The new year is the perfect time to look back over the past 12 months and celebrate your successes, but more importantly, to start growing from your failures. When you know your weaknesses, you can make goals for overcoming them. One of the best ways to strengthen your work is to learn skills focused specifically on your goals, which is easier than ever with Skillshare. And for a limited time, they’re offering our readers a special New Year offer of three months of Skillshare for just $0.99. Keep reading to find out how Skillshare can help you accomplish your goals this year.
Skillshare is an online learning platform that offers educational classes in the creative, business, tech, and lifestyle realms. Since being able to take a beautiful photo is only about 30 percent of what it takes to be a successful photographer today, having classes on so many different topics is a significant advantage that Skillshare offers. To make a living, many photographers must handle post-production, marketing, networking, accounting, customer service, and a host of other specialties. So, having a platform that offers such a wide range of classes makes Skillshare a one-stop shop for anyone who is looking to take their photography to the next level.
Time is a serious commodity for a busy photographer, which is a huge part of what makes the classes on Skillshare so effective in helping you reach your 2018 goals. The average class ranges from 20 minutes to an hour in length, and most classes are broken down into bite-sized chunks of two to five minutes that focus on one specific skill, which makes it a cinch to squeeze a class into a busy day. All you have to do is scroll through classes related to what you’d like to learn, hover over a class that looks promising, check out the ratings to see what other students thought of the class and click "save" if it fits your needs. In no time at all, you can have a library of classes saved to the "Your Classes" tab, ready to watch whenever you have time. To add convenience on top of all this time-saving, you can download the Skillshare mobile app for Apple or Android and take your classes with you on the bus, watch while you’re waiting in line, or while you’re waiting for your next client to show up! If you’re a fast learner, you can also play classes at 1.25x, 1.5x, or even 2x speeds to fit your preference.
Taking yourself to the next level means constantly learning and growing, and with the breadth of classes in the Skillshare library, you can focus on improving any aspect of your work or business that needs attention, from post-production to adding a new technique — like time-lapse photography — to your bag of tricks. I’d like to strengthen my marketing in 2018 so that I can get my work in front of more potential clients, and with classes that range from email marketing to creating brand imagery, I’m sure to find several classes that will give me a leg up this coming year. Need to get your feet wet with Photoshop so you can make your images shine? Take a Photoshop Fundamentals class with Meg Lewis. It’s got over 18,700 viewers and a 99 percent positive rating.
In this class, Meg has built a curriculum around essential techniques that will leave any student feeling confident about creating in Photoshop. She begins by easing viewers into the program with a lesson titled "Creating A New Document" and then gets into the meat of the subject with "Adjusting and Enhancing a Photograph." Here, Meg demonstrates how to make basic edits to an image with tools like Levels and the Patch Tool, but along the way, she covers a lot of useful tips that even seasoned Photoshop users may have overlooked, such as keyboard shortcuts that will speed up workflow.
In the "Cut Something Out of a Photo" section of the class, Meg covers a powerful tool that often stumps even experienced practitioners, the Pen Tool. Not only will students learn how to cut something out of a photograph, they will also learn how to create shapes, paths, and how to manipulate the Pen Tool for making exact lines.
The last half of "Photoshop Fundamentals" is incredibly handy for any artist who handles their own graphic design. Students will learn how to use the Text Tool, Layer Styles, and Text Effects, as well as how to create swatches of color from an inspiration image, which come in handy in the last section of the class where students will build a mood board. The fifth and final lesson brings together all of the previous lessons from the class in building a mood board, leaving students with a strong base to begin working in Photoshop to edit their own images or create their own graphic designs.
Do you need to get your brand-new business off the ground in 2018? Skillshare has you covered with classes on starting a photography business, writing a business plan, and branding. From business plans to marketing and brand design, there is something for every photographer to strengthen their business. If you need to get feedback, ask questions, or just talk shop, there are Skillshare communities full of students who have taken classes just like yours to use for support. Their community aspect is definitely a valuable and useful feature; you can browse other students’ projects, upload your own work, and even message with Skillshare teachers.
No matter what your photographic goals are for the New Year, whether it’s finally starting your photography business or strengthening your post-processing, Skillshare is an amazing, affordable, easy-to-use resource to help you achieve them. And for a limited time, Skillshare is offering Fstoppers readers a special offer of 3 months of Skillshare Premium membership for just $0.99. This gives you 90 whole days of unlimited access to Skillshare’s over 18,000 classes all for less than a buck. Just click here to redeem this special New Year offer, and start learning today.
Lead image by Pok Rie via Pexels.