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Former Aperture users... don't delete the app quite yet. I have a helpful, practical purpose for keeping it on your hard drive: to add IPTC metadata (semi-automatically) to your pictures.

I'm using the Automator/Aperture tandem to include my copyright and author info with images that may fall outside my normal workflow, and don't have camera functions to include them. I've been adding data to iPhone images and those from the Fujifilm XF10. Here's how it works.

step-1-quick-action.jpg Start with an Automator Quick Action.

First you have to create an Automator Quick Action. I outlined the steps on how to do this in the article, Create Your Own Quick Action Shortcuts for Photo Tasks. This time, however, you're going to build a Quick Action using a series of short AppleScripts written for Aperture. Here's the recipe.

add-iptc-workflow-web.jpg

The actions are in this order: Import Photos, Set IPTC Tags, Export Versions. When I add the actual fields to the Automator Action, I keep it simple. Study the screenshots carefully to customize your own workflow. Here are the actual IPTC tags that I include.

set-iptc-tags-web.jpg

Once you have everything completed, Save the Quick Action. Automator will place it in the proper Services folder so it's available when working at the Finder level in macOS Mojave. Now it's time to play.

Make sure Aperture is open and running in the background. I would also create a new folder on your Desktop to receive the copyrighted images.

Copy a small batch of images to a folder on your Desktop. Open them in Mojave's Finder using Gallery View. You can peruse the current EXIF data for the shots. Now let's add the IPTC info. Select them all (CMD-A), then choose your new Quick Action from the gear menu. Automator will go to work.

add-info.png

In the background, Automator will run all the pictures through Aperture, add the data you want, then place them in the folder you selected on the Desktop. It will take a few seconds per image to process. One it's finished, all of your copyrighted images should be in their new folder. You can check one by opening it in Preview and reading the Info panel.

info-panel.png

I imported these IPTC pictures into Photos for macOS Mojave, worked with them, then exported them out of the app. All of my metadata stuck with the pictures.

There are lots of individual uses for this workflow. It just depends on the data you add to the Automator Action. Give it a try and see what you come up with.

The Apple Photos Book for Photographers, 2nd Edition

Updated for macOS High Sierra, the The Apple Photos Book for Photographers, 2nd Ed. provides you with the latest tips, techniques, and workflows for Apple's photo management and editing application. Get your copy today!

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

Many excellent headline features for photographers appeared in macOS Mojave, but a small one that's truly helpful is the debut of filenames with our thumbnails. They're helpful in many ways, including knowing which camera the image was captured with when shooting RAW.

display-filenames.jpg Both original filenames and edited titles are displayed here in Photos. Read on to learn how to control this.

Alternatively, you can have a title appear with your thumbnail instead of a filename. (This used to be your only choice.) Either approach is controlled by the "Add a Title" field in the Info box (Window > Info). Just make sure that you have titles turned on so that either of these bits of information shows up (View > Metadata > Titles).

If the Add a Title field is left blank, then Photos will display the filename when viewing thumbnails. On the other hand, if you do add a title, then that is displayed instead. You can see examples of both in the illustration above.

And for those situations where I want the filename to appear, but I do want some additional information in the metadata, I enter that in the Add a Description field, which has no effect on the metadata displayed with the thumbnail.

Like I said, this isn't a headline feature. But for those of us who use Photos regularly, we really appreciate (finally) having filenames appear with our images.

The Apple Photos Book for Photographers, 2nd Edition

Updated for macOS High Sierra, the The Apple Photos Book for Photographers, 2nd Ed. provides you with the latest tips, techniques, and workflows for Apple's photo management and editing application. Get your copy today!

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

One of the pleasing aspects of iPhone photography is how easily you can creatively fine tune your images in the Photos ecosystem. A perfect example is a picture captured in Portrait Mode on the iPhone can be further refined in Photos for macOS, without losing the Portrait Mode magic. Here's an example.

iPhone-Portrait-Mode.jpg "Jessica" - This image was captured with an iPhone X in Portrait Mode, then opened in Photos for macOS. All of my Portrait Mode options are available, as illustrated here. Photo by Derrick Story.

Once you capture the image, it is propagated to all of your iCloud devices. Here, it appears in Photos for macOS. I can stick with the original Portrait Mode if I wish, or I can switch to one of the other options, such as Stage Mono.

stage-mono.jpg Same image, but now I've switched to Stage Mono Portrait Mode.

