Resources I Love– Looking for inspiration? Information? Or just some tips to make your learning journey easier? In our Resources I Love series we chat to our students to get the inside information on what resources they turn to when they are studying, creating and working.
This month we chat to Laura, Open Colleges’ Certificate IV in Design student and photographer, to find out what resources she is using to inspire, inform and assist her photography.
When I was young, National Geographic magazine was my window into the incredible world beyond my tiny rural town. Every month, I looked forward to the latest issue arriving in our mailbox. I still enjoy reading National Geographic, and their magazines, website and books are excellent sources of inspiration for photographers of all levels.
My father is a talented photographer, so my first introduction to actual photography came through him. He has been a strong inspiration in my photographic journey and challenges me to learn, grow and improve. Learning is a great way to stay interested and inspired – that’s why I decided to enroll with Open Colleges.
I have been a satisfied Canon girl since the days of film (thanks Dad!), and am admittedly biased in the equipment department. However, there are other excellent brands as well. Compatibility (lenses, flashes, accessories) makes switching brands an expensive move, so bear this in mind if you are in the market for your first serious camera body. I also recommend investing in quality lenses as you grow your collection – they will serve you well, even if you upgrade bodies.
For editing and design work, I use software through Adobe’s Creative Cloud.
To establish a solid foundation for your photography, get to know your equipment intimately. If you can’t handle working through the user’s manual, consider investing in a training DVD for your major equipment. I used this method (Blue Crane), and while it’s still kind of painful, it’s a good alternative. There are also some great (free!) online tutorials available.
If you want to explore photography but can’t afford fancy equipment, that’s perfectly okay! Nice tools help, but ultimately, they are just tools. It’s your vision and skill as the photographer that matter in making a great photo, whether it’s on a camera phone or DSLR. You can upgrade tools later, if you decide that you want to take things further.
I have read many photography books and magazines over the years. Two old favourites in my collection are National Geographic’s The Ultimate Field Guide to Photography and Tom Ang’s Digital Photography Masterclass – both are accessible, even if you’re a novice and have been loaned to many friends with great feedback.
Go for it!
If you are interested in photography, go for it! Grow your knowledge, experiment a little, and decide where you might like to go from there. If you are already a keen photographer and interested in taking your skills further (whether for personal interest like me, or as a career like many of my course mates), explore what Open Colleges has on offer – I am really enjoying my course thus far and learning lots along the way. Whatever you do, have fun!