Manual Mode class

Manual Mode class will likely be offered again in late summer/early fall 2020.
Please comment below to be notified when registration for this class opens!


Our little ones stay little for a very short period of time. I know first hand that one day you wake up and they are grown and gone! If you are letting your camera make all the decisions for you in auto mode, then you are missing out on capturing the fleeting ordinary miracles that are all around you! Please don’t let your big-girl camera sit on auto mode! Learn to do more with your DSLR or mirrorless camera and capture the photos you’ve always wanted in manual mode! This is the class that starts journey!



It’s no secret that I love photography, and I so happy to share what I know with you! Manual ‘Mode is an 4-week, online photography course for beginning photographers who want to move beyond auto and finally learn to get the exposure they want, not the one the camera tells you. It’ll teach you why it’s so important to shoot in manual mode and show you how. But I’m not going just give you a PDF and leave you hanging. I want to walk you through it the whole way through, giving you both the information you need and a place to practice what you are learning where you can ask questions, get feedback, and learn from what others are doing and asking too! I’ll keep it simple, use easy-to-understand language, and give step-by-step instructions that will help you learn how to really use your DSLR as more than a fancy point-n-shoot camera. 


What does the class Manual Mode cover?

  • Exposure – What it is, why it’s critical to understand and step-by-step guidance on how to it in manual mode
  • Shutter speeds – Specifically which ones to use when
  • ISO – When do use different types of ISOs and how they affect your photos
  • Aperture Value – What it is and which one you should use when you take a photo
  • How to read your camera’s light meter
  • Putting all the pieces together to get the exposure you need for you vision


How does the class work?

In a private group, we work together. We start with the basics and develop a firm foundation. I’ll demystify terms like exposure triangle, aperture, f-stop and ISO. Then we will put the pieces together and empower you to shoot in manual mode. I will be there the whole time to walk you through the process! There is no need to be online at any particular time because you choose when to check in and work at your own pace. I’m there every day to answer questions and provide personalized feedback, tell you what you’re doing well and help you figure out how to do it even better. We will have a private forum via Facebook that’s just for our class, where you can share your photos and questions {or not} any time of day. There will be homework, but unlike that chemistry class you took in high school all homework is optional! You can participate during nap time, in the middle of the night, only on the weekends, or whenever you find an opportunity. I’ll be there in my horribly-embarrassing holey yoga pants, so I invite you to pull up your laptop and make yourself comfortable any time of day or night!


What do I need to take the class?

—A DSLR or mirrorless camera

—Access to the Internet and a Facebook account

—Enthusiasm and time to learn and practice


How much does it cost?

$249. Payment is taken at registration via Paypal (which accepts all major credit cards)


What do other students think of the class?
I took another class and decided I was too dumb to learn photography. You have given me hope that I CAN.  You make it all make sense and give awesome feedback along the way. THANK YOU!!! ~Jodi


If you would have told me seven weeks ago that I would take pics with a DSLR and have a grasp and speak in terms I didn’t know existed, I would have chucked. You’ve made it fun Nancy.  Thank you! ~Tam 


So thankful to learn so much from you about capturing life around us in a way that is different than just auto shots will do. I have to admit, I really thought automatic was fine, until my friend told me she NEVER shoots in auto anymore after taking your class. I thought I’d try it and she was so right! ~Karla


I was following the Ordinary Miracles blog for quite some time before I found the time and guts to take the Manual’n’More class. I was a bit skeptical to taking an online class from my home in Scandinavia, with the teacher in Arizona!! That fear was so unnecessary! The time difference and foreign language did not matter at all!  You can tell Nancy is a teacher deep inside, because she would always find a new way to explain, check if you are following, and she is very patient!  Nancy is truly flexible, always there to give a reply, to answer questions, no questions are ever too silly. She manages to create such a learning environment, online!, that it feels okay to post pics that aren’t really that good. She gives individual feedback, and it was just amazing how close she manages to follow up her class! She doesn’t keep the good parts of photography to herself, and you can tell that she really loves to pass on her knowledge!  ~Lill-Karin


