Equipment Debate

March 15, 2008

One of my students just brought my attention to an online debate about the relative importance of gear in photography.  You can catch the jist of the debate here.  My Response:

 First, let me establish that I have an opinion on just about everything… I’m just built that way. Some of my opinions are highly valid, based on a mix of hard won knowledge and experience.  Some are completely worthless, based on conjecture and thin air.  But I hold them all dearly, like treasured children.  That’s the basic problem with opinions!  Now, to the debate… Of course both writers are completely correct.  In any form of endeavor there are tools that are better than others, or at least better suited to one particular aspect of that endeavor.  And a better tool will make a fine artisan better.  However, a fine tool will do nothing to improve the work of an untalented person, or even that of one who is talented but doesn’t practice to refine that talent.  The surest way to improve your photography is to take more photographs and look at more photographs.  The camera, lens, software, secret sauce, whatever… Is the last step in the progression.  Any reasonable camera is more than capable of taking superlative pictures… The same cannot be said of the photographer.  Just remember that the most important piece of equipment occupies the space six inches behind your eyes, not in front of them.  That’s my opinion!   



  1. I love the cartoon on that site.. “What piano should I buy if I want to play like Mozart!”

  2. This reads like an introduction to a book in progress. Regardless, it is clearly written by someone of experience and wisdom who summarizes what years of education can do for an aspiring photographer . . . . if you’re open to it.
    Thanks for “Rob’s Insight”.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: