week.
There’s been a wave of amateur photographers using unrealistic edits on photos as they play with new tools such as AR and swapping backgrounds. Filtertune is one of the best apps focusing mainly on realistic photo editing.
It comes from Lightricks, who have created a whole host of apps for visual content creators – you might already be familiar with Motionleap, Videoleap, or Facetune in particular. Filtertune allows you to edit your visuals as you like and then save these edits as your own filters to apply to your photos and videos. You can even auto-apply filters to only specific parts of an image (like people or the sky, for example) if you prefer.
What makes this app truly stand out amongst similar products, though, is the community aspect. You can share your custom filters with the community and browse filters created by other users too.
This means you’ve got an almost endless supply of innovative filters all available in one app. It also gives you a chance to find photographers with a style you resonate with for potential collaborations in the future.
3. MoMa’s Online Courses
One of the great things about photography is there’s always more to learn. The tough part is finding the right course, though, especially if you’re not able to attend a prestigious school in person. If you have a limited budget, this too can restrict your options – but it doesn’t need to stop you.
Of all the free courses available, this “specialization” series by the Museum of Modern Art is amongst the very best. It has four separate courses that have been combined to form one specialization on the Coursera platform, and it boasts a 4.8-star rating with more than 1000 reviews. Each of the individual courses has also received exceptional feedback.
The four sub-courses are Modern Art and Ideas, Seeing Through Photographs, What Is Contemporary Art, and Fashion as Design. The first three have strong relevance to your photo journey, and the last course can definitely help cultivate some out-of-the-box thinking.
It’s on-demand and self-paced, too, so you can dip in and out as you need whenever you’re seeking new ideas or have time between projects.
This site itself maintains a rigorously high standard of products and articles aimed at both professionals and amateurs. Where it stands out, in particular, is the Photoshop actions and Lightroom presets.
These can instantly transform the composition of your photo and give it that professional edge it may have been lacking. We also have a huge range of templates to spare you some of the repetitive work so you can focus on the parts you love.
For a serious photographer, it is somewhat of a no-brainer to opt for the Ultimate Photography Bundle, with $5000 worth of products for just $79. It saves you time in not needing to search other sites but gives you the diversity of options you need to express your creativity to the fullest.
What photographer doesn’t like a challenge? If you feel like your love for photography is waning, try out Gurushots. You start off as a Newbie and undertake a series of challenges to work yourself up to Guru status while increasing your skills along the way.
You can get instant feedback on your work as the community votes over 6 billion times per month. All you need to do is submit your photo to the daily challenge and receive feedback from your peers. Like Filtertune, it really helps build a sense of community in the photography world.
Winning photos can win prizes, but they also have the chance to be printed and exhibited in real-life galleries all over the world. Take a flick through their site, and you’re sure to find inspiration to have you itching to grab your camera.
We know every photographer goes through a phase where they feel their inspiration is missing. But don’t get disheartened – it’s likely to just be a temporary phase. The resources shared here can help get you out of your comfort zone and help you to rediscover the joy of photography.
This passion will shine through your photos and lead to a greater variance in your work to keep both yourself and your clients wanting more and more.