So, I'll tell you what my circumstancse are. I want to take professional shots of the wilderness, including myself and others dressed in costumes that will end up in my music album cd (whatever you call it). Anyways, I plan on taking hundreds of shots of different mountain hikes in the next month, which would cancel out hiring someone with an expensive camera to do the work since I can't see him hiking around for hours upon end when he's charging hourly. Now first off: I am really interested in getting into photography. Learning how to take proffesional shots that I see get 5 stars on Flickr or getting the quality of bands in music magazines. Of course I can see this taking time to master. But than I'm confused where I start. I've been seeing that there is family cameras and then there is DSLR which are what professionals use. My first question than is, If I am to get professional looking band photographs and landscapes for an album/magazines/promotion, what camera would be for me? Are the DSLR just so much better in quality than the 200 dollar family cameras? Secondly, which kind of DSLR? I've been looking at the Canon D40 since it seems to be very high range but still only comes to 700 canadian if I buy it used; But than it only has 10.1 megapixels compared to others having 15 megapixels, is that bad? Which camera should I be looking for? I probably have a limit of about 600 dollars I can spend. * I have to note to everyone as well: the photos for this music album will be photoshop'd heavily to include mist, snow.. I'm even planning on changing the landscapes, as in adding trees from other photos to make synthetic pictures (sorry if that is confusing), so perhaps photoshop is more important than the actual camera? To give you an idea of the photography I enjoy here's an example of a band picture I absolutely love. It's not in precise detail but it has an older ambience to it: http://www.burzum.org/img/gallery02/big/photo01.jpg Here's a landscape I enjoy: http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2223/2300536308_98bb431467_o.jpg Thanks for reading that all!