Money Can't Buy You Art, Either.

"Does that camera take good pictures?" (From my second cousin at a family gathering, gesturing to my Canon DSLR.)

"I don't need to hire a professional photographer for my wedding, my cousin has a good camera." (Said by a woman on a message board I'm on.)

"Ugh! I cringe every time I see you with a disposable camera!" (Said by a guy with thousands of dollars worth of camera gear he obviously wasn't using to its full potential to his friend who was unwrapping a Kodak Funsaver).

"There's nothing interesting to shoot in Connecticut." (Said to me, before I showed him the light, by the guy with the above Funsaver.)

People, people, people. *Soapbox* Good photography doesn't come from your camera. It comes from your eyes, and your brain and your heart. Seriously! Asking if a camera takes good pictures is like asking if a typewriter makes good stories, or if a guitar plays beautiful music. Unfortunately I haven't figured out how to convey this sentiment to people well without coming across as an ass.

There are tons of great examples to illustrate this. Elizabeth Soule is shooting her uber-popular "Little Zoo" collection (and other images) using a Polaroid instant camera. Hundreds of brilliant and amazing photos are made using a Holga, which has two aperture settings ("cloudy" and "sunny"), one shutter speed (1/100th of a second. [Ish!]) and four focal points ("portrait" to "landscape")(it's more fun to call them, "one person", "three people", "group of people" and "mountains").

I'm hardly going to break ground with a "What is Art?" discussion, but I know that art is NOT thousands of dollars worth of camera and lighting and lenses in the hands of a guy who thinks he should be taken seriously as a photographer because he has a Mark III. (Which? Drool.)

People of the world, learn to use whatever camera you have, however shitty you might think it is, and read a few basic photo books. You'll be surprised at the great stuff you can make with a cheap-o camera.