Overwhelmed by new DSLR – 5 surprising ways Instruction Manual can help you

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When I bought my Canon 700D some 2 years back first 20 days were terrible. I was so badly overwhelmed by this Complicated Machine. I used to stare at its box while thinking why did I actually buy this expensive camera ? If not I would hold it in my hands wondering will I ever be able to learn operating it? But Camera Instruction Manual helped me in overcoming my fear an getting better at Photography.

Above said was my daily routine for first 20 days after which finally my mom had to intervene “if you have spent the money then why not utilize it and practice rather than triggering your Migraine” (yes all that overthinking lead to severe migraine).

And that’s when I decided I should at least try to learn things as much as I can (no matter how small it is). So started internet based research, read so many blog post about Aperture, Shutter Speed, ISO, White Balance, Histogram, Metering Mode etc. But no matter what I read at the end of the day I end up confused as I dint know how to execute all that abundance of information.

Reason.. despite knowing all the basics of Photography before buying the DSLR it was still difficult to do hands on with sophisticated new camera. And every-time I tried to practice I used to get lost among so many dials – buttons of it. It was really getting frustrating by each passing day as “I can’t even learn how to use my camera”  And that frustration kept on going for 2 months.

One lucky day I found a blog post explaining Camera Instruction Manual should be the first go to guide for everyone with a newly bought DSLR. I wasn’t impressed knowing I am not at all a Book Person and imagined reading a camera guide to be an utterly  boring task still I gave it a try.

It was indeed boring at start as it explained some simplest things as how to put battery inside camera, what all dials it has, where they are placed and how to use them etc. But more I started reading more it amazed me with all the significant information in there. And today after almost 2 years while writing this post I am thankful to this Tiny Underestimated Guide which helped me during my initials days of suffering.

5 ways Camera Instruction Manual will enable you to master your DSLR

So here in this blog post I’ll be sharing 5 really surprising and simple ways as to how it can help you (just like it helped me). Also why every Photography enthusiast should never underestimate this handy guide.


  1. It guides you “where” before online blogs confuse you with “how”
  2. Everything at one place
  3. Basic, simple to understand language
  4. Old School way of learning (underlining, sticky notes etc.)
  5. Small and easy to carry so that you can read anywhere (even without internet)

Bonus Tip

In Detail

1. It guides you “what and where” before online blogs confuse you with “how to use”

That’s the biggest and most important thing about this tiny book.

Just like you navigate your path on GPS before actually going out for any outing

Same way this guide helps you knowing what all buttons/features camera body has and where they are placed and there functionality. It is critical for your learning practice as you should know what you have to use in order to execute something. And that’s possible only after knowing your camera in and out. That’s the prime objective of this guide. I had my Canon 700D and I am sure every DSLR Manual has the same aim to fulfill.

1     2Before you head towards the limitless internet for information make sure you know your Camera completely. Otherwise you would end up badly disappointed and also might drop the idea to learn any further.

Cause that feeling will kill your enthusiasm and excitement of mastering your DSLR one fine day (I have faced it and believe me it was the worst feeling to have at the initial stage) . As there would be drastic difference between what you expect from the outcome and the actual result due to not knowing your camera functions.

2. Everything at one place

Another important aspect of Camera Instruction Manual that came with your DSLR. It has EVERY single information about your camera’s physical controls and what all capabilities it has and how it works.


For example what all buttons it has, how those buttons can be used to take manual control of your camera and shortcuts for increasing-decreasing ISO or changing Aperture/shutter speed and much more. Or does it have GPS setting or not ? does it have built in wi-fi support or not etc.

The clear aim of this guide is to help a person having very new DSLR in understanding more about this machine, its physical controls and what all it can/cant do. So that they can learn using it without being overwhelmed by so many things to control on camera body. It also has Quick Reference Guide and Index at the end so that you can refer it whenever you want to but dont have time to go through the whole book to find it.


But please don’t get confuse saying it does not have detailed information about how to use DSLR cause that is not the aim of this guide. Though it does have some really basic information about it as well but still you can find more details on the internet as per your requirement.

3. Basic and simple to understand language

Another important aspect all the things explained here are in such simple English that even a laymen can understand. It does not use jargon or boost hard to understand words. Everything is so well written and explained that you hardly need dictionary (there are times when one need it cause you are handling a technical  machine actually)


I really loved this aspect of this guide as there were times when I used to read while commuting to office in bus where it was difficult to look at the words and its meaning on dictionary (or on internet).

4. Old School way of learning (underlining, sticky notes etc.)

That’s the best part of learning from this book cause it reminds me of good old school/college days when I used to mark/underline important words or paragraphs to refer later. Most of the time I used to study in my office (off course after completing my work and responding to all the pending mails) when I did not have my camera. So I used to mark all important terms, camera features etc so that I could refer them at home at night while practicing with camera.


You can also see so many sticky notes around it cause I still refer this guide after 2 years whenever I get stuck with anything specific and don’t want to spend time on internet.


Excuse me for bad shape of it, but that’s surely a proof of how much I read this book and with so much dedication.

5. Small and easy to carry so that you can read anywhere (even without internet)

Isn’t it a plus point that this small book has almost every information that you’d need to  master your camera. You can carry it almost anywhere with you, can read it whenever have some spare time. Especially when there is bad internet connection and your phone can’t help you with FB/Twitter/IG.


Why I said so cause I did it exactly like that 2 years back. It was always in my bag and used to read it in train or bus. And underlining, flipping through pages back and forth to look for references.

Bonus tip

It helps you in reducing frustration and disappointment while learning some difficult things later. As it would be a gradual process of first knowing your camera and then moving forward to more technical stuff. That’s my personal experience as when I tried practicing things per blogs and did’t get expected results I used to blame my camera and why its so complicated.

But after reading the guide it was a different experience as I got to know more about it and had realistic expectation from the results. So it was kind of new experience knowing my camera through this Camera Instruction Manual.


So now may be you will think just by reading the book in one single day or may be in a week you would master using camera but sorry to say it wont work like that. There is a Condition to this whole process known as Practice and Dedication towards learning.

Cause no matter how much you read this guide you still have to spend time with your camera to practice each and everything. For example to find what button guide just referred or what menu option it has to format the memory card or how to change aperture quickly while looking through view finder.

I did that exactly… remember I told you above how I used to study in office. Then after 10 hours of office while reaching home I would practice with my camera almost 3 hours daily (from 11pm to 2am). That was my daily routine till the day I could handle all the basic functions without fidgeting with the buttons.

And its rightly said

Practice makes a woman perfect


The take away lesson from this blog post is the following:

Before starting your internet based research of learning Photography with your new DSLR do give a chance to that humble Camera Instruction Manual. As this would hand hold you towards the new exciting journey of serious Photography learning without overwhelming you.

And even if your camera is not recently bought and you are still learning do give Camera Manual a try. And please be dedicated and practice as much as you can cause thats all is there to master your Camera.

Do you ever had this overwhelming feeling while using your newly bought DSLR.. if yes then how did you overcome it ? Do share your views below so that it can help me and others too.

You might be interested in my other tutorials:

How Bridge Camera can help you to be a better Photographer ?

How my DSLR works as a Machine – Lets Unfold the Mystery – Part 1

Understand Depth of Field in 3 simple steps.

Also you can find me on other side of web too  InstaGram | Facebook




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