I was talking with a friend who makes short films for YouTube. He had a recent windfall and is going to get a Canon 5D camera about a year and a half sooner than he originally planned. Which is great news since it’s much better than what he’s shooting with now and I’m sure it will make a difference in the final product. I went on to agree that my $25 shotgun mic from China probably wouldn’t be quite as good as a $700 mic from Not-China.
With most things, it makes a difference what tools we have to work with. You can be the best photographer in the world, but if all you have is a disposable film camera, your work just won’t be the same as someone shooting with a DSLR. I think that writing (and perhaps traditional artwork) is one of few fields where the tools you use don’t matter as much. For example, it makes very little difference if I type this in Pages, Word, or the tumblr box itself. Actually, the low startup cost is one of the reasons I’m focusing more on writing for now.
However, if words are weapons, then surely they are the tools as well. Recently, I find myself noticing good words to use, and different sentence structure as I read. I’m thinking about getting these books to hopefully learn a bit more and develop into a more capable wordsmith. It seems that with anything, you have to practice and become proficient before worrying about specific equipment. I haven’t done any filmmaking before, so it wouldn’t make sense for me to worry about whether to go for tungsten lighting or fluorescent. Similarly, I need to keep practicing my writing before I try to figure out a particular style or genre. One step at a time.