Apple has an odd fetish regarding hidden features. Mac OS X and Apple apps come with features we don’t know about and Apple isn’t telling. For example, how many libraries do you have in iPhoto? One, right?
Most Mac users who have iPhoto have one, very large, overly complex library of photos with way too many Albums. Here’s a hidden and very easy way to create and manage multiple iPhoto photo libraries with a few clicks.
Hello? Option Click Is A New Trick
Most of us simply click on the iPhoto Dock icon and open iPhoto’s single, overly large library of digital photos. Mine is bursting at the seams with nearly 20,000 photos and a few hundred albums.
Events? Now that iPhoto does Events I have hundreds of events, too.
Is there a better way to organize iPhoto? Yes. It’s multiple iPhoto libraries to the rescue
All thanks to a little known, but highly useful feature in iPhoto. It’s called the Option-Click.
Hold down the Option key and click the iPhoto Dock icon (or, double-click the iPhoto icon in the Finder). Here’s the dialog box you get:
Your default iPhoto library is called iPhoto Library (default).
The options are: open Other Library… or Create New… library, and Choose which library to open. In other words, you can have many different individual iPhoto libraries.
Each can have different events and different albums. You’re creating and using multiple iPhoto libraries
Select Create New… and give your new, blank, empty iPhoto library a name.
Import whatever photos you want into the new library and organize accordingly. Repeat the process for additional iPhoto libraries. Use the Option-Click keystroke combo to get a list of your libraries and choose which one to open.
Or, use the free iPhoto Buddy app which does the same thing in a more elegant manner and with a few more options. It’s merely an easier way to create, manage, and switch between multiple iPhoto libraries.
The benefits become obvious once you’ve created a second iPhoto library. Performance is improved. Organization and segregation is easier and more flexible. The price tag? None. The built-in iPhoto option is free and so is iPhoto Buddy.