iPhoto Library question

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Rockoar, Aug 17, 2012.

  1. Rockoar macrumors regular

    Rockoar

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2012
    Location:
    Paris (France)
    #1
    I'm having trouble understanding how the iPhoto library works. I just bought a new Mac and was transferring my photos from my old Windows PC to my Mac so what I did was to create a folder I labelled "Photos" and inside that folder I created multiple folders for each set of photos (like "trip to...", "x birthday", etc.) and then opened iPhoto and imported the photos from this folders. Inside iPhoto I chose the option that avoids iPhoto from importing this photos to the iPhoto photo library but even after selecting this option the iPhoto photo library on my Finder weights almost the same (a little less actually) than all my photos combined. Does this means that iPhoto did indeed created an iPhoto photo library even tho I didn't want it to?

    What's the benefit of having iPhoto create its own library instead of having all my photos in different folders in my Finder? if any? :confused:
    I'm confused cause this is my first Mac (and experience with OS X) ever so I hope you guys can help me. Thanks in advance.
     
  2. aircanman macrumors 6502

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    Feb 2, 2011
    Location:
    UK
    #2
    This is something that got me when I first moved to macs, on a Windows machine we would put photos in names folders like you have here, but on a mac it is different.

    Firstly, I would import each windows folder one at a time, to the iPhoto library, let it make its own copy. Then put those photos in a single event, I actually think iPhoto does this automatically. Do this for each event or 'folder name' and you will be left with the photos in events or 'folders' if you like when you open iPhoto.

    Mac users don't usually look at photos by going through the folders of the computer, we open iPhoto and they are all there, in their glory, in order of date or whatever order you want.
     
  3. Rockoar thread starter macrumors regular

    Rockoar

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    #3
    So I should activate the option that says something like "copy all folders to iPhoto" on the preference menu? I'll try it as I don't want to have the same photo folders repeated in my Mac wasting space. Thanks :)
     
  4. matrix07 macrumors 68040

    matrix07

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    Jun 24, 2010
    #4
    iPhoto is an app to manage your photos. In Mac, you don't manage your pictures by folder. So how to do is you group your pictures into folder. You drag those folders into iPhoto. Those folders will be events. When you finish this, delete the folder you imported.
    Now all the pictures will be in iPhoto library. If you want to do something about it outside iPhoto just drag it/them out.
     
  5. aircanman macrumors 6502

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    #5
    I am not sure about these options, you need to open iPhoto, close all the dialog boxes that come up, then import, simple. Click the 'copy photos to iPhoto library' checkbox in the advanced menu. And you're good to go.
     
  6. Rockoar thread starter macrumors regular

    Rockoar

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    Mar 8, 2012
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    Paris (France)
    #6
    Thanks to all of you. As this is my first Mac I had trouble understanding how the libraries (even with iTunes) really worked compared to my old Windows machine. Now I got all my photos into iPhoto and all my music into iTunes and deleted the "source" folders to avoid having duplicates. Everything works fine and fluid now!
     
  7. Designer Dale macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

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    #7
    Glad this worked out OK for you. IPhoto works by creating a database of your photos as it imports them and this confuses many new users. If you want to see where all your photos are, right click the iPhoto app and select "Show Package Contents". All of your imported folders are in the one marked Masters.

    Dale
     
  8. Rockoar thread starter macrumors regular

    Rockoar

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    #8
    Thanks for the tip. Yes, it is a little confusing at first, and more so if you come from Windows. But at the end this solution a better suit organization-wise.
     
  9. new-to-mac macrumors regular

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    Jun 15, 2012
    #9
    So do people actually delete the "original@ copied folders, manipulate in iphoto and then time machine the iphoto folder so there is a backup?
     
  10. Rockoar thread starter macrumors regular

    Rockoar

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    #10
    I do have a backup copy of them in an external HDD. I think that's the wise thing to do in case something happens to iPhoto. But I guess you could also -or solely- backup the iPhoto library and be fine because you can extract the photos from there if you need to.
     
  11. PaulKemp macrumors 6502

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    Jun 2, 2009
    Location:
    Norway
    #11
    As a windows user used to managing this by yourself, iPhoto can be a little bit confusing. I've been using Albums and not events so far. What's the difference? The events are confusing with the iPhone photo stream.

    Also one other thing, I changed a photo in iPhoto, edited away some unvanted lens flare on a pic. Then I uploaded this to facebook via the facebook webpage, and the change i did wasn't reflected in the pic? What does actually iPhoto do with changes to photos?
     
  12. matrix07, Aug 19, 2012
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2012

    matrix07 macrumors 68040

    matrix07

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2010
    #12
    You should use Events. Think of Events as a conventional album but Album as a link to pictures from various Events. When you import pictures iPhoto will group pictures automatically to Events. Or when you import a picture folder, that folder will become an Events. You should use Album only when you want specific group of pictures, like when you want to print pictures from various times or places.

    Sorry to hear about that. My photo uploaded to facebook with change as it should. I use the Share function from within iPhoto, or you could drag that pic out and upload from there.
     
  13. snberk103 macrumors 603

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    #13
    It's not really a 'Mac' vs 'Windows' difference. It's that iPhoto is a Digital Asset Manager (DAM), like Aperture (another Mac only application) and Adobe's Lightroom - which is both Mac and Windows. However, iPhoto is designed for the masses, while Lightroom is intended for very serious and professional market. And priced accordingly.

