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8 Credible & Affordable Places to Learn Photography Online

CreativeFilm & VideoSkillsTop List

Photography, like music, is a language understood anywhere in the world and is a beautiful way to express yourself without words, tell a story, or relive memories.  


Everyone should have access to a creative outlet like photography. Luckily, we live in a world where that is possible, and so much can be learned from the comfort of your own home. 


The following is a list of credible and affordable places to learn photography online. Most are full of information about general technique and application, but some are specific to photography style. Let’s check out these photography classes and see what develops.

1. Amphy Live Online Classes

Price: Varies


Amphy is a great way to learn photography online because it has live classes with instructors. You can either join a group or find a private lesson. Class lengths vary from 30 minutes to 2 hours. Some courses are free, but others cost between $8 and $50. 


It depends on what you’re looking for and your current skill level. There are lessons for absolute beginners and classes for more advanced photographers, and the variety will help you find a course that works with your schedule, budget, and skill level. 

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It’s just as important these days to be well-versed in digital editing as it is to have an eye for a shot.

2. Beginners Start Here

Price: $3-$5 per month (membership)


This course consists of 9 lessons for beginner photographers taught by professional photographer Scott Kelby. The class is much like going along to a shoot with him. 


He demonstrates which settings he’d use on the camera and gives tips on creating a better shot. It’s easygoing and informal but still informative as it isn’t specific to one camera brand.


The length of this course is 1 hour and 49 minutes. It’s broken down into short lessons that each have a description and video length, so you’ll know what to expect and if you have time to do it. You can of course watch the videos as many times as you’d like. 

3. Harvard’s Digital Photography Course

Price: free


Harvard University offers a free 12-module photography course entirely online, and it’s open to everyone, not just students. As a part of Harvard’s Open Learning Initiative, you can take this course, and many others, through the OpenCourseWare program. 


This course takes an average of 10-15 hours to complete. It’s a good choice for students with a wide range of photography experience because it covers many subjects. 


You’ll learn about the science behind photography and techniques such as lighting, exposure settings, how lenses work, and how to process photos. You also learn about photography as an art form at the same time. 

4. Nikon School Online

Price: $14.95 and up


The Nikon School Online is an excellent choice if you already have a Nikon camera, but you can still learn a lot with other brands of cameras too. 


Nikon has a variety of online courses, so photographers of any skill level can find a class to attend. Professional photographers teach the courses for a limited time, and classes are regularly rotated.


5. ILFORD Photo How-tos

Price: Free


The ILFORD Photo How-tos programs are free through the brand’s YouTube channel. They specialize in black and white and film photography while covering topics suitable for photographers of various skill levels. 


ILFORD has an official website that has a lot of helpful information. There’s a handy beginner’s guide and many specialized technical articles in the Learning Zone. 


You can also search by topic through issues of their online magazine. As vast as the subject of photography is, so are the subjects of the articles in the magazine.

6. iPhone Photography: How to Take Pro Photos on Your iPhone

Price: $15 per month (membership)


This course is excellent because it makes photography accessible to everyone. Not everyone has a camera, but almost everyone has a cellphone, and practically every cellphone has a camera. Smartphone cameras have advanced to an incredible technological level. 


Don’t worry; even though it says iPhone, the tips and techniques covered in this course can work for most smartphones. Professional photographer Dave McManus shows users how to tweak the camera settings and explains the basics of composition, light, and storytelling. 

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7. Annie Leibovitz Teaches Photography

Price: $15 per month (membership)


The Annie Leibovitz Teaches Photography course is a 15-lesson advanced course on portraiture taught by Annie Leibovitz herself through Masterclass. It’s a unique opportunity to learn from the first woman to be the chief photographer at Rolling Stone. 


The 15-lesson course consists of 13 videos totaling 3 hours and 4 minutes. She doesn’t focus on the technical side of photography in these classes. Instead, she teaches her philosophy on telling a story by using what’s there and then bringing it to life in post-production.

8. Jimmy Chin Teaches Adventure Photography

Price: $15 per month (membership)


The Jimmy Chin Teaches Adventure Photography course is also an advanced Masterclass course, but this one is a 20-lesson course on adventure photography taught by Jimmy Chin. 


Chin is an award-winning National Geographic photographer who teaches lessons on location so that you can learn the best techniques for making impactful shots. He shows how to take a picture with post-production in mind, and how to tell a story through images. 


His course consists of 18 video lessons totaling 4 hours and 10 minutes. Each lesson has a description and an individual video length, so you can go in prepared.

Bonus: Adobe Photoshop Tutorials

Price: Free


It’s just as important these days to be well-versed in digital editing as it is to have an eye for a shot. Luckily, Adobe has free Photoshop tutorials online, so you can learn or improve your editing skills. 


You can sort the tutorials by beginner or expert, and then scroll through the many lessons until you find something that piques your interest. The lesson includes a video explanation, a link to a file you can use to practice with, and a written breakdown of everything covered.

Before You Go

If you’re more interested in the creative or philosophical side of photography, you can find courses for those online as well. Photography is a fascinating art, and I highly encourage you to check out these websites and take pictures today. 

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