Aperture & F-Stops
Your aperture, is, like your shutter, primarily a tool that controls exposure. It's literally a hole in your lens that lets in light. But it's actually far more exciting than that.
Once you understand how it works, you can use your aperture creatively to completely change the look of your pictures by creating soft fuzzy backgrounds and foregrounds.
Your camera has a semi automatic mode called Aperture Priority or Aperture Value (depending on the make) which helps you be creative whilst it works out the exposure for you.
And if you don't understand about f numbers, don't despair - it's all explained here.
- The aperture - what is it?
- Setting aperture
- F numbers - what do they mean?
- Aperture and depth of field
7 Steps to Perfect Pictures has massively improved my retouching skills overall.
Previously I'd used Lightroom to catalogue (I'm much better organised now I'm following Mike's example) and then fiddle with images in an unstructured way. Now I know what I want to do and how to do it.