    What is important to know about a DAM is that there are two parts: Your photos, and the database. In a DAM (like iPhoto) the original photo is never altered by the application - the original image is always available in case you need to go back the beginning. Everything the application does to that photo is merely recorded to the database. Easy enough to understand when thinking about keywords, titles, ratings, etc. But this also applies to Albums, Smart Albums, Events etc. The photo is not actually moved or copied (even if you 'duplicate' within iPhoto).... the application simply notes that the photo appears in the following places. When you duplicate the photo (within iPhoto) it also merely notes that in the database. So you can have many 'copies' of an image (with variations of cropping and editing) without using up more disk space.

    An "Event" is sorta like a roll film. It is all the photos you took in day, or at a party. There are different settings you can have to sort the photos, but generally (more or less) it is a single import (if you import your images after going somewhere). You can merge two (or more) events into one (you changed memory cards during the office party - iPhoto would see each card as an event - so you merge them back into one 'Party' event). Or you can split events... The party while the boss was there, and the party after management left :) Essentially, and event is a grouping of images that iPhoto has decided belong to a single time-period or activity.

    An Album is a grouping of images that you put together based on your own criteria. Often, the images may be the same as an event. A day trip out to have a picnic at a winery. But often an Album is either more selective. Perhaps only the best images from an event. Or an Album includes images from multiple events. An album can have images of your cat from when she was a kitten. An album can also be a work space.... for instance you are putting together all of your best sunset photos which you will then use to create a calendar. But the essence is that you have decided which photos go in an album, and in what order they appear.

    Crucially, an image can appear in as many albums as you want. So, if you have a photo of your friend at the office party, that image can appear in both the "Friend" album and the "Office Party" album. Any edits you make to one image will be reflected in both images (unless you use iPhoto to duplicate the image first - perhaps you need to crop it differently.)

    Smart Albums can really harness the power of the database.

    I suspect you uploaded the photo directly from the Finder, or using the FB upload interface. Go back to the beginning of my explanation.... iPhoto never alters the original file (non-destructive editing). To get your 'edited' photo you have to use iPhoto to 'share' or 'export' the image. It is during this stage that iPhoto (or any DAM) creates a new photo by applying the changes it has recorded in the database. If you just upload the image (via FB or other direct file browsing) all you are doing is uploading original file, as it came out of the camera.

    DAMs start with the assumption that you will only work with your images through their interface. When you bypass the DAM's interface you get weird results, lost images, and in a worse case scenario a corrupted database (though that is really really tough to do... they are built to be robust).

    My advice... let iPhoto suck your images into itself, and then let it do the hard work. Anyone who is touching their images outside of iPhoto, whether during the import stage or otherwise, is - imho - probably making life more difficult for themselves and working harder than they have to. Spend some time getting your head around how a database system worked. Once you do... you will most likely wonder why you took so long to start using it.:)
     
  14. PaulKemp macrumors 6502

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    Jun 2, 2009
    Location:
    Norway
    #14
    I am overwhelmed by the responses guys. Thank you very much! Great to be a part of a community with such helpful participants. So thanks matrix07 and snberk103. Great stuff! :)

    As a comment to the posts above. I guess the reason I've been using albums is due to the photstream. I now have my Aug 2012 photostream, but in the add option I only have add to a album. There is no apparent way to create a new event. How do I get pics from the photostream to a specific event? That's the reason why Ive been using albums.

    And in regards to my fb posts, as said above, I actually used the finder and chose the album form within the iPhoto library and corresponding album. That was why I was surprised it didn't reflect the recent change. I didn't use the share feature, cause I was sending it directly to another fb user. Not posting on a wall or something. And I was unsure of what the sharing feature did.

    And on a side note, and I'm guessing this is not 'best practice', Im syncing the iPhoto librarys between my iMac and MBA with dropbox. I just have to make sure iPhoto is not open on two machines at once. Anyone else doing anything like this?
     
  15. snberk103 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2007
    Location:
    An Island in the Salish Sea
    #15
    We photographers are nice people, eh?
    I don't use Photostream, so no help here. However, imo, Albums should be your primary organizational tool in any case. The "events" are better at helping you find a particular photo that you want to put into an album because 'events' shows you all the photos you took at about the same time. You may remember that you took a particular photo at a party, and 'events' should help you find that party. Then you just have to find the one particular image from the party to put into the 'album'. Once it's there you will probably usually work with it from the album view.
    Can't help here either, as I don't post to FB from iPhoto (for the record I've moved on Lightroom, so while I know the basics and the theory of iPhoto - I don't keep up on everything.) However, if you need to "share" an image without using the iPhoto Share... then just export the image to your desktop. You will get your edited version. Upload from there, and then delete the image since it's redundant.
    I think that as long as you only have one iPhoto open at a time you'll be fine.
     
  16. matrix07 macrumors 68040

    matrix07

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2010
    #16
    You can just create new Events from selected photos. Select whatever you like to group together and create a new Event from Event menu. You also can split and merge Events as you like but if you just want to add photos to a certain Event my favorite method is selecting that Event first, it will appear in Recent side bar, then go to whatever your Photostream Event and drag the photos to it.

    If you want to use Finder, the best way is to drag all the photos you want to upload out to desktop and upload from there. When the uploading finished, just delete them.
     
  17. PaulKemp macrumors 6502

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    Jun 2, 2009
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    Norway
    #17
    Thanks again folks! In just two days I feel like I'm a expert in iPhoto. :)
     

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