iPhoto 09 vs Finder

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by OneBlueFire, Feb 24, 2009.

  1. OneBlueFire macrumors member


    Oct 12, 2008
    Manila, Philippines
    I've got a pretty simple dilemma.

    Currently, I use Finder to manually organize my photos in folders. I've been doing this for years despite the availability of iPhoto and Aperture, because it's just plain simple.

    Problem is, as the years progress and the photos pile up, it gets harder to find a photo that you want.

    In all honesty, iPhoto 09 looks like a great solution to my problem since it automatically organizes everything into Events, Places, and Faces. The following reasons/questions are why I haven't already shifted:

    1. I sometimes edit photos in Photoshop. I know that you can CMD+Click on a photo to edit in an external editor, but when the time comes to save the photo, I usually save the edited photo as a totally different file to not destroy the original. That leaves me with either importing the edited photo into iPhoto thus making the Events look cluttered since I have multiple copies of the same photo (edited in different ways) OR leaving the original in iPhoto while saving the edited version outside of its library which somewhat defeats the purpose of having iPhoto manage your library.

    2. I send photos to mobile phones using Bluetooth. I don't see an option in iPhoto that lets me do that (or maybe I'm just unaware of the feature). That would mean I'd have to drag the selected photos to the desktop THEN send them via Bluetooth THEN delete the copies on the desktop. Seems like a lot of work to share a few photos.

    3. The Facebook integration of iPhoto is great, but I have other networking accounts like Friendster and quite a few others not supported by iPhoto. That means I'd have to do the exact same thing I described in #2 to share them on those sites. Again, quite a lot of work.

    4. I have photos that don't fit in "Places," "Faces," and "Events" such as Wallpapers, Stock Photos, corporate images, layouts, etc. that I constantly edit and need quick access to. Should I just keep them outside of iPhoto in manually managed folders? That would mean having 2 libraries - the iPhoto and the Folders in Finder which makes it a bit redundant.

    5. The actual dilemmas are really about SHARING and EDITING my photos and the fact that I don't have direct access to their containing folders which makes managing my photos manually via Finder such a breeze (minus having to spend a lifetime trying to look for a specific photo of course).

    6. What is the most decent photo library management software? Aperture, Lightroom, iPhoto or Finder?

    I guess I just wanna know if I should stick with my current "system" of photo management or transition to iPhoto. I want to know the pros and cons of "Manual Photo Management" vs "Automated iPhoto Management".

    Hope you guys can shed some light on this and give me expert advice on what to do. Your experiences would also help a great deal. I'd love to know what you guys do to manage your vast Gigabytes of photos. I'd also love to know your "Best Practices" in terms of photo management.

    I'm open to any ideas you can throw at me, and ideas that answer questions/problems that I haven't already asked but you know I'd probably need or love to know would also help a great deal. Any recommendations on software other than iPhoto and Aperture would be great too!

    Thanks in advance!!!
  2. Unii macrumors newbie

    Dec 9, 2006
    Brisbane, Australia
    1. I use iPhoto and do a similar thing. Usually I'll edit a photo then save it as a different file, then simply hide the original in iPhoto. This keeps my iPhoto library looking uncluttered by the original is also readily available. This might not work for you though, as you say that you have multiple edits.

    2. When you go to 'send file' (from the bluetooth menu) scroll down the left side and you will see an extra 'media' drop down. Click photos and this opens iPhoto's events within the selection box. I find it VERY handy.


    4. I personally don't store my wallpapers etc. in iPhoto, because it is only where I want to view my photos. If you did want to, you could have events listed simply for those areas, or have one event for miscellaneous, then use folders to sort as required.

    6. I haven't use any of the others, but I find iPhoto, with events and faces, sorts my photos sufficiently for what I want them to be sorted by; time taken and who's in them.

    What I do with my images is put all Photos i've taken (family photos etc.) into iPhoto and most everything else into sub folders in pictures. This is easiest for me, as when i'm working with photos I don't care about my wallpapers, but when i'm changing wallpapers I don't want to deal with my photos. If that makes sense...

    hope that helps.
  3. OneBlueFire thread starter macrumors member


    Oct 12, 2008
    Manila, Philippines
    Sounds good... =)

    And I never really looked at the Media Drop Down before... My bad. =)

    So, generally, you let iPhoto do the managing for you and it's never caused you any problems? Sounds like a perfect relationship...

