By shooting various objects with various settings you'll understand your camera better. You'll understand what it can and can't do. You'll understand what you want it to do. This will help you understand what kind of photographer you are and help to make a decision on what camera to buy.
$5,000 worth of camera gear doesn't automatically make you a better photographer. It does automatically make you a poorer one.
One of my favorite local bands happened to be playing at a downtown event today. I didn't have all my camera gear with me but I always carry my P&S, a Canon A720. With that I was able to make some nice pictures and shoot about 30 seconds worth of video.
|Downtown After 5 6-19-09|