Problem: "After I press the shutter release, my camera takes forever to actually take the photo, why?" Answer: The biggest culprit is Auto Focus. Your camera is most likely in a mode where it will take the photo only when it thinks it has found something to focus on. One big reason why SLR's have such quick response times is because the lenses have amazingly fast focusing mechanisms, not found in most SLR's. What to do: When you take a photo, look in the viewfinder to see where the focusing bracket is, maybe your LCD on your point and shoot will also show where it's trying to focus. Should be a square, a target, or something along those lines. In dim lighting, focusing will be much harder, thus try to get a photo with as much lighting as possible. Without a lot of contrast, it will also be hard for your camera to focus. Thus have the target on something VERY contrasty, such as a black and white striped wall. Also you can set the focus using something very contrasting, and then staying at the same distance, turn off auto focus. That way you'll get instant pictures if your camera supports non-auto focus.