Read the Manual? HOW??

Ok, we've all had that magic moment when we pull our fresh lovely new-camera-smell products out of their plastic baggies, set them all on the table before us, and then reach for the manual. Horrors... It's microscopic print, non-native language (I really don't think engineers or technical writers speak any language but tech-eese), lack of illustrations and constant references to other random pages in the manual make it almost impossible to learn how to use your new toy. So, if you're like me, the manual mostly doesn't get referred to until you're desperate and almost in tears. Take heart! There are options! Most people don't realize that Amazon.com carries a plethora of really great aftermarket manuals that are far more easily understood than the one that came with your camera. Just go to Amazon and type in what type of camera you have, and you should be able to easily find a book for it or something similar. There are manuals for camera phones, even! Check the reviews at the bottom of the page, and from that you should be able to make a choice of which you want to buy. I've also found camera manuals at Half-Price Books for older cameras and software, or you can ask at your local book store and they can get you what you need. Don't feel bad if you forget things and have to refer back to your manuals in the future, even some pro photographers do that, and carry various laminated 'cheat sheets' on lighting as well. You will never regret buying an aftermarket manual, they're worth their weight in gold. Cameras are complex tools, and even the simplest point and shoot camera now has capabilities that will impress you if you take the time to play with them. Honestly, that's the main thing that you need to do: Play. Take a LOT of pictures. Practice. Then you won't suffer missing all those magic moments at holidays or preschool graduations or what-have-you because you didn't know how your #$%#% camera/camcorder works. Remember: This is supposed to be fun! 😉