What makes a photographer?.. http://www.thephotoforum.com/forum/showthread.php?t=95092 Ok so it's argued by some that Photographers are the people that push the button or the people that work the hardest, the people that make the most money and so on... So let's then consider the photograph, the result of the button pusher. A kiss in Paris, a plate of food, the Grand Canyon, a girl on the catwalk, can anyone make an outstanding shot from those subjects? If we could predict where lightening was going to strike could we all setup for a perfect shot? And I mean that super worldwide acclaim for its class. Even after years of practise can you be enlightened enough or practised enough to be considered a world class photographer? Let me put it in another art form. I can teach anyone with fingers how to play guitar. The student can master every lick and style of playing but will that guarantee I will create a musician? Will he play a composition that well all want to listen to, or at least appreciate and respect for its brilliance? Louis Walsh sells millions of CDs with musicians like Westlife and Boyzone. Personally I hate it but people like it so people buy it, but is that good music? Technically correct in mix and composition and subject matter for the amorous 12 year old but will it be respected in the history of music? So what happened with SilverPenguin on TBF... http://www.thephotoforum.com/forum/showthread.php?t=81490 He won a BBC contest, that to me is an awesome achievement but could anyone have done it? 1st shot I see a clear shot of a bird, 2nd shot another bird, 3rd a sea lion or something like that, 4th another bird, 5th Crikey mate its life and joy and spring and happiness captured with a camera. So now were getting into the thick of things, was Richard born with that natural talent that makes him a success or was it hard work, perseverance and patience that paid off thereby meaning that any hard working person could have pushed the button? Can I simply learn the functions of the camera, depth of field/ shutter speed, light and shadows etc and put myself continuously in enough situations to be there finally to capture the moment when somebody zaps a lamb with a stun gun? [Joking of course Richard] Or must I have natural ability? I feel like I get too many shots that lack vaa vaa voom! So what do I need to do to make them sparkle? I'll bet nobody said "Hey that's really crap quality video! And the guy totally screwed up on the rule of 3rds there! And he's got no natural talent." when they looked at the 911 attack videos but everyone's jaw dropped open, so in that case it's not the camera or the photographer but the content that makes people look again and again. So if you know where lightening is going to strike, where that car accident will happen, where that spring lamb is going to jump are you guaranteed to have a contest winning shot? Ray.