I was having a discussion a few weeks ago with some folks I met who are trying to get into photography. One of the newer people was talking about upgrading his camera and another person piped in to say that it was all about the glass (lenses). There is a going bias in photography at the moment, that lenses matter more than the camera. So, naturally, the person who had corrected the newer photographer was shocked when I added that neither of them were right, in my experience.
My own view on the subject is that there are three pillars to great photography, assuming everyone already understands that skill is a given. The first pillar, is the camera body. There is no legitimate argument that the censor, processor, and bells/whistles on a camera body makes no difference in image quality. You can check any of the camera review sites to see side by side images with the same lens and different bodies.
The second pillar, is the camera lens. Just as no one can legitimately claim the camera body has little impact on image quality, no one can make that claim with regards to lenses either. Again, I encourage everyone to visit the major review sites and see the images side by side.
Now, the third pillar is one many new photographers overlook. Light. Whether the light is coming from the sun, speed-lights, or off-camera strobes; we live and die by the quality of our light. So, when considering your next investment in camera gear, don't forget about light. Of-camera strobes are coming down in price and the quality keeps going up. They even come fully battery operated now, so you can take them on location too.
Each pillar is equally important.