Don't know if this is already a known thing/wiki/previously asked here, but basically:
How important is a good camera for actually making strides in photography/doing well? I've done some photography now as an amateur and even have an Instagram which is both like a portfolio and a public display of my means. I do wonder though: Am I really limited by using a low-quality camera much?
It's often said that a good photographer supposedly, "Can make any photo good with any camera."
Is this a truth, or are we really limited by the means of our cameras in taking pro-quality photos or good photography in general? I can't imagine some cheap smartphone camera having anywhere near the same means as a multi-hundred or multi-thousand dollar camera with excellent lens, MPs, and etc.
I mean, if cameras didn't matter, every great photographer would use just any camera and there'd be no market for dedicated cameras, correct? I'm inclined to think that cameras themselves can make a big difference aside from one's photography skills and knowledge in general, given these variations.
The general idea of photography may rest with the fact that a good photographer can make even a poor camera work its best -- but can one really expect to get serious if they're limited to just a, say, cheap smartphone camera as a means of advancing in photography and creating stunning photos?
Or is it simply a fact that like a good photographer can make a poor camera work its best, a poor photographer could also use an extremely good camera to make their inexperience a little hidden? Both these things are necessary, but to what extent I don't know, i.e., camera itself vs. skills overall.
Think also how smartphone manufacturers, for example, and camera manufacturers themselves, are always trying to raise the bar on the "next best" camera. If we were to only assume that photography as a skill alone is way more important than the camera, then why are people striving to make better cameras than better photographers? I know how this might make sense from a marketing standpoint, but when it comes to the camera vs. skill argument, you do wonder -- if so much can be gotten out of so little -- then why are people vouching for better cameras always (even pros themselves across a wide spectrum of areas)? I know skills are crucial, but we need to be realistic of all factors.
And since some people asked, "Define good photography..."
I define "good photography" as both the skill and the final output. Since we can argue that the final output is also limited by the camera too, then we can say that "good photography" is of course kind of vague in this sense. I prefer to simplify it by likening the ideal to something you'd see in a magazine/print ad/etc., which are often done with professional quality, expensive-ish cameras, as opposed to, say, very cheap smartphone cameras. You absolutely can take good photos with bad cameras, but how good as compared to good photos with good cameras? That's more of the main point I was going for.