    So, if I decide to switch to iPhoto, I guess the initial set-up will be the most daunting task (tagging, creating events, building the faces database, creating albums, etc...), right?

    I hope other people post their ideas too...
  4. Chase R macrumors 65816

    Chase R

    May 8, 2008
    I'm going to hold out as long as I can with manually managing my photos like you did. I don't like an app doing it for me... I like doing it myself so it's just the way I like it :)
  5. Unii macrumors newbie

    Dec 9, 2006
    Brisbane, Australia
    Back when I used windows I did a very similar thing with my iTunes music. I would put it neatly into a folder (with the surname first in some circumstances) and have all the file names just how I like them, then import them into iTunes. When I moved to my mac, I just decided to let iTunes do it for me, and I don't think I've ever been into my iTunes music library in the finder since.

    I'm still a neat freak within iTunes, but since all my files are fully accessible from iTunes with multiple ways of viewing them to suit my needs, I never need to see them in the finder. Same thing with iPhoto. The best thing is that you can sort the one photo by both event and person, rather then (if you were doing it in the finder) only event OR person.
  6. skybolt macrumors 6502a

    Feb 20, 2005
    Nashville, TN, USA
    Mucking about with your photos in finder is a sure way to corrupt your photos (if you do indeed want to use iPhoto app). Letting iPhoto do what it is made to do -- organize your photos -- will cause you much less headache in the long run. Best to stay out of the finder!

    Organizing cannot be more simple. Create a folder -- maybe "Vacations", then create an album of photos -- maybe "San Francisco", and put that album in the Vacation folder. Do this with all your photos and all will be organized for you! Additionally, you could use keywords -- "John" and/or "Bill". Then create smart albums -- one each for John and for Bill. Then, whenever you have a photo with John and/or Bill in it, and you put the appropriate keyword(s) on it, the photo will automatically be put in the correct smart album! No hunting for photos! Amazingly simple! No need to doall that manual work like in Windows!
  7. Mal macrumors 603


    Jan 6, 2002
    If you open a photo via :apple:-click (or choose Photoshop as your editor, in which case you can just double-click), it creates a second copy of the photo and edits that, not the original photo. There will only be one entry in the Library, but if you hold the shift key down while looking at the picture, you can see the original, and you can revert to it via the File menu.

    Easier method is just to open the Bluetooth File Exchange program, choose send file, then drag the photos you want to send to the dialog box (might not be able to do them all at once). Nothing left over to delete. Would be nice if Apple could build that in, however.

    Same solution. Actually, in Leopard you can even access your photo library from the dialog box, on the bottom of the sidebar. Saves even more time.

    That's entirely up to you. You can create an infinite number of albums in iPhoto (well, maybe not infinite, but more than enough for most people) and organize them there if you like, or you can ignore the fact that the names Apple gives to the sections don't fit your photos and still use the program the way it was intended.

    You don't have direct access in the Finder, but you have direct access anytime you go to open or attach a file and get the standard file browser. That's usually even more helpful.

    I much prefer iPhoto, though Aperture would be a good option if your needs fit with it's criteria.

    In essence, moving to iPhoto means giving up some of the fine-tune control over the file organization, but it's a good thing. It's far more efficient at it than most people can be while still keeping everything safe.

  8. mrkgoo macrumors 65816

    Aug 18, 2005
    I don't see how using the finder makes it 'more simple'. I have iPhoto manage my entire library of photos, and finding photos is a breeze. I'm not sure how using iPhoto, but linking the images works, but here is what I do:

    I have iPhoto copy photos whenever i import. iPhoto stores the images in its own space (which are just standard folders, really). Like iTunes, I never look at the files themselves and resort to viewing, editing, retrieving using the iPhoto interface.

