I like people to experiment and try new things with their photography. The only way you're going to learn what works and what doesn't is to try it and see. In this case Andy Taylor of Sheffield, UK, has got a bit adventurous with his Fujifilm FinePix F30 compact camera with excellent results, showing that you don't need to have a DSLR to make great photos.
There's no rule that says that portraits have to be of people. I just had to include this photo, even though I know next to nothing about it. It was sent in by Ciufudean Alin of Blaj, which I believe is in Romania. The exposure and focus aren't quite perfect, but it just captures the old dog's resigned but peaceful expression beautifully.
Here's a simple candid portrait from regular entrant and previous first-prize winner Robert Heverly of Norfolk, UK. It was shot hand-held on his Nikon D50 with a manual-focus 50mm f/1.8 lens and 200 ISO, using available light. Before you think Robert's been stalking pretty girls in bars, the girl is a professional model waiting between photo-shoots.