Feeling artful has its price

Today’s photo: Alice appreciates an artful installation.

Alice appreciates an artful installation, 1 of 3.

Today’s Alice extras:

Alice appreciates an artful installation, 3 of 3.

Alice appreciates an artful installation, 2 of 3.

Today’s lesson: The camera is not what makes the photo, but then again it is.

If you get into photography at all, you’ll be barraged with advice from people who tell you on the one hand that you really need a whole bunch of expensive gear and on the other hand that the expensive cameras and lenses don’t really matter because it’s the skill of the photographer that makes the photo and not the quality of the camera. This is all true. The camera doesn’t matter nearly as much as the photographer, but then again the camera does matter. If it didn’t, National Geographic would sent photographers out with only phone cameras instead of with tens of thousands of dollars worth of equipment.

The point we can take from this I think is that you don’t need expensive gear to learn the skills for taking great pictures. If you own a camera of any sort, you can learn techniques that will make you a better photographer. Also, if you don’t have the skills, the better camera will do you no good.

Here’s my example for the “camera doesn’t matter” argument.

Cat about town

This orange tabby was shot with a cheap point-and-shoot camera and uploaded through my phone. The other shots I took today were taken with a Canon 5D Mark iii, which costs more than the price of ten of those point-and-shoots. Yet the point-and-shoot cat is my favorite photo of the day.

I have taken shots with the 5D Mark iii that I could not have taken with a point-and-shoot, and it will certainly do things that no other camera I’ve ever owned will, but it won’t do those things on its own. I’m still better off investing in better skills than in more expensive gear.

Photography is one of those hobbies that comes with a never-ending price tag. There is always another lens or another gadget or another camera that you think you need to move up to the next level. I won’t be doing any moving up any time soon, so I’m just going to have to implore myself and others to consider the orange tabby. The shot is mine for the taking regardless of the camera in my hand as long as I make the most of my opportunities.

The camera does and doesn’t matter, but the photo is always dependent on composition and lighting. Get those two things right, and maybe you’ll be worth the price of the next great camera you think you have to have. Get those two things right, and you won’t even need the next great camera.

One thought on “Feeling artful has its price”

  1. 1. I really like the art that Alice found.

    2. The photo of the cat is also very special.

    3. The most important part of photography that I know of is that one needs to have the camera along. Sometimes, OK, most of the time for me, it’s a problem having the larger more expensive camera along. The new phone camera is always in my pocket and gets photos that I would never get with the larger camera because the larger camera spends much more time at home.

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