My article published today on Improve Photography is a technical how-to article. If you use Lightroom and want to know how to use the Tone Curve panel (the one right after the Basic panel in the Develop module), then look no further and click here.
For two years, I skipped the Tone Curve panel entirely. As I say in the article, I could make good images without it. My entire portfolio is filled with images that never had an adjustment done in the Lightroom Tone Curve panel. That won't be the case any longer. While some of the effects produced by the Tone Curve panel aren't something I'll do for my usual client (family photos shouldn't really be "cross-processed"), just knowing the possibilities will make my images better.
If you're avoiding a particular photography skill or photo-editing software feature, there's nothing like setting a deadline to write an article that aims to teach the skill or feature to an international audience on a major photography website.
I'm proud of the detail and clarity my article brings to the topic. I also know now that the Tone Curve panel isn't really that complicated.
If you use Lightroom, read my article and you'll see for yourself.