I got some photography books out of the library more than a year ago to try to learn how to take better pictures, and didn’t get far. It all seemed kind of confusing and technical. This class has been so understandable! ~Mary


Nancy, thank you for being such an amazing teacher!! I never knew I could have taken photos like the ones I’ve recently done until I started your class. Your encouragement and constant feedback, in language which a “newbie” like me could understand, gave me the push I needed to feel comfortable to move from auto to manual. Your detailed lessons and assignments set me up for success; each lesson built upon the prior lesson, giving me the foundation, tools and knowledge to realize shooting in manual was possible. I honestly thought shooting photos in manual was out of my reach until I found your class. In giving me the “how and why” throughout the course, you took away the fear and intimidation of shooting in manual. Thank you so much for sharing your gift of teaching and your passion for photography.  ~Amy
Sound like something you’d like to participate in? Feel free to give me a holler if you have any questions. Hope to see you there… holey yoga pants and all!

  • November 10, 2014 - 4:39 pm

    Carrie K. - Currently in the process of adopting from China. Our agency has indicated that we can expect a referral in the very near future. I would love to take your class, but may have to postpone depending on when we travel. Please put me on the list for this spring, though. Love your blog and your photography!ReplyCancel

    • November 19, 2014 - 12:29 am

      admin - Hi Carrie,
      Thank you so much for the interest in this class! I did put your name on the interest list. And you’ll get an email prior to registration opening so you know right when it opens. This class can (but not always) fill up quickly.
      And CONGRATULATIONS on your growing family! Can I be a total snoop and ask boy or girl? How old? HOW EXCITING! And I know that the wait it torture at the same time.

  • November 25, 2014 - 5:53 am

    Rebecca Clayton - I’m Jodi’s sister in law. I told her I wished I lived near her so I could take the classes she was taking, and then she told me they were online!ReplyCancel

    • November 26, 2014 - 3:21 am

      admin - Hi Rebecca! It’s so nice to meet you. I’ve really enjoyed having Jodi in my class and so flattered that she’s refer me to her sister!
      I definitely put your name/email on the interest list for the Composition 101 class and the Lightroom class. So when I know sure dates and prior to registration you’ll get an email from me with the details. Thank you so much for the interest in the classes!

  • February 20, 2015 - 9:23 pm

    Shannon - Please put me on the list for the Spring class!!ReplyCancel

    • February 21, 2015 - 7:54 pm

      admin - I just did, Shannon! Excited to have you along this spring! ~NancyReplyCancel

  • March 10, 2015 - 11:03 pm

    Amy - We are expecting our referral for a little girl from China in the next couple months… I would love to take your spring course!ReplyCancel

    • March 13, 2015 - 3:28 pm

      admin - Thank you so much for interest in my class, Amy! I put you on the interest list. I’d LOVE to have you there! I’ll send you a notification when registration starts. ~nancyReplyCancel

  • March 17, 2015 - 2:35 pm

    Mary - Put me on the list for the spring class. Took a class from a photographer a few years ago, but remember very little. Back to using auto and zoom lens. :/ReplyCancel

  • March 22, 2015 - 2:53 pm

    beth larson - I’d love to know when your class is available again
    (manualn’more) thanks!ReplyCancel

  • July 31, 2015 - 2:01 pm

    Susanna - I would love to know when your next class will be. Thanks!ReplyCancel

    • July 31, 2015 - 6:32 pm

      admin - I’m not sure when the next class will be, but possibly early 2016. I’ll put you on the interest list and let you know for sure, Susanna. thank you for the interest in the class!ReplyCancel

  • August 17, 2015 - 7:08 pm

    Stephany Israel - im interested in your Manual and more class for next time thank youReplyCancel

    • September 2, 2015 - 9:21 pm

      admin - Hi Stephanie,
      I’m planning the next class for Jan of 2015. I’ll let you know when I know for sure. Thank you for the interest in the class!

