May 9, 2011

The Importance of Subject Matter

© zoriah/

I have been following Zoriah Miller for a while now.  He is a war photographer and a big time photojournalist, published by a tall stack of magazines and newspapers.  His work is second to none and truly inspiring.

Zoriah has been concentrating on documentaries about humanitarian aid in developing countries.  He recently blogged about his experience in Africa, working with a $70 point and shoot purchased on Craigslist in replacement of his professional gear.

People get caught up in having the latest and greatest equipment-- believing better gear = better pictures.  Tons of time is spent writing and reading reviews of various bodies and lenses.  Comparing sharpness, contrast, autofocus speed, the works.  The fact of the matter is images are made by the photographer not the camera.

Understanding composition and subject matter is important, not the latest and greatest body.

Read Zoriah's blog:
Part I
Part II


  1. This is so true. I had a figure drawing professor once do a drawing using a snickers bar to demonstrate that point. It's not always about the tools it's about knowledge and understanding of the fundamentals of art. A great artist can use anything to create.

  2. Ha! A Snickers bar! That's ridiculous.