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Many individuals are thought to have contributed over the years to the development of the camera. It was French inventor Joseph Nicéphore Niépce who took the first surviving photo on a homemade camera with silver chloride coated paper, but his photo was only partially successful. Cameras were developed over the following decades with varying degrees of success, but it was ultimately Alexander Wolcott who was credited with inventing the first camera to take successful lasting photos.
Since this revolutionary moment, the way that we have communicated, documented and remembered events has shifted hugely. Although originally a luxury reserved for the elite and wealthy, cameras can now be found on the back and front of every smartphone. Rather than saving our reels of film for special occasions and family portraits, we’re taking hundreds of photos each month and sending them electronically to people across the world.
So if anyone can take a photo on their smartphone, what do we need photography lessons for?
Well… there are holiday snaps and then there are the photos that shift your perspective, that capture the concepts you can’t put into words, that drastically change the ideas of an entire country. There’s also more to cameras than that little window on the back of your phone, and those wishing to truly master the art of photography often use manual or film cameras to gain a better understanding of their art – some even developing their films themselves. It’s not over once you’ve clicked the shutter either, many professional photographers depend heavily on software such as Adobe Photoshop or Lightroom to perfect or edit their photos.
In brief, there’s a whole world more to photography than clicking that little button on the back of your smartphone!
It can be hard to grapple with the fundamentals when you first start out in photography and when you break it down to the nitty gritty it can feel pretty complicated: aperture, light meters, ISO… what does it all mean? Studying the theory with a tutor will help you to get the technical basics down and use your knowledge to improve your practical skills.
We take photos from our own perspective, but the art of photography involves understanding and adopting perspectives other than our own, both physically and psychologically. Lie on the floor, stand on a table… see the world through another lens. Through studying photography you’ll focus on considering other points of view until it comes as second nature.
Studying photography often involves studying the works of other photographers, this helps you to reflect on what works and what doesn’t so that you can develop your own style.
Computer skills are becoming increasingly vital to photography; employers expect any professional photographers to be fluent in Adobe Photoshop or Lightroom. A photography course will teach you the basics in using the software, giving you the option to specialise further in the future.
But where could photography studies take you? There are multiple branches of professional photography that open doors to a plethora of sectors:
You might even choose to study photography so that you can capture birthdays, days out, garden birds or pivotal moments so that you can look back on them later. Whatever your motivation to get behind the camera, there are multiple ways you can go about it.
Studying photography can be as simple as just buying a camera, switching it to manual mode, going out, playing with the settings and snapping away. But it’s not just taking photos that will help you to improve. Look through the photos you have taken afterwards, think about what makes your photo good and how it could be better: could you have framed it differently, got another perspective, or changed the focus a little?
Some people naturally have an eye for what makes a good photo but for most of us it helps to know some of the theory too, even if only to subvert the rules for effect! There are no shortage of directions in which to take your study, from learning about how to use aperture, ISO and shutter speed to change the look and feel of your photo, from learning the composition techniques such as the rule of thirds, symmetrical composition, diagonal lines and curves, leading lines, triangles, distortion and frame in a frame.
Key to your analysis of your own photos are the 7 basic elements of a photograph, which will always be exhibited in your photo to a certain extent. Consider how these elements are represented in your photograph to form a clear idea of how you could improve and progress in photography:
You can probably already tell that there’s a lot to learn in the discipline of photography, that’s why many budding photographers choose to learn from an expert.
A great way to meet kindred spirits whilst developing your skills is to attend a photography course or club.
If you like to learn in a group setting, weekly evening classes for photography are available in most colleges. These courses are often designed to equip you with the fundamentals and help you brush up on skills such as composition, photo editing and manipulating camera settings. These courses are often run on a termly basis with payment for the entire term taken upfront.
If you feel like you’ve got a good grip on the fundamentals but could do with support in specialist areas (e.g. film photography, wildlife photography or night photography), many colleges and organisations offer short-term (1 – 2 day) courses to help you to progress within a certain niche.
Many of us have busy lives and finding the time to attend regular photography classes (not to mention commuting to them) can easily fall to the bottom of our priorities. If you’d prefer to take a photography class from the comfort of your home and to a schedule that suits you, an online photography class might well be your best option.
There are plenty of free photography courses available online for photographers of all ability, niche and experience. The benefit of these online resources is that, unlike group sessions, they are available year-round and allow you to learn at your own pace. There is a downside though: whilst online resources are excellent for those with the discipline, motivation and confidence to learn independently, there is no tutor to help you with difficult questions or give you feedback on your work, nor are these courses tailored to your abilities or goals.
Want to learn efficiently and effectively at a time that suits you, why not develop your photography skills online with the help of a private tutor?
Studying photography in 1:1 sessions with a private tutor will help you progress as efficiently and effectively as possible.
Unlike in group sessions where areas of study are often quite general, private tutors have the luxury of tailoring your classes to your individual aspirations and move at a pace that works for you. You can also time your classes according to your schedule and meet with your tutor as often or as little as you’d like from the comfort of your own home.
Your private tutor only has one student to teach during the class – you! This means that they can focus all their attention on your progress, giving you more detailed feedback and comprehensive support so that you can progress as quickly as possible.
Where do you find one of these legendary, all-singing, all-dancing online private tutors? You can look on the internet or ask for recommendations on social media, but we reckon Superprof will yield the best results in your search.
Superprof is a platform dedicated to helping budding learners find a tutor who understands and caters to their learning needs. We have a pool of over 2,000 online photography tutors from a whole host of specialisations, all keen to share their knowledge and passion with budding photographers. The huge benefit of learning online is that you can work with these tutors no matter your location, so you can really find a tutor whose skills and experience match your learning goals!
Our tutors set their rates according to their experience levels and the level of study, so although the average beginner class costs around £14 per hour, there are prices to suit every income and aspiration. Most tutors offer a free taster lesson to let you get a feel for their methodology too.
But how do you choose between 2,000 tutors? It’s actually quite simple: start by filtering according to the level of study (beginner, intermediate, advanced, kids), choose your maximum budget, then browse through the results. Each tutor’s profile follows the same format so that they’re easy to compare, so it’s easy to compare their backgrounds, methodologies and recommendations to get a feel for their style.
Want to capture the world around you through a lens? Look through our pool of tutors and start your photography journey with Superprof today!
You can discuss directly with your tutor via email or phone. Their contact details are in the left-hand column of the lesson request page. You can then decide with your teacher on the preferred format of classes.
There are a number of possibilities:
A number of tools allow you to exchange via audio and video, as well as to share your screen or your tablet.
3218 tutors offer photography classes online
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The average price for online photography lessons is £13.
This rate will vary based on a number of different factors:
97% of tutors offer their first lesson for free.
Online classes are on average 20% less expensive than face-to-face classes.
From a sample of 359 reviews, students give an average score of 5.0 out of 5.
In the event of a problem with a class, our customer service team is available to find a quick solution (by phone or email five days a week).
(during this COVID 19 period, the Superprof customer service team remains available over an extended time period to answer all of your questions)
For each subject, you can view student reviews.
With so many of our connections being formed and maintained via online channels, online learning is becoming more and more popular with students.
It’s easy since both students and teachers have already mastered the digital tools that are used to facilitate online lessons.
It’s safe, simple and convenient. Wherever you are, you can connect with a teacher suited to your needs in just a few clicks.
3218 Photography tutors are available here to help you.