Why having a community can really help!
You take a deep breath, look through the viewfinder, and snap! You've just taken an amazing photo. Prepare to ship that thing into Photoshop and hide it away with the rest of your awesome photos. Wait, what's that? You want more than just to hide your pictures? Then consider joining a photography forum, or something of the like! You'd be amazed how much you can benefit from a community of like-minded people. Just a few benefits include:
One of the first and most important things you'll be able to find through a photography forum is a series of, or an individual helpful person who can really help you along in developing your skills as a photographer. Imagine having someone, or even a few people, seeing your picture and giving you plenty of positive critical analysis. Over the course of a few months, this kind of mentorship can drastically affect your photos, eventually improving them to a more professional quality. You can also receive a lot of help regarding what kind of gear to use and when, so that you're not shooting in the rain with a bunch of gear that can't handle it!
Can you imagine always having someone to look at your pictures and admire? Or having someone who's always interested in talking about your latest shoot, or seeing your most recent shots, just because? If you don't already have this kind of person in your life then joining a forum would be greatly beneficial to you. Not only that, but you can eventually talk to this person, get to know them, and if you live anywhere nearby, eventually meet up and take some shots together.
You can imagine that after a few months of uploading your quality pictures and talking to a large community that you would eventually gain a little popularity and "fame", so to speak, as a photographer. Eventually it might even become possible for your pictures to be spread to other places around the internet and to gain some fame of their own.
Probably one of the most valuable things you can gain through joining an online forum is perspective. That's right. Over time, you'll eventually learn about completely different ways of approaching photography, and even how to approach the most basic ideas. Your composition skills could easy change after some time with others, however most importantly is that you'll find a style that you really identify with and can create through your art.
Well that forum isn't gonna find itself! Once you start looking around for a community that you would really like to join, that looks ernest and sincere, then join up! You don't have to visit everyday, but every once in awhile just stop by, upload a picture, and start talking to others. There are plenty of options so be sure you like what you're joining, or just join multiple. It's great fun, and I hope you can find your own photography forum to help you out.
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