I purchased the new camera, a Nikon D800 along with the 80-400mm lens in December 2013. For various reason the camera was hardly used until July 2014 when we went up North on a brief trip. My old camera a Nikon D40 had served me extremely well taking thousands of photos over many years. I read up quite a bit, but when it comes to learning a camera the best way for me is to just pick it up and use it. I try different things, see what works, see if I can replicate it and see if I can predict the outcome. To get a really good understanding of how the different camera settings affect the image, I decided to only use the camera in full manual mode until I was satisfied I actually knew what was going on. My photos have got better and the new camera has now been well used. Funny thing I am still using it in full manual mode, must be OCD or just a control freak! One image from the July trip stuck in my mind. It was of a Brown Falcon taking off from a dead tree. I had stalked the bird for about half an hour creeping closer and closer until he took off. In the series of shots this was the best one. I loved how the movement was absolutely frozen. It triggered off an obsession with birds in flight and inspired me to persevere with figuring out the camera!!