I love using iPhoto for photo touch-ups and sharing pictures on Facebook, but I’m still getting used to the way it handles its image library. Apple created iPhoto with non-destructive editing in mind, so iPhoto’s library is always kept separate from the system-wide photos (like Photo Stream and Camera Roll). I’m still getting used to iPhoto, but one big step in the right direction was reading Andy Ihnatko’s in-depth iPhoto review, which highlights the differences between flagging and favoriting photos. Flagging a photo will simply mark it and place it in a separate “Flagged” album. Favoriting a photo (using the medal button) will yield similar results, but will also keep the photo around after you’ve deleted the original from the Camera Roll. If that’s a bit confusing, think of it this way: if you really want to make sure you keep a copy of a photo, just add it to your favorites. That photo will then stay there until you delete it or un-favorite it.
So the way I’m trying to work with iPhoto now is this:
- Snap a picture on the 4S
- Browse the Camera Roll using iPhoto and favorite the best shots
- Filter out all non-favorite pictures (or head to the Favorites album)
- Edit the newest Favorites
- Export the edited Favorites to iTunes
- Head to iTunes on my Mac, grab the exported images from the iPhoto Shared Folder, and import these final shots into my Mac’s photo library
It’s not a straightforward process, but it does mean that what I end up importing on my Mac are only the keepers, and none of the blurry, crappy shots I took while laughing. I’m telling myself that this will ultimately save me space and time in the long run…but it could simply mean that I just want to use iPhoto just a little too much. We’ll see how long this workflow lasts.