Students come to me, pages of notes in hand, flustered and confused about how watching a gazillion (yes, that's a precise number) videos online has not helped them better understand photography. They know terminology and turn their camera dials, but their ability to metabolize all this information together in a helpful way is nonexistent.
The temptation is real, people. Countless free online videos promise better understanding of your camera, or how photography works. And so many online teachers offer great tips. But here's the trouble with all this limitless accessible free knowledge: it's not contextualized.
Photography is one of those art forms where the information builds. When taught well (and cohesively) each piece adds a layer, like building a pyramid.
Imagine trying to build a pyramid with a thousand blocks at your feet. Each block is identified by it's name, and a definition of the name. But you're given no instructions on the order the blocks go in, connection between the blocks, or how they interrelate.
Now imagine building the same pyramid with the same thousand blocks, and a guide to help you figure out which pieces go first, how the materials support the weight of the lighter or heavier blocks, and where each differently shaped piece fits in the whole pyramid building plan. This is what a great teacher can do -- they can connect the dots, explain complicated processes in easy to understand terms, and show you the best path to understanding photography for how you learn.
So, here's your homework: stop watching YouTube videos and find a great instructor. If you don't already know one I'm happy to help you learn your camera in the best way for you. Click here to learn more about 1-on-1 sessions (via Skype or in person) and upcoming classes I teach.
When has a great teacher helped you overcome a learning block? I'd love to hear your stories in the comments.