To be blunt IMO "artistically" that's nonsense, great photos can be made in any format. Format only becomes important when the paper (output size) is defined before the shoot or the subject itself defines it and even then it is only a marginal concern.
I did an employee-of-the-month shoot this week, 3 separate subjects, oilfield mechanics in their normal work attire and baseball caps and as I walked in to do the shoot the client specified 12x24 paper vertical and wanted the background behind the receptionist's desk (which could not be moved) with the company logo which were all under fluorescent office lights, and as he's walking away says "make them look good". The format of the camera was completely irrelevant, as it should be.
You can also see the format vs subject definition play out in many movies quite starkly. The movie screen is a fixed entity, you can't tilt a theater 90 clockwise on demand and because of that dutching/tilting the camera is reserved for special effects. Cinematographers can still focus our attention on a vertical or square portrait within that fixed horizontal frame. They use lighting, DOF, somebody's head in the way, color, focal length, and other tools to creatively "crop" our attention down to the subject.
The camera in your hand is just a tool, like a screwdriver or a paint brush, it is just a means to an end; the camera does not define the output or focus the viewers attention, we as photographers and printers do.
With regard to the malfunctioning equipment, that's a real problem. Get one camera really fixed and then go shooting. If it helps cut some masks in various formats to fit say your Hasselblad's viewfinder so you can see/experiment with various crops while you are out shooting.