  • August 24, 2015 - 2:07 am

    Tom Small - Hi Dana Ball recommended your course to me. Please let me know when you have another one. Tom SmallReplyCancel

    • September 2, 2015 - 9:20 pm

      admin - I’m planning the next class for Jan of 2015. I’ll let you know when I know for sure. Thank you for the interest in the class! And I’ll have to thank Dana too!

  • December 2, 2015 - 4:54 pm

    Terri Jay - Hello,
    Can you recommend a place to buy the camera for the class?ReplyCancel

    • December 2, 2015 - 5:28 pm

      admin - I sure can! Amazon or your local photo/camera store will do. Amazon will likely have much better prices than a store. But my favorite place to recommend is Canon’s refurbished store if you’re comfortable buying used/refurbished equipment. Coming directly from them, it’s guaranteed for 12 month and BIG saving from buying new. My last camera purchase was a refurb and I’ve not had a single problem with it at all. Good Canon refurbished, camera and you shouldn’t have any trouble finding it. Email me if you need more help fiding it or deciding what camera and/or lens to purchase.ReplyCancel

  • February 8, 2016 - 10:04 pm

    Liz Mays - I’m interested in the next class, so if you can email me when registration opens, I’d appreciate it. Thanks!ReplyCancel

    • February 12, 2016 - 5:06 pm

      admin - Will do! Thx for the interest in the class, Liz!ReplyCancel

  • March 1, 2016 - 10:05 pm

    Michelle K - Hi Nancy! Can you please put me on the list for this class? Thank you!ReplyCancel

    • March 6, 2016 - 12:23 am

      admin - will do too!ReplyCancel

  • March 7, 2016 - 10:48 pm

    Liberty Joy - My 16 year old would love to take this class this summer if she’s allowed.ReplyCancel

    • March 7, 2016 - 10:54 pm

      admin - Liberty, I’ve sent you an email.ReplyCancel

  • April 9, 2016 - 7:49 pm

    Karen - I am interested in taking this course but I am away for work/ vacation from June 16-july 4. Is that missing too much time? Should i wait until the next one?ReplyCancel

  • June 9, 2016 - 3:25 am

    Hanna Saario - Hi! I am interesterd to come to the next class of manuals and more!ReplyCancel

    • June 9, 2016 - 5:08 am

      admin - Thank you for interest in the class, Hanna. I put your name on the interest list. The next class will likely be late fall, 2016.ReplyCancel

  • July 18, 2016 - 12:23 am

    Telina Sheppers - I would love to participate in your November photog class 🙂 Please send more info!ReplyCancel

  • August 11, 2016 - 11:19 am

    Laura Nash - I am interested in signing up for the Manual and More class beginning in November!ReplyCancel

    • September 14, 2016 - 8:06 pm

      admin - Hi Laura,
      I just opened registration for the next 2 classes, the Manual ‘n More class that you were interest in and the following editing class. There are lots of detials re the classes on this site, but if you have ANY questions give me a holler. ~NancyReplyCancel

  • August 11, 2016 - 5:30 pm

    Tricia - I am interested in this class, please send me more info. thanks!!ReplyCancel

    • September 14, 2016 - 8:06 pm

      admin - Hi Tricia,
      I just opened registration for the next 2 classes, the Manual ‘n More class that you were interest in and the following editing class. There are lots of detials re the classes on this site, but if you have ANY questions give me a holler. ~NancyReplyCancel

  • August 21, 2016 - 11:59 pm

    Telina Shepperd - Hello! Any update on dates for the fall photography class??