    The advantage is the completely non-destructive workflow promoted by iPhoto. Whenever I edit a photo, whether it be by iPhoto or by an external editor - the original file is never changed. It will save changes to a copy and keep that in a separate folder. For example, I use Graphic Converter. If I edit with GraphicConverter from iPhoto, GC opens, I can make the changes and save there, and it appears in my iPhoto library with the edits, but I can also discard the changes and revert back to the original at any time.

    Furthermore, if I use the inbuilt editor - it actually keeps a 'log file' of changes. If I go BACK to an edited photo and add more edits, it actually loads up the original, reapplies the old edits from the logfile, and makes new edits on this before saving out - the idea is you only have one edit always from your original.

    The main feature of iPhoto is the management, Faces, Places, Events, Albums, Folders, Smart Albums, Keywords, are all tools at your disposal to finding your images. Of course, it will require some foundation work to set up, and some good workflow as you go, but it's simple once you have decided what will work for you.

    When I import photos into iPhoto, I keep Events as a sort of import occurrence like a 'roll' of film. I also add files to common albums, such as 'Product Shots'. Some I just keyword, like "Architecture", and have a smart album that automatically adds photos with this keyword.

    Anytime I want to search for a specific file, or find all files of a certain type, you can just use the search or another smart album. Finding all instances of a photo that contain a particular person, shot during a particular period with a particular camera at a particular shutterspeed is easy.

    iPhoto really is a pretty powerful piece of software that is also very accessible by consumer level users, if you use it well. I think people need to give up their so-called management of files just a little bit.

    How do you organise your files in iTunes?
  9. OneBlueFire thread starter macrumors member


    Oct 12, 2008
    Manila, Philippines
    Seems like iPhoto's winning by a landslide... =)

    I guess the one thing that irritates me a little about iPhoto is the EVENTS part of it. 3 pictures of my dog taken on 1 day really isn't an "Event". I can't delete events on iPhoto without deleting the photos. I just can't seem to get why "Events" can't act like any other Album, you know, like Playlists in iTunes. Delete the playlist and the songs remain.

    I tried playing around with iPhoto 09 last night. There were 'Events' that weren't really 'Events' and Places was just naming the locations incorrectly (probably Google's fault though).

    It's pretty daunting to have to sift through thousands of pictures to make sure that a picture of me running across the street naked doesn't show up in an Event called "Mom's Birthday Party 08".

    I guess I just wish that iPhoto would let US decide when to call something an event or not regardless if the photos were taken on the same day. If it's not an event, then it just stays in the "Photos" section, not part of any Album, Event, or Smart Album, that is until we make it part of one. Am I making sense? I just don't get why every single picture has to be part of some "Event".


    Is there any workaround for this?
  10. mrkgoo macrumors 65816

    Aug 18, 2005
    That's because you're treating an event like a folder or 'album', when that's not what it's for. I understand it's a bit of a misnomer, but Events are actually more like 'rolls' of film (in fact they used to be called this in earlier iterations of iPhoto). Each 'Event' is actually an import event. The only difference between the old 'rolls' and the new 'events', apart from the option to view them, is that iPhoto tries to guess and split a roll into 'events' by day (this can be adjusted somewhat). Deleting an event would be like deleting the 'roll', which is why they don't behave like albums or playlists. Events are actually the hierarchy that iPhoto uses to organise by.

    And you can re adjust images in different events - I'm not sure if there is an easier way, but if you find an image within an event you'd rather not be in that event, you can use the merge and split commands to reorganise.

    For examples, let's say img 6 from a series of 10 should be in its own event. Open the event, click on img 6 and click 'split'. You now how have two events - 1-5, and 6-10. Now split again so you have 7-10. Highlight the event for 1-5 and the event for 7-10 and click 'merge'.

    The way Events are organised on import can be adjusted as well - they don't have to be by the day explicitly, although there are only a few options (events by day, week, 2-hr or 8-hr blocks). I noticed your comment about running naked on the same day as your Mom's B'day party - unless you were doing so DURING her party, splitting that up is pretty easy.

    Again, don't try to treat Events as something like a folder ('Grandkids'). Think of it as an 'Import Event' or 'Roll' (of film). The Events tab isn't so much a way of 'organising your files', as it is a way of 'viewing your files' (by import event).

