We can all agree that the last year has been rough. And with so much of our time spent online and under pressure, many of us have looked for inspiration through creative classes.
With the spring of 2021 ushering in more optimistic days ahead, we’ve pulled together this list of the best Skillshare classes to take right now. Whether you’d like to take your illustration and animation skills to the next level, focus on self-care, document this strange phase of life intentionally, or become the next TikTok sensation, we’ve got you covered.
Ready to explore? Get the details of our 11 best classes on Skillshare this year.
Photography, Video, & Animation
1. Portrait Photography: Shoot and Edit Instagram-Worthy Shots by Jessica Kobeissi
If you’re ready to become a professional photographer—or if you just want a cool new headshot for Insta or LinkedIn—schedule in some time to learn from portrait and fashion photographer Jessica Kobeissi. The YouTube star will show you how to prepare for a shoot, edit your photos, and work with models.
2. Mastering TikTok: Stop Scrolling and Post Your 1st TikTok by Taylor Loren
Be honest: You know you live for the viral dances and challenges you see on TikTok. In her fun and accessible class, Taylor Loren breaks down how to make the best TikTok videos, covering everything from shooting to editing to optimizing your videos. Even if you’re not familiar with the platform, you’ll be able to follow along and start sharing your own videos in no time.
3. Easy Animation: Make Fun, Cute GIFs for Your Instagram by Scott Martin
Learn the basics of transforming your sketches and illustrations into animations with Canadian freelance illustrator Scott Martin. The genius behind the alias Burnt Toast—who works with brands like Google and Red Bull—will walk you through developing animations and sharing them. He’ll even dish out the secrets behind which animations are optimal for Instagram’s algorithm.
4. Productivity for Creatives: Build a System that Brings Out Your Best by Thomas Frank
If you’ve set big goals for 2021, you’re in luck. YouTuber and productivity expert Thomas Frank will show you how to achieve them using simple and measurable productivity tactics. In his class, Frank walks you through how to transform your physical and digital environments into something that works for you, flex inspiration as a muscle, and improve your workflow by getting organized.
5. Confidence for Creatives: 5 Exercises to Grow Your Confidence and Self Care by Eugena Washington
Tap into your fullest potential (without burning out or setting unreasonable goals) with model and entrepreneur Eugena Washington. As someone in the public eye, Washington has curated a vision for finding her inner beauty, voice, and purpose—and she’ll help you find yours, too. She teaches you how to intentionally develop confidence though actionable exercises like writing a letter to yourself, recording your brilliance, and drawing a “map of miracles.”
Art, Illustration, & Graphic Design
6. Cultivating Color: Vary Palettes in Original Art and Grow Your Portfolio by Cat Coquillette
Designer and illustrator Cat Coquillette shares how she funnels her creative vision into sellable art by developing multiple color palettes for each illustration. The designer knows what she’s talking about—Coquillette has had her designs featured by brands like Target, Barnes and Noble, Nordstrom, and more. This is the perfect class for any illustrator looking to develop their artistic style into a sustainable, lucrative business.
Want to use hand lettering to infuse your illustrations with meaning? In one of our best drawing classes on Skillshare, lettering artist and illustrator Gia Graham will guide you through the principles of hand lettering, including perfecting your layout and mastering lettering techniques that will help you level up.
8. The Style Class: Work Out Your Illustration Style in a Daily Project by Tom Froese
Award-winning illustrator Tom Froese will force you out of your comfort zone and help you build a cohesive and authentic illustration style that is all your own. His class is a deep dive into 26 illustration projects meant to explore your design style by making you confront your deeper issues with your style and how that relates to your identity.
As he puts it: “Finding an illustration style is not about finding a static style, stopping growth on purpose so our style can remain consistent. It’s about always creating, always working, always seeking the joy in that, and then taking some time along the way to find out which ways work the best for us, and then how to do that more on purpose.”
9. Sketchbook Illustration: Draw a Personal, Colorful Travel Map by Mike Lowery
Embark on an adventure without leaving your home with illustrator Mike Lowery, who teaches what is considered one of the best drawing classes on Skillshare. Draw fanciful fantasy maps or whimsical dream destinations using Lowery’s class as a step-by-step guide or launching point to build a place with personality.
10. Revolutionary Self-Care: Embrace, Nurture, and Grow Your Authentic Self by Chidera Eggerue
Self-care, self-respect, and self-acceptance aren’t just ideals to aspire to—they’re skills you can work on and develop. In author and activist Chidera Eggerue’s class, you’ll learn how to invest in yourself and your future by using daily affirmations, having hard conversations with loved ones, and learning when to ask for help.
11. Document Your Life: 4 Methods to Live More Intentionally by Nathaniel Drew
If you want to literally change your life this year, start by capturing your favorite moments with intention. Teacher Nathaniel Drew says that documenting your life intentionally can help you treasure memories. While you can snap a million meaningless photos on your phone, documenting is about placing your focus on what’s most important.
“In capturing intentionally the important moments, you can hold on to the essence of that memory and add depth and reflection to that,” Drew says.
Want even more recommendations for top classes? Check out our list of the best classes on Skillshare in 2020.
Live—and Learn—With Intention
Document Your Life: 4 Methods to Live More Intentionally