    • September 14, 2016 - 8:05 pm

      admin - Hi Telina,
      I just opened registration for the next 2 classes, the Manual ‘n More class that you were interest in and the following editing class. There are lots of detials re the classes on this site, but if you have ANY questions give me a holler. ~NancyReplyCancel

  • September 13, 2016 - 8:23 am

    Frédérique - I would very much like to take the class which starts in November. Could you please put me on the list?ReplyCancel

  • September 13, 2016 - 4:41 pm

    Cindy Edgar - I would love to be added to the list for the upcoming class.ReplyCancel

  • October 15, 2016 - 11:31 pm

    Lisa Berkley - I would love to be added to your 2017 class. Amanda McCollum recommended you!ReplyCancel

  • December 12, 2016 - 3:57 am

    Elizabeth Jones - I am very interested in your upcoming class!! Just received my first SLR camera for my birthday!!ReplyCancel

  • December 13, 2016 - 5:05 pm

    Laura Haley - please let me know when this class opens up again! My friend highly recommended it!ReplyCancel

  • January 7, 2017 - 5:48 pm

    Michelle - Please add me to the list for upcoming classes.ReplyCancel

  • January 10, 2017 - 10:03 pm

    Andrea - I’d love to take the class in spring 2017. It might be nice to know how to use my camera – that I bought 9 years ago!ReplyCancel

  • January 20, 2017 - 8:16 am

    Elizabeth Jones - I thought I posted here as I am interested in your class but have not heard anything yet. I am so eager to get started! My friend, Dana Ball, recommended your class. When do you think you will start your next one?ReplyCancel

    • January 24, 2017 - 5:29 am

      admin - I will likely offer a small class (not many students) for the Manual ‘n More class in the late spring/early summer with registration starting in the spring (Feb or March ish) Hopefully that’ll work for you!

  • February 14, 2017 - 4:28 am

    James - I am possibly interested in taking this class. When the registration opens, how long do we have until we have to make a final decision?ReplyCancel

    • February 14, 2017 - 3:02 pm

      admin - Thank you for the interest in my class. After registration opens, you’ll have how ever long it takes the class to fill or until class starts to make a final decision, which ever comes first. Most of my classes fill up, sometimes quickly and sometimes not. But not always. Sorry that’s such a ambiguous answer. ~nancyReplyCancel

  • February 20, 2017 - 7:08 pm

    Kelly - Interested! Would love to be notified when the next class opens!ReplyCancel

    • February 22, 2017 - 7:55 pm

      admin - I’ll let you know when registration opens, Kelly. And thank you for interest in my class! ~nancyReplyCancel

  • February 22, 2017 - 3:59 pm

    Dana Stoltzfus - Hello, I’ve been wanting to take your classes for several years. Your blog shines with Jesus and your photos and both make life better. I know if I organized myself with YouTube videos and planned times to shoot I could probably do it but I am NOT that disciplined nor good at overcoming my lack of confidence!! I need more of a push! PLEASE add me to your spring class! Esp since I’ll likely be spending time in Yosemite in May, and road tripping across the US in June! Thanks so much!ReplyCancel

    • February 22, 2017 - 7:54 pm

      admin - You bet! I’ll let you know. I’d love to have you in class and give you that extra little (very kind and supportive) “push” to learn something new.

  • March 21, 2017 - 11:52 am

    Roberta - Well, it’s been years of following your b.e.a.u.t.i.f.u.l posts <3 I hardly ever find the time to post anymore, but I am still taking tonnes of photos. Always eager to learn how to make them better. We are currently in Zhongshan (previously volunteering with NDS) but are in the process of making that inevitable move to NewDay up in Beijing, Adrian has been commuting up until now. Would love to take on of your classes once we settle in up at that New Day. Have wonderful travels, I hear your adopting again, congratulations. Travel safe!ReplyCancel

  • April 3, 2017 - 5:31 pm

    Jaylene Elmslie - Please send me a notification of your next class. Thank you.ReplyCancel

    • June 3, 2017 - 12:25 am

      admin - Jaylene, I JUST opened registration for this class! Holler if you have any questions. Hoping we can work with each other soon!ReplyCancel

  • April 5, 2017 - 2:54 am

    Jamie - Know you’re VERY busy right now expanding your family, but I’m interested in knowing when you’re doing another class. My baby is growing and I want to capture as much as I can!ReplyCancel

