The part of the camera that adjusts how large the hole is for light to be allowed into the sensor. Commonly referred to as f-stop or f-number. Aperture on the iPhone is fixed and cannot be adjusted.
Depth of Field
How much of your photo is in focus. If your photo has a sharp subject and the background is blurry, it would be considered a shallow depth of field. Commonly used to produce effects like “Bokeh”, where globes of light caused by distortion due to depth of field are used to artistically frame the subject. Please note that a 3x lens will give a shallower depth of field than 0.5x. Often confused with, but distinct from focal length/distance.
Digital Single Lens Reflex Camera. The standard for digital cameras used by professionals.
Both how long the shutter stays open (shutter speed), and how sensitive the sensor is to light (ISO).
The distance between the center of the lens and the light sensor of your camera.
Adjusting the lenses to make a portion of the photo sharp and clear. This process may make other parts less clear or even blurry, which is sometimes used to artistic advantage. See “Depth of Field”.
Bright lines outlining the objects in your viewfinder that are currently in focus. Useful for precise adjustments.
Front Facing Camera
The camera on the front of your device, usually used to take a photo of yourself.
High Efficiency Image Format. Produces smaller, better quality files than JPEG, but has much less support from sharing services.
A small graph used to gauge the distribution of light in a photo.
A number indicating how sensitive the camera sensor is to light.
A standard image format. It produces small, good quality photos. Supported by nearly every service.
The display of live, automatically generated, values on the viewfinder display. These include values for shutter speed, ISO, and white balance.
A type of photo that is taken very close to the subject so that fine details can be seen. In some cases it may reveal detail not visible to the naked eye, or make it ambiguous as to what the subject really is.
One million pixels. Often used as a unit of resolution.
A tiny unit of light. Or in this case, your camera app.
Editing done to a photo after it’s taken. This can include editing done by the camera itself as well as edits made by the photographer.
Apple’s special RAW format that gives photos some “magic” processing while retaining data that is usually removed from compressed images.
A “digital negative”. The purest sensor data from your camera.
Rear Facing Camera
The camera on the back of your device, that’s facing what you’re looking at.
Simply, how many pixels are in an image. More pixels means a larger file size, but also higher fidelity when printed or displayed in a very large format.
A shutter that doesn’t open and close all at once, but rather captures the image a line at a time. This can lead to some interesting distortion in certain situations.
See: Front Facing Camera.
How long the shutter stays open to expose the sensor to light.
A lens with a long focal length that makes it appear that your subject is closer to you. Produces the most flattering portrait photos.
An adjustment to the light “temperature” of your photo that in order to have white appear correctly, and by doing so correct the appearance of other colors.
A lens with a short focal length that gives you a large field of view.