Here Are the Top Photography and Filmmaking Channels on YouTube and Why You Should Be Following Them in 2020

Here Are the Top Photography and Filmmaking Channels on YouTube and Why You Should Be Following Them in 2020

With over 20 million YouTube channels on the platform in 2019, it's important to stand out. Check out a selection of my favorite YouTube channels in the photography and filmmaking category that you should be following today. 

We are in the heart of the social media generation, and it seems like just about every person you talk to wants to start a YouTube channel. The fact is, anybody can start one, regardless of your age, gender, or culture. That being said, with so much content being released everyday, it can be challenging to know where to find the most reliable answers to your specific questions. In this article, discover the channels who are making a splash in the industry today. Below is my list of personal favorites, but if there are other people you think should be on this list, leave their links in the comments.

The Channels

Fstoppers

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There's a reason Fstoppers is on the top of my list of people to subscribe to this coming year, and it should be on yours too. I can confidently say, if it wasn't for the Fstoppers YouTube channel, I would not have been the photographer I am today. Rewind eight years ago to when I first picked up my camera and wanted to start learning about photography, I didn't know where to start. That's when I was lucky enough to discover the Fstoppers YouTube channel.

I quickly realized that it was the one-stop shop for everything I needed to get off the ground in my photography. From business tips and behind the scenes of photoshoots to in-depth Photoshop tutorials, this channel really has it all. If you know anyone who is just starting out with photography or filmmaking, be sure to share this channel and help jumpstart their career today. 

Lindsay Adler Photography

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Lindsay Adler is an established fashion and beauty photographer known for her graphic, bold style and her creative way of shaping light and color to consistently churn out striking images. Whenever I scroll through her Instagram feed or website, I am constantly blown away by what she creates and always wonder how she photographed her images or what lighting technique she used.

My favorite thing about her channel is an ongoing weekly series Adler started called "Photo Deconstruction." In this inspiring series, Adler dives deep into the details of her favorite photos and breaks down how those images were shot, edited, and the inspiration behind them. If you haven't seen her channel, I highly recommend go checking it out! You will walk away inspired to go out and be creative. 

B&H

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B&H: it's the camera store we all know and love. Just like their headquarters in Midtown Manhattan is like the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory of anything photo or video-related, so is their YouTube channel.

The B&H YouTube channel is the first place I go to see the latest and greatest gear in action and to hear from the photography masters in their premier series called "The B&H Event Space." With a host of informative videos ranging from the best settings to use for shooting video to extensive gear breakdowns, you might just not want to leave.

Cody Wanner

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Cody Wanner is an upcoming YouTube star who started his channel just two years ago. Through relentless work and dedication, Wanner began to gain traction and build an audience. Cody's channel is centered around entrepreneurship in the creative space and inspiring the next generation of doers.

One of the things that keep me coming back to Cody's channel each week is his growth-centered mindset and his overall positive attitude toward the community around him. One of the most notable things about Wanner's channel is the #NoSmallCreator movement that he started. The No Small Creator mindset he adopted has helped encourage the creators out there without big subscriber counts to keep creating and uploading. I instantly resonated with this sentiment, and watching his channel helps remind me that my voice is important and encourages me to start creating the life I want to live today. 

Dan Mace

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Dan Mace is one of the most innovative and creative filmmakers in the YouTube space. On a consistent weekly basis, he uploads thought-provoking, original films about the topics he cares about: climate change, giving back, and breaking stereotypes. 

The thing that stands out to me about Dan's work is his inventive and unique style of editing. In all of his videos, he maintains the perfect balance of classical storytelling techniques and uses his talent in music and animation to bring the audience along the journey with him. I never know what to expect from his channel, and that's what keeps me coming back week after week. A must-watch series on his channel is "The Not Normal Show," where he asks people around the world to send him ideas they need help making a reality, and he makes their dreams come true. He is an example of not only a great filmmaker, but also a great person. 

Aputure

https://cdn.fstoppers.com/styles/full/s3/media/2019/12/15/screen_shot_2019-12-15_at_2.13.09_pm.pngIf you're in the market for new LED lights, the Aputure lights are typically at the top of someone’s wish list because of their price, reliability, and power. Not only is Aputure one of the top manufacturers of LED lighting, it also ranks on the top of my list for YouTube channels to look out for.

My favorite thing about this channel is the weekly series they started, "The 4 Minute Film School." In this insightful series, instructors from Aperture’s A-team team up with today's top industry leaders in cinematography and lighting to break down how they light certain scenes and use light to enhance their storytelling. This channel is a must-follow for anyone interested in taking their lighting skills to the next level. 

Film Riot

https://cdn.fstoppers.com/styles/full/s3/media/2019/12/15/screen_shot_2019-12-15_at_2.14.26_pm.pngFilm Riot is at the heart of most DIY builds. The channel is run by the film buffs, the Connolly brothers, and with thirty years combined in the film business, they have a wealth of knowledge to share. Through their entertaining and humorous weekly videos that cover a diverse range of topics like how to use After Effects to make special effects or insightful behind the scenes looks into some of their biggest productions, Film Riot continues to stand out.

