It may be tempting to simply go to YouTube and watch videos on visual and photo literacy to learn more about them. However, allow me to tell you a cautionary tale before you head off into the rabbit hole of photography 'hack' videos.
Typically, the 'YouTube learning process' consists of looking for videos until you find a tutorial on a technique that you are familiar with. As a result, your photography improves slightly, and you get that dopamine hit of creating something or receiving great feedback.
To get that spark again, inevitably, you look for more videos and tutorials again. However, you haven't actually created anything new at this point. In reality, you've only improved on a concept or a topic that you already heard about. So, you start to see the same basic topics over and over, and over, again.
Feeling frustrated, you begin to look up advanced tutorials and end up struggling to connect them to your understanding, leaving you unsure if they're even relevant to you. At this moment, more often than not, motivation starts to slip, and frustration takes over.
You feel stuck or uncreative, struggling to find any exciting subjects or scenes that inspire you. You start to self-criticise, believing that your photos look basic or dull and that photography doesn't bring you the same level of enjoyment.
Eventually, you ask yourself, "What's next in learning about visual literacy?" and "What's next for my photography?" You already know the basics from YouTube, and now, you find yourself on a plateau. You feel that you've hit that transformation ceiling, and, unfortunately, we all know that popular YouTubers rarely have the time, training, teaching, or design experience to respond to comments.
As you get better at photography, you struggle to find the next step in your progression and seek options. How do I know this story? Because I've been there, too, and so have many of my students.
When is YouTube or a Facebook group great for learning?
While I implore you to avoid YouTube, Facebook, and other social media groups as your primary learning tool, there are some instances where they can be helpful as supplementary learning tools. For example, if you want to refine and improve your problem-solving skills, collaboration skills, and be a part of an active photography community, then consider joining groups and forums like the Smartphone Photography Club Community here.