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Well, it’s kind of hard to point you in a good direction since you don’t want to spend money and don’t have much time.  I can understand, what you are saying, but yes it can be very confusing and a lot to take  in a short period of time.

The best thing I would suggest is to learn your camera and it’s features to the point that you know where pretty much everything is without having to look.  I don’t have one of those, but just knowing how to navigate through the menus and selecting various options and settings is key.  You don’t need to know every aspect of every feature, most people don’t use all the features of all devices anyway.

Learn a new technique or trick or 2 each week until you got the full hang of it.  Keep shooting and trying new things.

In your case and I have said it all the time, YouTube can be a treasure trove of information, but don’t put all your stock in just one video.

The fundamentals have not changed much since the days of film, every photo is based on 3 things, ISO, aperture and shutter speed.  To take a photo, your shot will be different based on what these 3 settings are in relation to each other.  Change 1 and it affects the other 2, slightly more with every step.  If anything, learn these 1st, since they do not change.

Automatic mode is nice for on-the-go quick snapshots, but the camera has no idea what you are trying to do and how you want the photo to turn out.  In Automatic mode, the camera is trying to achieve the best photo possible based on the lighting conditions not what you intend for the photo to look like.

Try the different modes of your camera first. like Av, Tv and P.  When you see a shot that you like that turns out nice, look at the settings and see if you can duplicate those setting on your own in M mode (M stands for Manual).  Remember, if you see a photo that you like and try to duplicate it, you will have to adjust at least 1 of the 3 settings to compensate for any lighting differences.

If you have scene modes like beach, winter, night, action and such, give those a try and see what the settings are after taking the shot.  They will vary slightly from shot to shot, so keep that in mind.

In time it will come to you, but do yourself and your family a favor and take it in stride.  Your head may explode if you try to digest too much information at one time.


Good  Luck!!