video tutorial

Learning from the pros on YouTube

Earlier today, I was catching up on my RSS reading and dipped into Search Engine Watch (Yeah, I have a dark past working in SEO, and I like to keep an eye on recent developments), when I found a post about the recent Google Doodle - and how it caught the eyes of the world, where all sorts of talented people decided to play the ridiculously low-tech instrument (I mean... Who plays a search engine? Rage against the Machine's Tom Morello - that's who). It rekindled my passion for Youtube, and I decided to have a look around and see if I could find any good photography video tutorials. Turns out that was easy to say and even easier to do...

Ladies and gents, without further mincing of words:

Rick Sammon's top 10 photography tips

Night photography

Full photography school

Episode 1:

Also, see the full 13-episode series here.

Light painting tutorial

Make your own macro lens

Make Magazine made a great little video tutorial of my Macro Photography for £10 article:

Wedding photography

Photoelasticity Birefringence Photography

Using a softbox

High key lighting setups

A great stop motion inspirational movie

So there we have it - a metric load of fabulous learning, inspiration, and general fun on YouTube. So the next time you're stuck for inspiration, why not just search for 'photography' on YouTube, and see what it spits out? You never know what you might learn by accident...

Shotblox: photoblogging made simple


There are millions, maybe even billions, of photographs published on the web and quite a few different content management systems to handle them.

How many picture-specific content management systems are there – you know, ones that really focus on your photographs and aren’t laden down with extraneous features that detract from the real image? If you’re thinking: ‘Not that many,’ then maybe Issac and Kasey Kelly, over at Kelly Creative Tech have developed something to fill this niche. is a simple-to-use piece of photoblogging software where the photograph is the centre of attention. Once photos have been uploaded directly from your harddrive or from Adobe Lightroom they are saved in galleries and then each gallery is displayed as a clean block of images. Click on an image and it enlarges. Yes, it really is that simple. I was curious so I tried it out.

A funky user interface should help you along as you're building your new site

It took me a few minutes to sign up, a few more minutes to select a typeface colour and a background colour, and a few minutes to upload some images. Almost before I knew it my distinctly amateur-looking photographs were being presented in a professional-looking format, and I didn’t even have to use the video tutorial. There’s an option to notify your friends or followers of your new posts via FaceBook or Twitter, and if you get horribly stuck the Kelly brothers are an email away. My photos are accessed via the Shotblox subdomain, (, if you’re that interested) but if you’ve your own domain, you can point that at

As Issac told me, Shotblox is really about what the photographer wants. It is primarily user-led with the emphasis being on simple: simple to use and simple in looks. They want the photography to stand out.

So if you do decide that Shotblox is for you, what will it cost you? Well, there are a range of packages on offer from a free sample of ten photos through to unlimited numbers of photos and unlimited bandwidth for US$500 a year, which means that if you’re serious about showing off your photos, there’s probably a package perfect for you.

Take a look for yourself at