My favorite thing about this channel is their DIY builds. From the very beginning of my filmmaking career, Film Riot has always been the first places I go to utilize what I already have and become a storyteller. This channel is a must-follow for anyone interested in improving their filmmaking skills and looking to show their story in a unique and innovative way.  Go take a look at this channel, and start becoming a better filmmaker today. 

Mango Street

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In the modern age of social media, our attention spans are shrinking at a rapid pace. Unfortunately, on YouTube, more often than not, there is a host of videos that are mere fluff or clickbait. However, when I discovered Mango Streets' channel, it was a breath of fresh air. When you arrive at the channel YouTube banner, it says it all: Mango Street makes photo and video-related tutorials that don't waste your time. 

My favorite thing about this channel is their concise and engaging way of relaying information to the audience. After watching any of their videos, I always walk away with a fresh dose of knowledge to improve my photography and filmmaking without spending extra time behind my computer. If you're an amateur or a seasoned pro, this channel is for you! 

This Guy Edits

https://cdn.fstoppers.com/styles/full/s3/media/2019/12/15/screen_shot_2019-12-15_at_2.19.15_pm.pngAs a professional in this business, I am always looking to expand my skillset, and editing has always been one of those things I wanted to learn. I just didn't know where to start. Recently though, I discovered Sven Pages' channel, and I am so glad I did.

Sven is truly a master of his craft. With over 20 years in the business and having cut films for James Cameron, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and James Franco, he has a wealth of knowledge, and he isn't afraid to share it. He takes you in depth to his project timelines, breaks down classic scenes, and brings the audience into the cutting room of some of the industry's leading editors to hear about their processes. Editing is an art form, and Sven is the master artist. I encourage you to head to his channel, and start learning how to piece together the stories that mean the most to you. You will be glad you did. 

PiXimperfect

https://cdn.fstoppers.com/styles/full/s3/media/2019/12/15/screen_shot_2019-12-15_at_2.25.30_pm.pngPiXimperfect, hosted by Unmesh Dinda, is the first channel I think of when I hear the word Photoshop. PiXimperfect is a channel that serves as a completely free hub for you to learn the ins and outs of Photoshop and Lightroom. On an almost daily basis, Umnesh uncovers the deepest secrets that this powerful software holds and relays them over to his audience in entertaining, easy to watch tutorials.

His teaching style is truly one of a kind. I not only walk away learning a new tool in Photoshop, but learn the why behind it as well. Unlock your imagination and take your images to new heights. Subscribe to the PiXimperfect YouTube channel today. 

Over to You

Which YouTube channels do you subscribe to for constant inspiration and guidance? Share your favorite photography and filmmaking YouTube channels and why you follow them in the comments below. 

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43 Comments

Previous comments

Mango Street
Julia Trotti
Evan Raft
Kai W
Joe Allam
Jamie Windsor
Quentin Decaillet

Jorge Pastrana's picture

MY CHANNEL HAS MORE SUBSCRIBERS THAN ALL THOSE CHANNELS COMBINED

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCyPV3zX62aDgQWLfSL12K4w?view_as=subscriber

You ain't fooling anyone.

Musing Eye's picture

It must be true if he's using ALL CAPS though, right?

its on the internet so it has to be true.

Adler is cool. Not a fan of the rest of them. I think the best photography channel is The Art of Photography. I also really like Matias Burling, Thomas Heaton, The Angry Photographer (well, I don't really like him as a human being- he's pretty annoying- but the dude knows his stuff), Jamie Windsor is really good, Sean Tucker, and a newish channel called Lost Rhodes looks like it has some promise! 😊

Musing Eye's picture

I do a lot with composites, so PiXimperfect is an amazing resource for Photoshop work. Even if you're not into composite work, if you do any editing at all you should check out Unmesh. Definitely should have been at the top of this list rather than the bottom.

Lindsay Adler is another +1 agreement here. The recent breakdown videos are very nice in particular.

Other channels:
* Brooke Shaden - inspiration for whatever you like to create, but her fine art insights are amazing.
* Nemanja Sekulic - another great Photoshop / Special Effects specialist
* Phlearn - another +1 from another commenter here already
* Daniel Norton - deep experience in portrait and fashion photography
* Clifton Lofthouse - I think I ran into him just before he started submitting to FStoppers. Good to see another artists point of view, both from speed edits (more for concepts/inspiration) and details of techniques

Robbie Keene's picture

The glaring omission to me is Adorama. Lots of presenters covering everything you could imagine. Also absent from your list is LastXwitness, E6 Vlogs, Sean Tucker, Fototripper, Nick Page, Thomas Heaton...this list could be a mile long and I won't get them all. I would say look around because there are so many good Youtube channels related to photography.

Simon Patterson's picture

Kevin the Basic Filmmaker is another one I'd certainly add.

Simon Patterson's picture

Curtis Judd - especially for the audio aspect of film making
Dave Dugdale - real world tests
Kevin the Basic Filmmaker - for beginners in film making

While PiXimperfect is my favorite they all deserve the credit for their amazing work. Congratulations to all.

is 1 eyebrow is distracting, he should shave it so it looks normal.

Alexander Borromeo's picture

I think you should give SEAN TUCKER a little bit of your time. I enjoy his relaxed approach and calm demeanor of being a photographer. His recent YouTube video on "editing" was a perfect response to the question of how much editing is enough editing.