I have found the following links to be very useful in furthering my education in the art of photography. These are sites I tend to roll through on nearly a daily basis and you’ll find all manner of contrary views among them.
In no particular order:
Best Buy’s Lens Guide: This link was suggested by Mrs. Krueger’s Girl Scout troop as an additional online resource for my website. Best Buy has put together an excellent basic overview of lenses, the different types, how they work, how to choose, lens accessories, and so on. Not a bad place to go if you are relatively new to photography and are wondering what kinds of lenses you should have in your DSLR kit. Thanks for the suggestion, Scouts! (Additionally, Best Buy also has a very good DSLR Camera Buying Guide that can help you make your decisions. Neither of these two sites tell you to buy from Best Buy–it is just some good basic info for you.)
Kirk Tuck: In his Visual Science Lab he covers everything from philosophy, video, portraits, working commercially, future trends, and off topic whatevers. His is an interesting alternative perspective on all things related to photography. http://visualsciencelab.blogspot.com/
Guy Tal: His blog is an exercise in sensitivity, introspection, reflection, and the philosophy of the art of photography. Try it for something a bit deeper than the latest equipment review. http://guytal.com/wordpress/
Missy Mwac: She is humorous and bitingly satirical in her observations of current trends, fads, and business in the field of photography. An entertaining writer, go here for a little relief from the drier topics you have been perusing. She also has an array of comical YouTube videos online–just search for Missy Mwac. http://missymwac.tumblr.com/
Trey Ratcliff: His “Stuck in Customs” site has become probably the most popular travel photography blog on the net–not bad for a photographer with only one good eye. He touches on a range of topics from the technical to tutorials to the more philosophical. http://www.stuckincustoms.com/
Scott Kelby: The Photoshop guru and expert in many facets of photography. Some things on his site you need a subscription to see, but there is still a lot of free info. http://scottkelby.com/
Eric Kim: If street photography is your thing, you have probably already heard of him. His blog is a giant fount of information and inspiration–not only for the budding street photog, but for any other photographic artist as the concepts he brings up are often universal. http://erickimphotography.com/blog/start-here/
The Strobist: The go-to site for anything to do with flash and lighting. Great tutorials. http://strobist.blogspot.com/
Photo.net: I am usually on this site daily and am a subscriber. Good forums for asking questions, lots of experienced photographers and nice portfolios to view and learn from, if a bit on the side of mainstream photography styles. http://photo.net/
Nikonians: I shoot Nikon and this is a great place to find info about any aspect of Nikon equipment. http://www.nikonians.org/
The Luminous Landscape: Great forums, great essays on all aspects of photography. I especially like Alain Briot’s essays on style, seeing and the creative process. Note that you must now subscribe to get the content of this website–but, it is currently a mere $1 a month, so well worth it. http://www.luminous-landscape.com/index.shtml
Ken Rockwell: Many apparently hate this guy for his sometimes contrarian views. I hate no one and go to his site often to see what his opinion might be about new lenses, cameras and camera settings. Sometimes I agree and sometimes I don’t, but I always learn something. I do appreciate his views on keeping things simple. http://www.kenrockwell.com/
Digital Photography Review: The go-to site for complete reviews on all brands of photographic equipment, especially cameras and lenses. http://www.dpreview.com/
Thom Hogan: A top Nikon expert and fount of technical knowledge. He has great reviews of most all the Nikon cameras and lenses as well as custom guides to the Nikon cameras. I bought his guides for the D90 and the D800 when I purchased those cameras and found them very useful. The standard camera manual tells you what the buttons do but Thom will tell you why you might want to set them up in a particular way. Thom also regularly analyzes general trends in the camera industry as a whole (with great insight) and, even though he shoots with Nikon products, he holds back nothing in his critical writings about Nikon and everyone else. http://www.bythom.com/
The Photographer’s Ephemeris: The go-to site for an app which will tell you where the Moon and Sun will be at any given location on Earth. Very useful for planning your landscape photography expedition. http://photoephemeris.com/
The Mindful Eye: Craig Tanner’s website is no longer active, but it is still very much worth a visit to his Daily Critique videos which can also still be found on YouTube. I especially like his very supportive teaching style on these videos as he analyzes images submitted by viewers. From these critiques, I have learned a tremendous amount about color, composition, post-processing and even how to do a decent critique. One of these days (if he offers one again) I’ll sign up for a workshop with Craig! https://www.youtube.com/user/TheMindfulEye
The Online Photographer: Edited by Mike Johnston. His focus is not so much on technique and equipment as it is on the tradition and history of photography, active photographers, and photography as art. You might also run across an occasional off topic post on billiard tables or espresso makers. Lots of great content that is updated daily. http://theonlinephotographer.typepad.com/the_online_photographer/
FredMiranda.com: More of a conventional anything-and-everything site that deals with digital photography: forums, reviews, techniques, lenses, buy and sell, contests, software and Photoshop techniques, etc. http://www.fredmiranda.com/
Online Career and Class Resources
If you are looking at photo education or photography as a career path, here are a few links which might help you sift through the available online photography programs that are available. They come from an organization called the Center for School, College, and Career Resources (CSCCR). These folks attempt to combine primary source data from places like the U.S. Department of Education, the National Center for Education Statistics, The Chronicle of Higher Education, and the Federal Student Aid Website (Dept. of Education) in order to assemble a user/student-friendly and searchable database. Try these CSCCR links on for size:
For online photography degree programs: https://www.affordablecollegesonline.org/degrees/photography-programs/
For a searchable database of online photography classes from accredited institutions, as well as a list of essential apps and podcasts: https://www.accreditedschoolsonline.org/online-courses/photography-classes/
For photography and art and design career paths, salary trends, recommended steps to becoming a photographer: https://www.learnhowtobecome.org/photographer/
Here are a few I find inspirational:
The Ansel Adams Gallery. http://www.anseladams.com/
Mountain Light Photography: Galen and Barbara Rowell. http://www.mountainlight.com/
Henri Cartier-Bresson. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henri_Cartier-Bresson
Sally Mann. http://sallymann.com/
Cindy Sherman. https://artsy.net/artist/cindy-Sherman
Alain Briot. http://www.beautiful-landscape.com/
Bruce Barnbaum. http://www.barnbaum.com/barnbaum/Home.html
Cole Thompson. http://www.colethompsonphotography.com/
John Paul Caponigro. http://www.johnpaulcaponigro.com/gallery/
Vivian Maier. http://www.vivianmaier.com/about-vivian-maier/
A short list for anyone wanting to improve their photography:
Understanding Exposure and Learning to See Creatively by Bryan Peterson. Excellent books to start out with.
The Camera, The Negative and The Print by Ansel Adams. The famous trilogy. Focused on film but loaded with plenty of great theory and practical information that is still very relevant in the digital age.
Photography and the Art of Seeing and Photography of Natural Things by Freeman Patterson.
The Art of Photography by Bruce Barnbaum. Excellent discussion of the creative process, developing a personal style and “seeing” as a photographer. Lots of technical explanations as well for both film and digital enthusiasts.
The Zen of Creativity by John Daido Loori. For finding your creative self through the path of the Zen arts.
Any Photoshop or Lightroom book by Scott Kelby. Practical guides for those learning these two software programs.