Although it's important to find inspiration everywhere, there are some great places to look online. Whether you're wanting to connect with other photographers or learn a new technique, today's Quick Tip will have something useful for you.
Where else did you think we were going to start? Flickr is a huge community of photographers, spread across the world. You can find other people with similar interests to yourself, join groups, and connect with photographers in your local area.
Flickr is also (predominantly, in fact) a brilliant way to store and backup your photographs online. A "pro" account increases the amount of storage you have, and makes the service infinitely more usable.
Completely dedicated to lighting, Strobist is a blog packed with useful information - whether you're just starting out as a photographer, or work as a professional. The best place to begin is their Lighting 101 series, explaining every aspect of photographic lighting.
iStockPhoto is - as the name suggests - a stock photography website. We're skirting the obvious use of the site for selling your images, and instead suggesting it as a place to find inspiration. With 6.5 million images available, iStockPhoto has every possible photo shoot, country, or assignment covered.
It's a great way to investigate how a particular subject has been approached before, allowing you to recreate a particular photo you like, or aim for something radically different. If stock photography is something you shoot and sell as a side project, this site holds a wealth of information about the type of images that "sell well".
Although Flickr has - to a degree - cut down on the abundance of individual "photo blogs", these are still a great way to investigate a particular photographer's style and technique. Photoblogs.org is a directory containing hundreds of links to high quality photography blogs. Pick a few you like, subscribe to their RSS feed, and enjoy the daily inspiration it brings.
Similar to Flickr (but aimed at a far wider audience), DeviantArt is a place to share your photography work and connect with others. Although photography only makes up a small sub-section of the site, you'll find hundreds of thousands of images to browse through - on any subject imaginable.
One of my favourite sites at the moment, Pictory features regular "showcases" of photography on a particular theme, coupled with the story behind each image. This creates a wealth of interesting information, fascinating not just for the photography but also the narrative.
The latest showcase is entitled "Neighbourhood Treasure", a delightful collection of neighbourhood haunts and hangouts, coupled with the reason why each image makes a particular person feel "at home".
Share Your Favourite Site
If you have a favourite website that wasn't listed here, go ahead and let us know in the comments. There's no such thing as too much inspiration and it would be great to build a big collection of useful links!