Once I've settled on the mode that I want to use, I can then further refine the image with Photos' adjustment tools. Any changes that I make here are also propagated back to all my iCloud connected devices.

This workflow is fast, easy, with results that your subjects are sure to like.

The Apple Photos Book for Photographers, 2nd Edition

Updated for macOS High Sierra, the The Apple Photos Book for Photographers, 2nd Ed. provides you with the latest tips, techniques, and workflows for Apple's photo management and editing application. Get your copy today!

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

You Don't Need a Drone to Get High

As much as I would love to fly my Spark in New York, it wasn't practical (or even allowed) at many of the locations that I visited. But there's still the old-fashioned way of leveraging observation decks and upper-story windows to get those great views from above.

City of New York from One World Trade Center City of New York form the One World Trade Center observation deck. Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II with 9mm body cap lens. Photo by Derrick Story.

One of my favorite views was from the observation deck of the One World Trade Center. It's a 360 degree stroll around New York City. The windows are very clean (amazingly, don't know how they do it), and if you use good technique, you can come away with some dynamic views of the city below.

om-d-em5-mark-2.png

For this shot, I used the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II with the Olympus 9mm body cap lens up against the glass.

I uploaded the RAW file to Photos for macOS, then used the Luminar 2018 editing extension to process the RAW file. After output, I opened the sampled-down image in Photoshop for just a touch of Smart Sharpen.

I've always love views from above. Drones have certainly expanded that work that I do. But I'm still very attracted to an excellent observation deck in a great location.

The Apple Photos Book for Photographers, 2nd Edition

Updated for macOS High Sierra, the The Apple Photos Book for Photographers, 2nd Ed. provides you with the latest tips, techniques, and workflows for Apple's photo management and editing application. Get your copy today!

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

Aperture users who have aging libraries from the past don't need to keep nursing their geriatric host application to view, edit, and share those images. Photos for macOS can handle that job just fine.

When I bought a new iMac for my studio computer, I opted not to load Aperture on it. Instead, I have Photos for macOS, Lightroom, Capture One Pro, and Luminar. That computer is connected to two Drobos that house my images from the last 15 years. Many of those shots are inside Aperture "managed" libraries.

When I need to access content from one of those libraries, I simply double-click on the file container in the Finder. It will have the extension: aplibrary.

screenshot_17Aperture-Library-Original.jpg Original Aperture library.

The Mac launches Photos, and displays a Preparing Library... screen. The conversion goes at a good rate, ranging from just a few minutes to longer depending on the size of the library. Once Photos is ready with the content, it will display all of your previous Aperture images in its new interface.

iphoto-events.jpg Migrated Aperture library displayed in Photos for macOS. Notice how the original albums are displayed in the sidebar.

Your Aperture albums are retained and stored in a folder named: "iPhoto Events". From this point, you can use Photos editing tools, extensions, and all of the other goodies to manage your shots. Keep in mind that this converted library is not the System Library, rather a separate library. You can switch back and forth by quitting Photos, then holding down the Option key when relaunching the app.

Back at the Finder level, two things have happened. First, the file extension for the original Aperture library was changed to: migratedaplibrary. Then a second Photos library appears with the extension: photoslibrary. My recommendation is to archive the original library and use the new one for your current work.

migrated-library.jpg Back at the Finder level, you now have two versions of the original Aperture library.

This process is really easy, and you can move forward with your images using all of the Photos tools that I outline in my book, The Apple Photos Book for Photographers. Give it a try!

The Apple Photos Book for Photographers, 2nd Edition

Updated for macOS High Sierra, the The Apple Photos Book for Photographers, 2nd Ed. provides you with the latest tips, techniques, and workflows for Apple's photo management and editing application. Get your copy today!

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

Using the RAW Power editing extension ($13.99) with Photos for macOS can squeeze every bit of image data from your files, even a ho-hum flower shot. Here are the 3 steps I use.

original-flower-raw.jpg Original flower shot I quickly grabbed one morning on my way to work. Here's how it looked before processing in RAW Power.

raw-power-processing.jpg Decoded image in RAW Power. I used its sliders to breath life into my RAW file.

finished-image.jpg Final touches added in Photos. Once I save changes in the RAW Power editing extension, the image is automatically returned to Photos for macOS for finishing.

Because of the wonderful ecosystem that Photos offers, more users are processing their RAW files in Photos for macOS. As you can see, RAW Power is one of those affordable, powerful tools.

