Everyone has a budget, especially with hobbies... well, sometimes. So I found this blog article on how to do photography for cheap.
Aside from the picture of the home-made tripod making me laugh, it brought up some interesting points. The blogger mostly recommends using film camera, so you'll learn from your mistakes quicker, thanks for film development costs.
Unfortunately, I'll have to disagree there. True, film costs more, so you'll be careful with your frames to not waste them, but chemical and film costs can add up. When I did film photography back in high school, those $3 rolls of films (or was it $4?) per assignment quickly added up. Also, it was one roll per assignment, so we didn't have much of a second chance at learning from our mistakes for next time. Plus, there's a lot of techniques you can do when making prints that you can get by with having okay quality shots. That's just me.
On the other hand, natural lighting and shooting at free locations is true, especially when starting out. Not because it's cheap, but it's really good practice. Different lighting lets you practice with aperture, shutter speed, film speed, etc. And locations will help with image composition. But in the end, it's practice that improves one's skill. :)