12 Essentials to Take Your Photo Skills to the Next Level
Photography is everywhere, from cool blogs to creative baby photos to magazines and so much in between. It only makes sense that you’re looking to take some of your own killer shots. If mastering your camera is on your list of things to learn, we’ve got all the photo essentials you need right here. Bonus: They make excellent photography gifts for yourself or someone you love!
1. Jenna Kutcher’s Intro to DSLR Photography Online Class ($39): If you’ve ever picked up a digital camera and been a little bit overwhelmed by all the knobs and buttons, this class is for you. It’ll de-mysitfy the DSLR camera and have you taking pretty pictures in no time.
2. Irene Kim Shepherd’s How to Crush It on Instagram Online Class ($29): One of the reasons to take good photos is to throw ’em on Insta’ and share them with the people we love, near and far. Whatever your reason is, this class will help you get the traction you’re looking for.
3. Sunnylife Bronte Underwater Camera ($20): Under the sea shots are just as worthy as above agua photos. Add this versatile baby to your arsenal, and you’ll never be limited by a little bit of moisture again.
4. Impossible Polaroid 600 Camera + Film Set ($122): If you want to get started with photography, Polaroids are one of the most stress-free and fun-filled ways to do it. So much of it is out of your control — you gotta just point, shoot and see what happens.
5. Modern Scrapbooking Online Class and Kit ($49): Once you’ve got those epic shots, learn how to incorporate them into the memories you’ll keep for the rest of your life with this class and kit. It’ll get you on the ground and running in just a little bit more than the time it takes you to snap a photo.
6. Photojojo Phoneography Starter Kit ($30): If you don’t want to invest in a camera, but want to have a little more than your phone’s factory lens at your disposal, grab this phoneography starter kit. It’ll give your images an extra kick, and it’s all super fun to use too.
7. Sakura Considine’s Adobe Lightroom Online Class ($39): Once you’ve got good shots, the next step is figuring out how to edit them. This class will teach you how to edit to perfection in Adobe Lightroom.
8. Casetify Bluetooth Selfie Stick ($35): Selfies are all the rage, and they don’t seem to be going out of style anytime soon. If you really want good shots of you and your crew, investing in a selfie stick is the way to go.
9. Photojojo Polarizer Lens ($20): This little gadget blocks light rays at specific angles to give you the most crisp and clean images you’ve ever taken with your phone… ever. One huge bonus is that it’s tiny and mega portable, so you don’t have to worry about hauling some big piece of equipment around to get good shots.
10. Impossible Instant Lab Photo Printer and Film Set ($193): Never be chained to one place when it comes to printing photos again with this wonderfully portable printer and film set. Transform your phone photos to IRL images in a flash!
11. Photojojo Magnetic Photo Rope ($12): Once you’ve shot, edited and printed your glorious images, the next task is finding a lovely way to show them all off. This photo rope utilizes magnets, so your images are never damaged.
12. Intro to Travel Photography Online Class ($33): Hold on to those fab vacation memories with the help of this class. You’ll be racking up the likes on Insta in no time.
What are your photo taking must haves? Tell us about ’em on Twitter @BritandCo!
Your relationship with your finances is one of the most important relationships you'll ever have, and you can't avoid it. That said, for many of us, the pandemic only added to our financial stress. If you find yourself feeling frazzled, just remember that financial insecurity isn't a net-worth issue — it's a mindset issue. And, we happen to have plenty of advice on how to turn your money mindset around so you can take charge of your funds once and for all.
To start, feeling secure begins with a strong foundation, and there's no better time than now to get started stacking the bricks. It's easy to get swept up in the January "new year, new me" mentality, but really? Any time is the right time to get yourself in order. You don't need to wait for a new year, a new moon, the right moment, or a sign from above. You don't even have to start on the first day of the month — you just need to start.
Introducing NerdWallet: A Safe and Reliable Money App
To help with that, we've put together a list of the just-right-for-you ways that NerdWallet can help you monitor your financial outlook. Haven't heard of them yet? NerdWallet is a personal finance company that helps consumers make smarter financial decisions. Their website and app let you compare different financial products, find articles and tools to make financial decisions with confidence, and keep tabs on your finances (hey there, credit score, I see you!) all in one place. Plus, NerdWallet has over 75,000 glowing reviews in the App Store (and a 4.8 star rating) if you want to read up on any more testimonials.
Tim Chen, NerdWallet's CEO and co-founder, started this financial journey in 2009 after his sister needed help finding a credit card. Even with an economics degree and a Wall Street background, it took awhile for Tim to find the right recommendation (so don't feel too bad when it takes you a while, too). Their mission is to bring clarity to all of life's financial decisions.
So it's safe to say that NerdWallet is a pretty good sherpa for your journey, too.
Get the most from your money
Did you know that the money you park in a savings account can lose value? Harsh, but true. If your money isn't earning interest that's on pace with inflation it will actually be worth less to you in the future. And if the bank charges fees? Forget about it. Make sure you're earning the interest you deserve and come out on top. NerdWallet has researched dozens of financial institutions to help consumers find the best options. The hard work has already been done for you, so you can just select the account that works best for you and your nest egg.
Keep an eye on everything, securely
Once everything is set up, tracking and managing your finances is what will keep the money machine running smoothly. You can create an account either through the site or the app and link your bank accounts, then keep tabs on all your finances in one place. Get a clear picture of your saving and spending, get insights into how to master your money, and even build your credit score all in one place.
Get extra credit points
Do you have the best credit card for your lifestyle? Some cards give cash back on every purchase, ones with travel perks, and ones that charge way less interest than you're paying now. NerdWallet takes the guesswork out of choosing the right credit card with simple side-by-side comparisons of different credit cards so that you feel confident choosing the right one. Whatever you want to do, NerdWallet can help you find the best credit card to get it done.
Know your options for settling down
Mortgage rates are pretty low and it looks like they're going to stay that way for awhile, so buying a home might be the move sooner than you think. But there's so much more to a mortgage than just the interest rate! To help you choose a mortgage lender, NerdWallet has in-depth reviews on multiple lenders in a mixture of categories so you get the home loan with the mortgage rate, term, and fees that's right for you.
Settle an old score
NerdWallet helps you monitor your credit score for free and helps you see how little things (like raising the limit on your credit card or paying your bills on time) can increase your score. NerdWallet partners with TransUnion® to provide your VantageScore® 3.0, based on information in your TransUnion® credit report. Your score and credit report information are updated weekly. But that's not even close to all:
- They provide you with tips from experts on how you could build or optimize your credit score
- You'll get a detailed look at your credit score and all the factors that go into it—your payment history, credit utilization, the age and type of accounts, balances, and any recent inquiries
- The credit simulator tool gives you an idea of how your credit score would change if you applied for a new credit card, closed your oldest credit card, or got a new auto loan
- You also get free, unlimited access to your credit report
When it comes to managing your money, safe and reliable is where it's at. Establishing a healthy relationship with your finances begins when you take control and practice habits that build wealth. Signing up just takes a few minutes. Set your intentions to build a solid financial foundation, it will only strengthen your relationship with your finances. And don't be afraid to get a little nerdy while you're at it.