In no specific order, my six favorite Photography websites:
1) B&H: (website is here)
B&H is a Manhattan, NY-based store which sells equipment for Photographers, Audiophiles, and Videophiles. They also sell all kinds of computer equipment (they are a certified Mac dealer) and other various accessories (i.e. furniture, clothing for photographers, etc…) for pros and amateurs alike. In my opinion, it is the finest store on the internet. That includes stores for any kind of product…even Amazon. I have never been to B&H’s brick and mortar store in New York, but going there is high on my bucket list.
B&H’s website is organized and designed exceptionally well…it makes shopping for stuff efficient, educational, and fun. I could (and do) burn up hours at a time reading information on all kinds of photography equipment at B&H’s site.
Through personal experience, I have found reviews posted by those who own the products to be relatively trustworthy for the most part. Obviously, I would weight the reviews which are packed with details much more heavily than the ones which aren’t.
They also buy and sell used equipment…their used product ratings are very reliable. I’ve bought countless used items from them, and I’ve sold countless items to them as well. They make the process as simple and painless as dealing with your next door neighbor (the one you like, not the other one).
Also…they have a very comprehensive return policy. If the product is damaged or defective in any way, B&H will email you a shipping label so you don’t have to pay a penny for sending it back. I recommend you keep the boxes they ship items in…they are strong and handy for a variety of uses. I reuse their boxes when I sell stuff on eBay.
2) Scott Kelby’s Site: (website is here)
Want to learn practically anything photography-related? Techniques, Photoshop, Lightroom, Using Flashes/strobes, Modeling, Landscape Photography, etc…Kelbyone.com is a virtual online university for anyone who wants to learn about anything related to photography.
When I first started out learning about photography as a hobby, I learned a TON of helpful advice from Kelby and the other instructors on the website…and to this day I still learn and research information from new videos uploaded there. He employs experienced pros in the industry from a variety of genres to help guide you through the comprehensive instructional videos.
Kelby’s site is how I found Matt Kloskowski’s Photoshop videos, which became my gold mine of instruction for post-processing photographs.
3) Ming Thein’s blog (website is here)
Ming is an incredibly gifted writer…and he’s also one of the finest photographers out there. His blog is a virtual bottomless well of thought-provoking ideas and inspirational photography.
You know you’re reading a good blog post if you re-read it several times, and each time pick up new thoughts and ideas. Ming’s work, both in writing and through his photography, always provides interesting and unique perspective.
4) Digital Photography Review (website is here)
DPR is a wonderful resource of detailed and accurate reviews of practically any camera and lens, as well as other photography equipment. This is where I always go first to get information on a camera or lens I am interested in purchasing.
Their reviews are more in-depth than any website I know of; they are chock full of helpful information, including a ratings scale for quality comparisons. They also have a member’s forum which is helpful to get feedback from others who may know the answer to a question you have.
5) Digital Photography School (website is here)
DPS is an education-based website littered with helpful tips, solutions to common questions and problems, and instruction for beginners, experienced pros, and everyone in-between.
Like Digital Photography Review’s website, they also offer reviews on photography equipment which I find to be quite useful. Their articles are written by experienced photographers who have a wealth of perspective on a given subject. And the articles, generally speaking, are an easy read and well-written.
6) Strobist (website is here)
I couldn’t compile this list without mentioning Strobist’s blog. Strobist is a website dedicated to learning and discussing the use of strobes and flashes. It is the single most helpful website for me when I want to learn/research anything about artificial light.
Their blog post “Lighting 101” (check it out here) is a must-read for anyone who is interested in learning the basics behind using an on-or-off-camera flash.