This guide comes from personal experience of using these creative sites to stay up to date with software and to enhance my own creative skills. Whilst working as a freelance designer, I came across many website offering tutorials on any from pdf training to digital painting. In this article I will give you a guide to creative sites available.
Learn the basics, or refine your skills with tutorials designed to inspire.
Creative Cloud tutorials are only for CC products such as Photoshop and Illustrator. Tutorials are free for all and are even embedded in the software itself.
- Advantages – Many of the tutorials are made by accredited expert whose tutorials are available on other sites. Courses will also be up to date and be actionable on the software that you have installed.
- Disadvantages – Tutorials are very short and only cover a small amount of the software. I have previously looked for more comprehensive tutorials as these are very brief (3-5 mins) and lack depth and explanation. A lot of these tutorials do not marry with previous ones so are very disjointed.
SkillShare intro:SkillShare is an online learning community with thousands of classes for creative and curious people, on topics including illustration, design, photography, video, freelancing, and more.
SkillShare tutorials do offer a wide range of tutorials from aimed at nearly every field in the creative world. SkillShare constantly offers free trial or short membership for a some fee.
- Advantages – SkillShare offers courses are quite up to date and some teachers have provable experience in their field.
- Disadvantages – SkillShare is that the teachers of some of these courses are not very experience (in my opinion) in video tutorials, so I have had to listen to many coffee cups hitting the desk, background, ums and errs when watching a tutorial.
LinkedIn Learning intro Whether you want to design a logo, create ebooks, or just learn how to use a Pen tool, our in-depth design tutorials can help. Get to know Illustrator and InDesign, explore typography, and learn the nuances of designing for print.
Lynda courses are now part of LinkedIn Learning so access to them comes with membership. Lynda offers free trials are part of the LinkedIn Premium membership.
- Advantages – Broad range of subjects which over the creative field and is available on all platforms.
- Disadvantages – I have found some of their courses to be out of date or subjects no longer in demand e.g. Acrobat X.
Pluralsight intro: With assessments, learning paths and courses authored by industry experts, our platform helps businesses and individual benchmark expertise across roles, speed up release cycles and build reliable, secure products.
Pluralsight has some of the best creative courses on the web. There has been many a time where I would go to plural sight first to check if a course I wanted to study was there. Pluralsight offers 10 day free trial.
- Advantages – Teachers are very good with high reputations who do not use other sites. One of the best features in Pluralsight is the skill assessment test that you can take to see if you really do know the software. The learning path is also clever in that it helps you learn all aspects of your chosen field.
- Disadvantages – Courses are old, the software has been updated so the course will not help the user with current software.
Udemy intro: The leading global marketplace for learning and instruction. By connecting students all over the world to the best instructors, Udemy is helping individuals reach their goals and pursue their dreams.
Out of all the tutorial sites, Udemy is the one that I have used the least. I have found that a lot of their courses are available on other tutorial sites under a free or paid for subscription. My thoughts have also been to go with the free trial elsewhere to get the same course.
- Advantages: Vast amount of courses to choose from.
- Disadvantages: Pay for individual courses rather than a subscription. Same courses are available on other sites for a subscription payment.
EnvatoTuts+ intro:EnvatoTuts+ publishes video courses, eBooks, and written tutorials to help you learn creative and technical skills.
I have used the written How to tutorials on EnvatoTuts+ many times to sharpen my skills or learn something new and this is largely a text based tutorials but of course they offer video tutorials as well. The course cover a good amount of the creative field. EnvatoTuts+ is free to use but the video tutorials come with a monthly subscription.
- Advantages – I have found the instructions on these tutorials easy to follow and do produce the results are shown in the tutorial. The video tutorials can lack concise instructions and have very long windy introductions.
- Disadvantages – Some of the tutorials are out of date and therefore a lot of the instructions cannot be carried out in the software because of the tools being changed or have been removed.
Youtube tutorials often come from video makers who are experienced in the work but are not experienced in video teaching. Lots of tutorials I have come across are actually demonstrations of how to do an illustration or create mailing lists in Word. As you should know demonstrations are not tutorials so you realise that you have spent an hour of your time watching something and not learning anything.
- Advantages – some learning institutions and qualified teachers have created YouTube channels so are creating content where you will learn your chosen subjects.
- Disadvantages – Lots of channels call themselves teachers and you will have to do a lot of searching past these people to find the channels that will help you. YouTube has no oversight to the quality of the teaching on these channels so, honestly, you could be listening to 45 mins of waffle and 15 mins of instruction in a hour long tutorial.
In closing, I would highly recommend shopping for online courses. You should look for the subject first, its availability and then the provider. The ease of wasting your money on a paid course or subscription when you could have got the course on a free trial is often to me staggering. The other option that I did not cover was using free download sites to get the course that you want.[crowdsignal poll=10494645]