Have you been taking all these photography tips to heart? And you're practicing on the "P" setting - that's where you have to start (see more info HERE). Now that you've done that for a few weeks, let's move on to what you really want to know - how to get that great looking Blurry Background in your pictures. It's what everyone wants - subject in focus, bokeh (blurry background) in back. Here's my example:
See how her face is in focus and the bush isn't (and the flowers aren't either). That's what most people want to learn to do with their camera. You'll get this a little on the "P" setting, but if you're ready, we're moving to the next advancement in camera usage: the "Av" setting (for Nikons, it's just "A").
So flip your dial off of "P" and onto "Av" (or "A"). That stands for "aperture", or how wide the opening on your lens gets. Aperture controls depth of field. Or in other words, how deep you want the focus to go. If you want the whole picture in focus, it has to go really deep, so that's a big Av number. If you want just a little bit in focus, that's small depth of field, or a small Av number. In the picture above my aperture number (it's called an F Stop) was F/1.8. When in Av mode your little wheel dial on top will change your F number. So look what happens when I dial it way up, to F/14 for the picture below:
See how much more the bush is in focus? That's what a large depth of field will do. But I'm sure most of you are wanting a small depth of field. So use the focus lock technique and focus on your subject's eyes. Try it with a low depth of field and a high depth of field. So you can get a comparison like this:
F/14 on the left and F/1.8 on the right.
A general rule: the number of people in the shot, the f-stop number you need to use (4 people: f/4, etc)
Don't be scared of Av mode! it's just like P, but you choose your f number and then the camera sets the rest for you.
Now, many of you are probably using the lens that came with your camera. If you are, you can only go down to f/5.6. If you've never purchased a lens, let me point you in the right direction:
Alright, questions on Aperture?? Go practice it!!