So Buying THIS Camera Makes Me a Photographer?
Pro Tip: The hardware matters less. You matter more.
Okay, I’m (kind of) sorry for the somewhat condescending title, but seriously, does the first thing that comes to mind after a good meal is: “I wonder what stove these eggs were cooked on?” No, you appreciate the chef and maybe tip the waiter.
To put it simply: respect the craft!
The most important aspect of photography (according to… me) is to focus on the composition, not the opposition (and what you see them doing/using). Your composition, or, the particular framing and settings of the shot you’re wanting to get, has far more significance in the outcome of your end result over what camera and lens you have, or would like to have.
The reason being is that, art is a highly subjective and personal medium; no one can recreate your idea, perception and talent from a formula. If that was the case, every college graduate wouldn’t be struggling with the prospect of working at Bed, Bath and Beyond until they get enough “work experience” for a job they just “learned” (not knocking that whole scenario, BTW).
PASSION IS GREATER THAN TALENT
What I am saying is that tools, education and even experience are nothing without passion. Passion, that burning desire fueled by a significant life-changing purpose, is what breeds genius.
There’s a story that Kobe Bryant once missed a free throw in a game because a lady in the audience flashed him. He was so distraught, he had a basketball goal installed in a local strip club so he’d never miss a free throw due to a pair of breasts ever again. This alone makes Kobe better than Jordan, all other GOAT arguments are invalid.
But the mentality that makes a person go to those depths to perfect a craft stems not from formula or toolset, but an unquenchable desire to elevate.
Why do you want the best gear? Because you want the best possible shot, right? Well, here’s some advice: don’t learn how to be a photographer, learn what you love about photography. What kind of photography do you want to pursue (landscapes, sports, portraits, wildlife)? What emotions do you want to portray? Do you want to do more sunrise and sunsets, or night and astrophotography?
These answers come from discovering yourself through shooting, making mistakes, educating yourself on those mistakes, implementing the new knowledge and then repeating the cycle. You’ll start to realize what you need and don’t need in the midst of this process.
So yes, to contradict myself, education, tools and experience are all very necessary. BUT, only in context of being patient with you as your only competition and in discovering the totality of your passion, and allowing that to guide your decisions.
Life has a way of taking care of itself when it’s allowed to be free and less methodical. You breath naturally, without caring for the intricate mental and physical processes involved in that non-stop, life-critical process. But, try and focus on the mechanics of contracting and relaxing your lung muscles and the even more complex process of figuring out how to breath when you’re asleep and you’ll kill an easy, automatic process... along with yourself.
Trust the process and the process will produce the results.