So... in Janurary 2011, I bought a DLSR, a Canon Rebel T2i. I was frustrated with the picture quality of my pocket camera, even though my trusty little Panasonic Lumix DHS-FH20 had served me well. The only problem, I had no idea how to work this new thing. I took a photography class back in college, but I had forgotton everything: f-stops, shutter speed, ISO. For the next couple of months, I fiddled with the new camera, figured out how it worked. Then I had to remember how to actually take pictures. After all, its not the camera, its the person. But I was at least on my way.
Toward the end of January, I bought a Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 prime lens - the nifty fifty. I had no idea how to use this new lens, but it was sharper than my EF-S 18-55 kit lens, by far. I hadn't discovered RAW and I didn't know anything about post-processing (disclaimer: some of the photos have been processed in Lightroom some years later, to the extent that you can process a jpg...)