I saw them in the tall grass. They stood in a small cluster with their heavy duty tripods, full-frame top-of-the-line cameras, and big honking lenses. None spoke a word -- at least not to the "lesser" photographers.
They were the camera snobs.
Having an expensive camera doesn't make you a snob, but if you aspire to be elite in your own mind, you must remember these tips.
It's about the gear, not the work. Only talk about the camera you have, not the work you want to create. At every opportunity, you should recite all the contents of your camera bag to anyone who will listen. If you can sprinkle the prices of your gear into the conversation, that is always helpful. Under no circumstances will you talk about your actual photos. It's only about the gear.
Whine about the ultra-technical limitations of at least six of your lenses. Naturally, you'll have much more than six lenses. Never mention when you use the lenses or why you might choose them to create different effects. It is far more important for us to know that you are well versed in all the engineering nuances of your glass.
Always begin every interaction with the assumption that if my camera is more expensive than yours, I must be a better photographer than you. After all, if you were half decent, you'd be upgrading every year, too.
"If that thing you are pointing also makes calls, it is NOT a camera," you say with a snotty, condescending laugh.
Complain incessantly about every errant pixel in every photo you see. Things like story, mood and impact are obviously not important if we can find a micro fraction of noise in the image. Gasp!
Avoid any learning opportunity. Never take classes. Ignore all blogs and podcasts. Who needs articles? You've been doing this forever. What can anyone really teach you?
At a glance, you should be able to spot less expensive cameras than yours. Once you see someone with a cheaper camera, under no circumstances must you make eye contact. Real photographers with the same camera body as yours should get the knowing nod.
It's helpful to memorize a few handy phrases from well established review sights like dpreview, while universally panning anything from Ken Rockwell.
If you haven't mastered all the elements of camera snobbery, don't dismay. It takes some photographers years to ascend to the upper echelons of snob status.
For the others, you have an alternative. Create art wherever you are, with the camera you have. Get better. Get creative. Have fun. The world has enough camera snobs.