My favorite online food photography classes
I have been taking pictures for most of my adult life. But honestly, for the longest time I was just taking average (even bad) pictures, using the auto mode because I was too scared to get started, or because all the vocabulary and technical aspects were just too overwhelming. If you are reading this, you know what I am talking about. This was a while ago, and I had since learned a lot about photography in general, and food photography in particular. And there has never been a time where the resources have been so readily available and abundant. And yes, it might just be the problem: the food photography classes are too abundant and you just don’t know where to start. So I thought I would share with you my favorite resources, from the basic photography classes to the professional level food photography and business of photography classes.
Get off the manual mode
Before you dig into the fascinating (and mouth watering) world of food photography, you need to get the basics straight. A great place to find classes to make sense of your camera settings and finally uncover all the amazing possibilities of shooting in manual mode, is Lynda.com. This is where I started learning my photography skills. They have an amazing number of great videos, on topics ranging from photography to design, business, CAD, marketing, and more. Besides the fact that they have classes on just about anything you want to learn, they also have an app where you can download your classes and watch them offline. They are subscription based ($20 to $30 per month), but a lot of organizations like your local library offer it as a part of their membership, and otherwise you can get a free month trial, so check it out.
They were also recently bought by Linkedin, so when you complete a course, you can add the “certificate” to your LinkedIn profile, which is pretty cool.
Learn about specific photography or business related topics
Before I started my photography business a few years ago, I was working 3 days a week as a e-commerce specialist and social media manager for a small startup. The other 2 days of the week (and most of my weekends and evenings), I spent my time watching live classes from CreativeLive. Every day of the week, CreativeLive records classes in their Seattle studio and broadcasts the live classes while they do so. They have a variety of topics about photography, video, marketing, business, art & design and music. Their classes are a little more specific and the very cool thing about them is that you can ask questions directly through the live chat since they are broadcasted live. Once the broadcast is over and recorded, you can purchase the class, and watch it at your own pace. Most of what I know about product photography and artificial lighting I learned on CreativeLive. I cannot recommend enough Don Gianatti’s class on product photography and all of Mark Wallace materials. Whether you want to become a landscape, fine art, wedding, portrait or commercial photographer, there is a class for you.
The ultimate food photography and editing classes
Rachel, from TwoLovesStudio, is one of my favorite photographer and the author of (in my opinion) the best food photography classes. I have watched a lot of classes on food photography, but I find that a lot of them are too basic and often geared towards food bloggers rather than food photographers. Rachel published one e-book, the Art of Light (do yourself a favor a get a copy right now, this is the most inspiring book I have ever read about “seeing the light” in photography), and 2 online classes: Composition Essentials and Lightroom Masterclass. They are both the most complete and in depth classes in their respective fields. Each of them comes with very detailed cheat sheets and some homework to keep you engaged and practicing. She is also constantly adding new materials and sharing live sessions in the private facebook groups reserved to her students where she reviews students work and answers questions. She even reviews some of the homework assigned in the classes and gives individual feedback.
Full disclosure, Rachel announced a couple of months ago that she was offering a free 6 months mentorship and I was selected alongside my co-mentee Martin Willmann. I get regular calls and emails with her and we work on topics such as finding your style, creating an engaging and cohesive portfolio, finding and approaching clients, etc. She is an amazing mentor and I am unbelievably grateful to be able to learn directly from her.
The best resources on the business of food blogging
Dani Meyer from The Adventure Bite, is putting together an amazing amount of content on the business of food photography and food blogging. It is the only class like this out there. Besides her introduction to DSLR camera, Lightroom Basics and Photoshop Basics, she has classes on mastering the Sales process, the Food Blogger Funnel, and her amazing Food Blogger Academy, which will teach you everything you need to know from how to dial in your mindset, to branding and systems & workflows. All her classes come with access to her Facebook group Food Blogger Entrepreneurs Academy, where she personally answers questions and gives feedback. It also includes a weekly Q & A session. If you want the top of the top, you can sign up for Food Blogger Insiders, her coaching program, where you have direct access to her through Voxer and as well as a weekly coaching session. This program is still in beta phase right now and will be launched in the next few months. As a beta tester, I can tell you that this is worth every penny and the wealth of knowledge that Dani shares and the accountability she holds me to has done wonders to get my business to the next level.
Bea Lubas – One of my absolute favorite food photographer. She shares her beautiful work on Instagram and on her website, amongst some recipes and tutorials. She also shares some great behind the scenes and very often shares her creative process and how she “builds” (literally) her photos on IG Stories. It is fascinating and I always learn something new. She regularly hosts great challenges, like the #belightinspired challenge going on right now until the end of August. She also gives some in person workshops, which are very often sold out. One day, I will make it to one of them 🙂
The Bite Shot – Joannie Simon is food photographer and on her YouTube channel she shares great videos about Lighting, Gear, Food Styling, etc. I always learn new things and her personality is awesome and very fun. You can also follow her on Instagram, her stories and IGTV are great resources.
There is of course a lot of other resources out there, but there is also a limited (very limited) number of hours in a day, so I try to stick to those resources, which have have enough content to keep me busy for the next 10 years… What are your favorite classes and go-to online resources?
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