I don’t know about you, but I personally like seeing all of the cool things people have done. Seeing something that was shot beautifully, or an animation that moves fluidly or is goofy looking, all inspire me to try new things and expand on what I know. There are a lot of websites and other resources out there for tips, techniques, and just general cool things. Being a video editor/colorist/motion graphics/animator/additional hat wearer, there are plenty of things that I regularly look to for inspiration and information in my field. Here are my top 10 resources:

1) Lynda.com
Lynda.com has been around since 1995 and has built up a website with many great resources for training and tutorials on many subjects, not just video related. You can watch video tutorials that range from a complete 13-hour long total training on Adobe Premiere, down to specific, targeted topics, like best practices for photographing cars.
You do have to pay to use the majority of the content from Lynda.com, but the pricing is very reasonable, and it’s tiered so you can choose what you want. If you know you only want to take a specific course, you can sign up for a basic one month plan. A premium plan gives you access to downloadable project files, so you can look at the process on your system and go hands-on.
All of the videos I’ve watched through here are professionally made and high quality. Plus, they offer a free trial period to make sure it’s right for you. For the price, you can’t beat it.

2) creativecow.net
Creativecow.net is a great community site that offers articles and tutorials for many creative fields, but the forums are the big draw for me. Professionals and amateurs alike can discuss programs and ask questions about the things that they do. I’ve come here many times in the past when I’ve run into an issue, and I’ve had good luck finding a solution. I’ve also posted a few questions and had some discussion with others regarding a problem I was having with Premiere. Overall, it’s a great resource that shouldn’t be overlooked.

3) The Color Correction Handbook
While studying Davinci Resolve for color correction and grading, I was looking for useful resources to help learn the program. This book was written by Alexis Van Hurkman, who has been a writer, director, and colorist for years. He also wrote the Davinci Resolve manual, if that tells you anything. This book goes into some techniques for various software, as well as the background behind how light works, how our eyes work, and the science of color. It really digs into why things are done a certain way, how they can affect the color, and how you and accommodate for it when you correct and grade a scene. It’s a long and detailed book, but it has a lot of great information about the art and science of color.

4) videocopilot.net
Andrew Kramer’s website grew from some cool tutorials and ideas to a site with a large number of tutorials, plugins, and FX products to help make your stuff look even better. He’s gone on to do a ton of commercial work, including helping out on Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and working with Bad Robot and ILM. His tutorials are fun, creative and informative. Some of the tutorials use the products he has made, but many of them are designed purely in After Effects. He has several free scripts and plugins that you can use to help make your next After Effects project easier.

5) mtmograph.com
I actually worked with the founder of Mt. Mograph for a while, and he always had a very unique and creative way of thinking. He has posted a series of “summits” for interesting techniques and tutorials, mostly for After Effects. Matt has also provided a few freebie plugins and scripts, as well as a few paid ones, that aim to make certain tasks in After Effects easier.

6) nofilmschool.com
Similar to creativecow.net, nofilmschool.com is a community site with articles on current and popular topics, and a large community of people who help each other out. You get to see information and insight from people who work in the field and do the stuff you might be trying to do. It’s an interesting site that promotes working together to learn new things.

7) rocketjump.com
What started out as Freddie Wong and a few of his friends making some funny videos has grown into a massive media conglomerate. They have their own TV series and have done work for major companies, but they still make those funny videos, too. They have behind the scenes looks at how they did the special effects in their videos, and what gear and programs they used. It’s a great place to see a lot of entertaining, usually video game-centric, shorts.

8) vimeo.com
Youtube is everywhere, but vimeo.com seems to be the place to find very well made videos. This is probably because it was founded as a place for creatives to show off their work. The website staff picks their favorite videos, and you can find several good examples of work on here, from scripting and cinematography to editing and color.

9) dribble.com
My co-worker and designer extraordinaire, Coe, turned me on to this site. They call it ”Show and Tell for designers,” and it’s a place to display their work. I go there to look at all of the cool new trends in visual design, as well as the animated GIFs that are often amazingly complex for being “simple” artwork. Seeing some of the fluidity of movement in the animations is just awesome, and very inspiring.

10) 1001freefonts.com and fontsquirrel.com
1001freefonts.com has tons of great fonts that are free for personal use, and some of them are able to be used for commercial use, too. Fontsquirrel.com is similar, but only has fonts that are able to be used commercially.
Whenever I see a crazy font, it usually inspires me to do something fun with it. Aquiline Two on Font Squirrel, for example, looked like a cool ink-like font, so I made it appear on an old paper texture with an ink splatter effect.

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