I would start out by using your camera in AV or TV mode.
1. AV Mode – Aperture Priority
Turn the dial on the top of your camera to AV. This means that you will be setting the Aperture, and then the camera will automatically adjust the shutter speed to make sure you have a correct exposure. That means the pictures is not too bright and not too dark. Look at the second picture.. Do you see where it says -2…-1…0…1…2 ? That’s your exposure. In AV mode, the little arrow is probably covering up the 0 which means you have a correct exposure. And in AV mode, it won’t change. It will always stay on the 0 unless you specifically tell it to move to a higher or lower number. In most cases, if the arrow is on a higher number, the picture will be over exposed (too bright) and if it is on a lower number it will be under exposed (too dark). So for right now, we’ll just let it stay on 0.
Let’s talk a little bit about Aperture. Look at the second picture. See where it says 5.6? That means the aperture is at 5.6 or f/5.6. The lower the aperture number, the wider your lens is open and the more light it lets in, meaning, the brighter the picture. This also means a shallower depth of field. You know, you’ve seen those pictures where one thing is in focus and everything around is has that nice blur? That’s a very shallow depth of field. That means the aperture was set very low, like maybe at f/2.8. When you see the pictures with a lot of people in them and a lot of stuff in the background, and everything is in focus, those pictures probably used a higher aperture, like f/11 or f/16 or even f/22. That also means that not as much light will be let into the lens, so you will have to have a lot of other light, like from a bright sun outside or a flash or something.