A camera lens is a very special item. It’s absolutely necessary to capture great images.
You could use a pinhole and get great results. But you would have little to no control over the final image.Camera lenses, like it or not, are the most important part of your kit.
A camera lens denotes the aperture range you can use, the possible depth of field and the focusing distance. A camera can’t focus without a lens or capture any image at all.You can, however, capture images without a camera body if you were so inclined.
I know camera bodies are important. They allow other settings such as ISO and shutter speed. They influence the quality of the image through resolution. But they aren’t as important as lenses.
The first digital camera I ever owned was a Canon EOS 400D (Rebel XTi / Kiss X). The lens I had was not very special. It was the actual kit lens that came with the camera. This was 13 years ago.
I then picked up a Canon 7D just over 8 years ago, and have used a Canon 5D Mark III ever since.
The lenses and camera bodies were different, but there was no way I could tell which camera I used for any given image. Especially not just by looking at them.
I could tell you which lens I used though, based on crop factor, focus and depth of field.