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iPhoto Tips and Tricks

Tutorials and Guides to Using iPhoto


iPhoto is one of those applications that are simply must-haves. Yes, there are more robust image management applications, such as Aperture and Lightroom, but iPhoto is included with every new Mac. It's easy to use, and it can meet the needs of most users, including aspiring professional photographers.

This, then, is a collection of iPhoto tips and tutorials, from the simplest task to the more creative usages of iPhoto.

How to Upgrade to iPhoto '11

Using iPhoto - iPhoto Tips and Tricks

Upgrading from iPhoto '09 to iPhoto '11 is actually pretty easy. If you purchase iPhoto as part of iLife '11, just run the iLife '11 installer. If you purchase iPhoto '11 from Apple's Mac Store, the software will be automatically installed for you.

But there are two things you should be sure to do; one before you install iPhoto '11, and one after you install it, but before you launch it for the first time.

Back Up iPhoto '11

Digital photos are some of the most important and meaningful things you keep on your computer, and as with any important files, you should maintain current backups of them. If you've imported some or all of your photos into iPhoto '11, you should also back up your iPhoto Library on a regular basis.

Create Multiple Photo Libraries in iPhoto '11

Using iPhoto - iPhoto Tips and Tricks

By default, iPhoto stores all imported photos in a single photo library, but did you know that you can create additional photo libraries? This tip works for iPhoto '09 as well as iPhoto '11.

Use iPhoto to Batch Change Photo Names

When you import new images into iPhoto, chances are their names aren't very descriptive, particularly if the images came from your digital camera. Names like CRW_1066, CRW_1067, and CRW_1068 can't tell me at a glance that these are three images of our backyard bursting into summer color.

It's easy to change an individual image's name. But it's even easier, and less time consuming, to change the titles of a group of photos simultaneously.

Add Descriptive Names to Your iPhoto Images

When you transfer images from your camera into iPhoto, the first thing you may notice is that each image's name is something less than descriptive. In most cases, iPhoto keeps the names assigned by your camera's internal file system, such as CRW_0986 or Photo 1. Neither name is very helpful when it comes to sorting or searching for images.

Create a Smart Album to Find Photos Without Keywords

Create a Smart Album to Find Photos Without Keywords

iPhoto allows you to tag photos with descriptive keywords that can later be used as search terms when you're trying to find specific images. That's quite a good return on the relatively small amount of time it takes to add keywords to photos. But the process does take time, and if you're anything like me, you tend to put off adding keywords in favor of just having fun with iPhoto.

The problem with waiting to add iPhoto keywords is that you tend to forget which photos have keywords and which ones don't. Even worse, iPhoto doesn't appear to have a way to tell you which images are missing keywords, leaving you to try to work it out on your own.

Despite how it appears, there is a way to get iPhoto to show you all of the images that are missing keywords, and it doesn't require any advanced skills or magic tricks.

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