  • April 22, 2017 - 2:53 pm

    Nan Pope - Nancy- please add me to your class list. Looks like I might finally have time to take your class. I’ve wanted to for quite a while now.ReplyCancel

  • June 8, 2017 - 3:29 am

    Christine Flynn - Would love to sign up for the class! I have been following your inspirational blog since before we brought home our daughter in 2012!ReplyCancel

    • June 8, 2017 - 3:22 pm

      admin - Registration for the next 2 Manual ‘n More classes is open right now. Holler if I can be of any help! I’d love to have you in class, Christine!ReplyCancel

  • March 20, 2018 - 11:22 pm

    James - Nancy I would love to take both the manual and beyond manual classes. I was refered by a friend. How does she and I get the additional discount?ReplyCancel

    • March 20, 2018 - 11:51 pm

      admin - Hi James, I sent you an email with the referral discount info. All you need to do is ask for it… which you did! Thank you for the interest in taking my class! ~nancyReplyCancel

  • April 30, 2018 - 8:35 pm

    Elizabeth Jones - I was not able to take your classes this spring but, hopefully, will be able to in the fall. I would like to register for both your Manual Mode and Beyond Manual at the same time. Thanks!ReplyCancel

  • May 13, 2018 - 2:18 pm

    Niina - I would like to be notified when the registration for the Manual Mode course will start in fall 2018. Thank you!ReplyCancel

  • June 19, 2018 - 12:49 pm

    Kathy Budy - Please let me know when registration opens for your Manual Mode class for September 2018 opens!ReplyCancel

  • June 21, 2018 - 12:21 am

    Lauren Sanders - Just got my new camera. Would love to know about the next class.ReplyCancel

  • July 24, 2018 - 11:01 am

    Tabitha Wirth - Would be interested in taking both classes. I was also referred by someone, I’d like to make sure they get the referral discount as well. Looking forward to open enrollment! Thanks!ReplyCancel

  • October 17, 2018 - 2:35 am

    Carol - Hi Nancy! I would like to be notified when you are offering your next Manual & More class and then your beyond manual class. Thank you!ReplyCancel

  • December 15, 2018 - 1:11 pm

    Carol Spears - I saw photos one of your students took and asked her where she learned such great photography skills! It was here. I would love to be notified when the next Manual Mode Class opens for registration. Thank you!!

    Carol SpearsReplyCancel

  • January 5, 2019 - 12:05 pm

    Cynthia Owens - I would be interested in your next Manual Mode Class.ReplyCancel

  • January 28, 2019 - 8:04 pm

    Kim Smith - HI! I would love to take your Manual Mode Class!



    • January 29, 2019 - 1:08 am

      admin - I’ll be sure and send you an email when registration opens! Thx for the interest in the class! ~nancyReplyCancel

  • May 12, 2019 - 7:35 am

    Jeanette Sheffield - Eager to take this class and learn more about my camera.ReplyCancel

    • September 16, 2019 - 1:56 am

      admin - The next class will start in Oct 2019 and is registering now! Give me a holler if you have any questions about it! ~nancyReplyCancel

    • October 16, 2019 - 6:36 pm

      admin - Hi Jeanette! the next class is now registering and starts on 10/22/19. Please let me know if you have any questions! ~nancyReplyCancel

  • June 29, 2019 - 3:58 am

    Mai - Please let me know when you are offering the next Manual Mode class. Thank you kindlyReplyCancel

    • September 16, 2019 - 1:55 am

      admin - the next class starts in Oct of 2019 and is registering now! Give me a holler if you have any questions about it! ~nancyReplyCancel

    • October 16, 2019 - 6:36 pm

      admin - Hi Mai! the next class is now registering and starts on 10/22/19. Please let me know if you have any questions! ~nancyReplyCancel

  • October 16, 2019 - 6:21 pm

    Melita Sternad Lemut - I am interested in your Manual Mode class. Is there still some space for the one starting in October? Thank you in advance.ReplyCancel

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