Shooting images in the city after or near dark without a tripod takes time and patience. You are always fighting movement blur, visual noise and underexposure, along with blow outs of bright lights which you almost always either need or they are just there. That's why I often take 5 to 15 photos to get the image I want. And this doesn't account for distortions from the wide angle lenses I favor. These must be managed. I suggest that beginners try a few shots on auto settings to see what the camera thinks the best settings should be. Study all the settings and then shoot a bunch of shots while adjusting each setting to see what happens. After taking a few hundred photos, you will be able to size up a scene or subject and instinctively adjust to what you want for a range of shots. Sounds like a lot of effort, and it is. But it works. You will never rely on your auto mode again because once you create the image you want, auto is not good enough.