    I realise it is a daunting task to try and get organised once you already have a library of images, but think of it this way - if you WANT it organised, you'll have to do it eventually - and that task will ONLY get bigger with more photos. I sit down and did it with my library, and I redid when Events happened, and again when faces and places arrived.

    It makes searching your vast library more manageable, and makes future organising somewhat easier. For example if you wanted to 'shift' from iPhoto to another program, there may not be an easy import option, but at least you can easily rearrange and find all the photos of 'John', or taken from Mt. Everest, or at 'Mom's B'day' to import to the new software (however it organises).
  11. Pomeroy macrumors 6502


    Sep 27, 2008
    You can Drag and Drop one Event on another and iPhoto will ask if you want to merge them into one... or do what I do and not even use Events. I use smart Albums and add Key words to each photo and use Search to find any photo I want in seconds and not have to remember what folder they are in.. If I tag a photo of uncle Bob at Lake Whatever on vacation in 2003 with the right Key words I can find that photo by " family, Bob, vacation, Lake Whatever or 2003" and still only have one photo plus the original.
  12. mrkgoo macrumors 65816

    Aug 18, 2005
    iPhoto names locations based off the longitude and latitude imbedded within the file. Either something is recording that incorrectly, or it is Google's fault - I don't see why google is coming up wrong though - what exactly are you doing with Places?

    I do both.

    Events, again, are 'Rolls of film' - they are just another way to view your photos. All photos belong to a Roll. I also have photos belong to an album and have keywords assigned. Photos of people may also belong to faces, and images can also be assigned locations.

    I can find the same file many ways, and can view my entire library ina number of different ways at a single click.
  13. OneBlueFire thread starter macrumors member


    Oct 12, 2008
    Manila, Philippines
    Hahaha! Not actually "Doing" anything to it. =)

    The iPhone embeds the Geotag data correctly.

    The pins are in the right location on the map. It's the name of the location that it gets wrong, so I'm assuming it's a Google problem.

    Now, I'm actually beginning to get the concept of "Events".

    It IS logical that pics taken on the same day usually mean 1 "Event," but in general, "Events", based on what I'm reading so far, are actually instances of photo importing, right? Figures. =)

    I guess Apple needs to tweak the algorithms of the program to make it more intelligent when importing photos. Like it checks the photos to see if they were taken in the day or at night by looking at the background then asks something like "It looks like these photos were taken at separate times of the day. Would you like to split the photos?" Or it checks the faces and the clothes people are wearing and asks "It looks like you attended 3 different parties tonight. Would you like me to split them according to the people you're with?"

    Hahaha! Too much to ask for, right? If I were to make a wishlist of things iPhoto could do, it would be a short but very hard-to-execute list...

    I really wish they can create some photo analysis algorithms that adds some kind of "Genius" feature in iPhoto. You know, detects that you're frowning and puts all photos with frowns in a group. Or maybe create a "Cloud" for faces, by uploading all the data that the Face Recognition software acquires and shares it with everyone else, so that when someone puts a photo of you in their library for the first time, it says "This Looks Like Bill Jobs. Is This Right?"

    I'm moving too far off topic. Hahaha! This is beginning to sound like a different thread. The "Hey, Apple! We Want These Features In Your Next Release" thread. =)

    Honestly, the way I see it, "Events" should be specifically for EVENTS, like trips, parties, etc., and not instances of importing a "roll" of photos. The iPhoto Sidebar, IMO, should look a little something like this to make it easier for us:

    Rolls (Contains "Rolls" marked by the date of import)
    Events (ACTUAL events... Hehehe...)
  14. mrkgoo macrumors 65816

    Aug 18, 2005
    That's very ambitious - who knows what iPhoto holds for the future.

    About "Events'> I suppose you can consider it a bit of a misnomer. It really is more 'rolls' than it is events. But the view style is very good. I wouldn't use a TRUE events sorter, since a lot of my imports are random non-events. Just me out shooting or testing.

    Again, what iPhoto decides as an event is defaulted to a day, but you can configure it to a small extent, say 8 hour blocks. And you CAN rearrange them after the fact. I don't care so much for the automatic event sorter, but I do like the view. I just arrange them myself normally.

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