25 best FREE online photo courses

25 Best FREE Online Photo Courses

I started the New Year by looking for information that could be helpful to our clients and readers. One thing I always find myself interested in is learning about the art of taking photos. I went looking for topics I could learn inexpensively and came across this article that describes 25 photo courses that are…FREE!

What I like about many of them is that they are always available and quite a few are from university sources like the first one below.

Truth be known I’m not a very good photographer. I use my mobile phone for most of my shots. But in reviewing the recommended courses a few focused on things I believe can even help an amateur like me. Here they are:


For Beginners

Introduction to Photography and Related Media: Video lectures from a semester-long undergraduate-level course at MIT. Covers the fundamentals of analog and digital SLR, film exposure and development, darkroom techniques, digital imaging, and studio lighting.
Level: Beginner | Duration: Self-paced | Always Available

Basics of Photography: The Complete Guide: A comprehensive resource for beginning photographers, compiled by the friendly folks at Lifehacker. Starts by explaining how a digital camera works and goes on to explain image composition, technique, and editing. Mostly in text format, interspersed with a few explanatory videos.
Level: Beginner | Duration: Self-paced | Always Available

Cambridge in Colour: A great site for beginners to browse tutorials and have their questions answered by a community of learners. And no, that extra “u” in “Colour” is not a typo — this is Cambridge, UK we’re talking about!
Level: Beginner | Duration: Self-paced | Always Available

Strobist: Perhaps the most popular resource for beginners to learn how to use light and their flashes, especially their Lighting 101 course that many photographers swear by.
Level: Beginner to Intermediate | Duration: Self-paced | Always Available

This next course and the ones that follow are more specific.

Pixels After Dark: Shooting the Night: An outstanding talk by three-time Olympic photographer Jeff Cable on shooting images at night.
Level: Intermediate | Duration: 1.5 hours | Always Available

The Art of Photography: This course from Australia’s RMIT University covers both the academic and practical aspects of photography. Instructor Dr. Shane Hulbert, an artist-academic whose work has been shown in Victoria’s National Gallery, covers photography as a visual art practice, explores the work of contemporary photographers, and introduces the idea of a “digital darkroom”.
Level: Beginner | Duration: 4 weeks | Next Start Date: April 28, 2014 was when it was first offered and is still shown in the listing

Documentary Photography and Photojournalism: Still Images of a World in Motion: Want to be the next Steve McCurry? This MIT course for budding photojournalists course requires some prior background in photography, e.g. knowing the difference between f stops and T stops, and being able to find one’s way around a camera.
Level: Intermediate | Duration: 4 weeks | Always Available

I think you can see from these courses I’ve listed that there is quite a bit you can learn. Let me also tell you that one of the items offers a link to Udemy to learn to set up a smugmug photo website. Well, we here at dotPhoto also offer our members a photo website that’s FREE… and we’ll help you build it. You can learn about creating your dotPhoto website here:

You’ll have to become a member to take advantage of the website creation, but once you become a member… and it’s FREE to join… you’re welcome to compare the services and let us know what you think.

You’ll find all the recommended courses mentioned above and more at this address:

One more thing, at the end of the article there’s mention of a TED talk about “impossible” photography, but the link didn’t show up for me. If that happens to you here’s the link: https://www.ted.com/talks/erik_johansson_impossible_photography

Contact us if you like.
Walter Krieg

Author: dotphoto

Glenn Paul is President and Co-Founder of dotPhoto, which began life in 2000 as a photo printing service and now also distributes user-generated media in Flash, video and on cell phones.

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