Newbie iPhoto Questions

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Argelius, Jul 22, 2005.

  1. Argelius macrumors 6502


    Jun 16, 2005
    I'm a 3-week old Switcher Hatchling and am trying to figure out some things about iPhoto. Can you confirm that I'm on the right track in my understanding of how the program works.

    [1] When I import new photos (for instance from my trip to the Apple Store) I understand they automatically go to the folder iPhoto Library in the Pictures folder.

    [2] I can then select the new photos and add them to a new Album named Apple Store, so in the future within iPhoto if I want to jump to my Apple Store pictures I click on the album called Apple Store.

    [3] The photos themselves continue to reside in the iPhoto Library folder.

    [4] To further facilitate finding a particular photo in the future, I can add keywords (via Preferences); in this case I might create a new keyword called Apple Store. Am I correct that the only place you can create new keywords is within iPhoto Preferences? (If so, I find this annoying, since I'd rather do that in a "Get Info" window for a particular picture or group of pictures I've selected).

    [5] In my former Windows days when I imported new photos, I'd create a new subfolder (called Apple Store in My Pictures folder and add the photos there. So when I subseqently looked for a photo, I'd navigate to that particular folder. So does iPhoto specifically rely on the creation of albums and/or keywords to locate photos since they all end up in one giant folder (iPhoto Library)? My inclination is to manually add photos to a new subfolder I create in Pictures and then import photos in iPhoto from that folder. (Or am I sticking to my old Windows bad habits and creating extra steps that aren't necessary?)

    [6] Can you tell iPhoto to import photos to some place other than the iPhoto Library?

    [7] Finally, if I am in another application (such as Mail or a graphics program), it is difficult to find a particular photo if they are all in iPhoto Library unless I've renamed all of the file names. Am I correct that Finder does not have the ability to display the entire contents of a folder as thumbnails (as does Windows) -- you can only see one at a time in the third pane view?

    Thanks for helping me out with this! :confused:
  2. 20rogersc macrumors 65816


    Jun 28, 2005
    Brighton, UK
    It looks like you're on track from what I can understand, and I'll (try to) help with the last 3 questions.

    [5] You've got to remember that iPhoto is an app, rather than a folder. However, in a way iPhoto is like a My Pictures folder. If you open up iPhoto, you can create folders with in it, which is just the same as what you were doing in windoze, rather this time it's in an app.

    [6] If you can, it should be in the preferences, but I'm not on my iBook at the moment, and can't quite remember.

    [7] You can naviage through the iPhoto folder, as long as you know the date that you took the photo, as this is how they are stored. You first go for the year folder, then in there should be numbers relating to the months, and then the days of that month. However, what I find is easier is if you export the file you need (select the photo, then command-shift-E) to the desktop, so then when you need it, it is easy to find.

    Hope this helps

  3. wordmunger macrumors 603


    Sep 3, 2003
    North Carolina
    Okay, here are some answers.
    [1] yep
    [2] yep
    [3] yep
    [4] I may have an older version, but I can create them using the photos--show keywords command. The menu at the top allows me to add keywords
    [5] The way iPhoto works is to impose its own organization system on the photos. I don't think there's a way to tell it to use your own folder system. Many people complain about this, but it's okay with me -- see below
    [6] No
    [7] Yes, the finder doesn't allow you to view photos this way. But really, if you're thinking the "iPhoto way", that shouldn't matter. You should be finding your photos with iPhoto, not through the finder. That's the whole point--iPhoto was designed to make it easier to find photos. If you want to email a photo, you go into iphoto, and drag the photos you want into Mail -- either onto the icon on the dock, or if you've already started a message, into the message body.
  4. alex_ant macrumors 68020


    Feb 5, 2002
    All up in your bidness
    (so as not to lie by omission)

    Also note that iPhoto blows big nasty chunks. Yes, it does all those things you described - when it's not busy crashing and corrupting your photo library, or going totally out of control consuming RAM and CPU cycles only to crash and practically hang your system for 90 seconds while OS X swaps itself back into memory, even on 768MB systems - not to mention its numerous conceptual and implementation faults. Have fun!
  5. alex_ant macrumors 68020


    Feb 5, 2002
    All up in your bidness
    Unfortunately iPhoto for a lot of people takes 30+ seconds to start up, hogs all your memory when it's in use and brings the rest of the system to a crawl, and then takes even longer to quit. The iPhoto way is easier said than done!
  6. kgarner macrumors 68000


    Jan 28, 2004
    [4] Do yourself a favor and go to and search for Keyword Assistant. It makes adding keywords so trivial you will wonder why iPhoto doesn't do this in the first place.

    And as for alex_ant's comment. I personally have never had any trouble with iPhoto crashing or corrupting anything. I have over 3000 photos in my library and it performs fine. It can be a resource hog, but its not really a program that you keep running all the time. Just quit it when you are done. Spotlight is a much better solution if you need to find a few photos quickly to send via email or something.
  7. wordmunger macrumors 603


    Sep 3, 2003
    North Carolina
    Maybe it's because I have only 1500 photos, but I've never had the problems that Alex mentions. I just open it whenever I need it. In fact, I have it open right now. iBook, 1.33 ghz, 768 MB, no slowdowns, no problems.
  8. Applespider macrumors G4


    Jan 20, 2004
    looking through rose-tinted spectacles...
    2 That's right although you can now also create 'Smart Albums' where you can tell iPhoto to put all the pictures with the keyword or comment 'Apple Store' in your folder with the criteria of 4 stars so that in future you don't have to drag them. I've done this with some family pics that then appear in a Dashboard widget.

    4 You can give them keywords - created in iPhoto Preferences - or you can just do a batch command and add comments. Those are Spotlight-able too and less restrictive.

    5 Yes but iPhoto is also remembering the dates etc. So if you know you took in 2005, you can use the calendar frame (bottom right where the keywords/info frames also appear) and it will highlight which months you have pictures in for 2005, and which days in the month etc

    I import this way using Image Capture since then I can rename the files (with an Automator action) to the event name rather than the file name, get rid of any real duds before importing.

    7 Yes, the Finder does. Just change it into icon view (the 4 squares in a square) and choose 'Show View Options' and choose icon preview. Make it a decent size (using the slider at the top) and you're sorted.

    I too don't have the problems that Alex_ant has with around 8000 images. It opens within 5-10 seconds and seems fine to me. But if you do need images and don't want to have to open iPhoto, you can create a nifty little Automator action to allow you to right click on the desktop, choose your images and then copy them to another folder. V handy!
  9. deryk macrumors regular

    Feb 18, 2003
    I use to have these problems with iPhoto until I changed from a 700 Mghtz eMac to the soon to be updated 12" iBook. While my library never corrupted, iPhoto was slow and took my computer down with it.

    Additionally, when you are in iPhoto was can highlight the photos you want to email and then click the email botton at the bottom.

  10. biohazard6969 macrumors 6502a


    Feb 23, 2005
    toronto canada
    alex_ant, you said the same thing in 2 different posts.....

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