Take one of your pictures and look at it. Ask yourself the question, what made the picture.
There is the camera that captured the photo. Maybe it was a smart phone camera or a camera body with a lens or a small point and shoot camera. And there is the subject of your photo, your family, friends, a landscape, animals, wildlife, people on a street or a lovely beach. All these components are easy to identify. You can see them and touch them.
Yet there is more. The main component is you. Not only that you operate the camera, it is you who sees the composition, decides on the subject, creates compositions, connects with the light, senses an opportunity, creates opportunities and eventually captures moments that last forever.
Where you conscious about your role as main component of your photography?
Lets take it even further with an example of wildlife photography. You are on photographic safari, it is hot, the sun is burning on your head, you are following a leopard through Kruger Park, the game vehicle is going off road, you got to duck from branches, flies are circling your head and then you see the leopard, you got to focus, choose the right settings, the right angle, just the moment that the light is on it’s face and then press the shutter at the right moment.
It all depends on you and your ability to cope with any circumstances and to stay focused on what you do. Be nice for yourself, even nicer than you are for you camera equipment. You are the main component of your photography.