It was spring 2012, the year the mayan calendar ended. I had just bought my very own first camera. My budget was around 150$, so i went for the best i could at the price.
The camera i chose was a Fujifilm S4000. I really enjoyed that camera, the thing i remember i loved the most about it, was it's big optical zoom, around 30x, and i really enjoyed the possibility of not being necessary for me to move around, in order to get a new frame.
Being an amateur as i was, i didn't know very much then about composition, lighting, white balance and many other aspects a photographer should have in mind when he's preparing to take a shot.
I'll be completely honest with you, at first i used the auto function the camera had most of the time, and it took me a considerable amount of time to go from auto to manual.
I recommend all of the new photographers out there, to take advantage of the auto function, and allow the camera to find the most suitable settings for your scene.
Don't concern yourselves with having to set the camera just now, you'll have plenty of time to worry about that later. I sometimes use the auto function to see what the camera thinks about a setting, just to get a second opinion.
I wish i could relive those first days of discovering photography. I had an incredible urge to create when i first discovered this passion, and i still have it, but not at those first levels. It was so, i believe, because i knew nothing about it, that i was not afraid to experiment, to indulge myself, to break "the rules" i didn't know even existed. Now that i know more about the matter at hand, i sometimes happen to overthink a situation and miss the subject/frame i'm looking for.
Some great photographies, i can dare to say, can be made without necessarily knowing all of the camera settings.
The main focus of a photographer should be the subject. Stop thinking if you set the white balance right, leave that to the camera if you don't know, shoot raw, and get the shot!
The photograph i posted at the beginning of my article was made with zero knowledge about anything. I know it may not be much for professionals out there, but for me it's one of the best i've ever made and i keep it as a reminder that i don't need to know every technical aspect to make good art.
I hope you enjoyed reading this. Have a good one!