Motivation is a photography blog that discusses the creative aspects of photography. The posts will include thoughts about images and their interpretation, photographers and their work, technique, workflow, my ongoing projects, and perhaps even the occasional off topic rant.

How Do You Learn?

I recently had a very interesting insight into myself....or, more accurately, how I learn.

I have always been a 'book learner'. By that I mean that my most efficient way to learn something new has been to get a good book and sit down with it and digest it at my own speed, making sure that I understand everything as the lessons advance. That is how I learned Photoshop and that was the way I made it through various institutions of higher learning. That's not to say that lectures weren't important. But, in a pinch, I always felt that I could get most of what I needed out of the book with lectures and other multimedia highlighting what the most important and practical issues were.

Well, I surprised myself recently. Several months back, I bought a couple of Michael Reichmann's downloadable video tutorials from The Luminous Landscape. I did this in the hopes of learning something new, but also because I thought that a video with Reichmann and Jeff Schewe would be entertaining. And it was, but along the way I surprised myself by feeling that I was learning more than I thought I would.

With this insight, I pursued the idea that perhaps I didn't know as much about my process of learning as I thought I did. So I followed up on this by buying Brooks Jensen's workshop PDF and Folio tutorials on DVD and loved them. In fact, I previously reviewed the PDF tutorial. Once again, I learned a great deal....even more so from this tutorial as I really had no insight into how to make a PDF book prior to watching the DVD. I found the same to be true when I ordered an HDR training DVD from Kelby Training. I have another DVD from Tony Sweet coming in the mail.

I thought I knew the most efficient way that I was able to learn, but am glad that I ended trying out a new approach that is both enjoyable and effective. If you haven't tried learning from a multimedia DVD it just might be an unexpectedly worthwhile approach. It was for me.