New Photos for macOS High Sierra Training!

Is it time for you to learn the ins and outs of the latest version of Photos? Take a look at Photos for macOS High Sierra Essential Training on LinkedIn Learning, or on lynda.com. Maximize your iPhone photography and complement the work you do with your mirrorless cameras as well. You'll love your cameras even more...

Also be sure to check out my new book, The Apple Photos Book for Photographers, 2nd Edition. It's completely up to date!

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

Airplane window photography is one of the great bonuses of travel. You already have to get there, and if you can capture a few shots along the way, all the better.

finished-airplane-shot.jpg "Pennsylvania Bridge" - Captured with an iPhone X through the plane window and processed in Luminar 2018. Photo by Derrick Story.

Just like I think that Luminar 2018 is the perfect app for drone photography, I think it's just as powerful and amazing for airplane window work.

For this image, captured with my iPhone X and automatically imported into my Photos for macOS app, I used the Luminar Editing Extension that's bundled free with the app. It's easy to use. Just click on the 3 dots at the top of the editing tools and choose Luminar 2018.

sending-to-luminar.png Sending the original image to Luminar 2018 from Photos for macOS.

I then choose the Aerial Photography Workspace in Luminar. It's a great starting point for the edits. I decided to add a couple additional Filters (Vignette and Image Radiance), then clicked the Save Changes Button to return to Photos. As you can see by the Before/After illustration below, there is a dramatic improvement to the image.

luminar-before-after.jpg The Before and After in the Luminar Editing Extension.

The workflow could not be simpler. The iPhone image was automatically uploaded to my Mac via iCloud. It was waiting for me in Photos. The Luminar Editing Extension is ready to use. I spend a minute or two improving the shot. Then the saved changes are automatically shared to all of my devices, including back to my iPhone.

Airplane Window Photography has never been easier, or more beautiful.

New Photos for macOS High Sierra Training!

Is it time for you to learn the ins and outs of the latest version of Photos? Take a look at Photos for macOS High Sierra Essential Training on LinkedIn Learning, or on lynda.com. Maximize your iPhone photography and complement the work you do with your mirrorless cameras as well. You'll love your cameras even more...

Also be sure to check out my new book, The Apple Photos Book for Photographers, 2nd Edition. It's completely up to date!

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

You could say that it's a crazy hybrid approach to art photography, but it's also convenient with great results. I've been shooting film, having the lab digitize it when it's processed, then printing the images with my inkjet printer using Photos for macOS and Red River Paper card stock. And they look different than anything I've created in the past.

Surfboards, Maui "Surfboards, Maui" Scanned version - Contax 159MM, Zeiss 28-70mm, Kodak ColorPlus 200 film. Photo by Derrick Story.

The workflow is easy. I shoot the film (which is fun in itself) then send it off to the lab for processing and scanning. I don't get lab prints, just the negatives and the scans.

Once everything comes back from the lab, I look at the negatives on a light table. I do this for a couple reasons. First, I can really tell how well I did by looking at the film under the loupe. It's just me, celluloid, and optics. I also check for light leaks and other potential issues that I might need to be aware of with how the camera is working.

I then look at the scans. This is the fun part for me, because it's my first viewing of the images in positive format. As with any film project, sometimes I'm happy, sometimes I'm sad.

I tend not fiddle around with the images much in post production. I want to retain as much of their raw analog quality as possible. If I do have to touch them up, I can use the editing tools in Photos for macOS, or the Luminar 2018 editing extension. Lots of power with these options, and they keep me in my easy workflow.

Then it's time to print. I've been using Red River Paper Matte Card Stock for the output. It's beautiful paper that comes scored, making it easy to fold to 5"x7" finished size. I also purchase my envelopes for the cards at RRP.

surfboads-printed-1024.jpg "Surfboards, Maui" Printed version using Red River Paper card stock and Photos for macOS with an inexpensive Canon wireless printer. Image by Derrick Story.

In my book, The Apple Photos Book for Photographers, 2nd Edition, I explain how to use the Card tool in Photos to generate your own fine art greeting cards. All of your work is saved as a project in Photos, so you can go back anytime and pick up where you left off, or print more cards.

For my printer, I used an inexpensive Canon PIXMA Wireless Photo Printer ($69) that couldn't be easier to operate.

As for the final product, these cards look different than anything I've created before. The combination of analog film with modern inkjet technology is truly unique. And the fact that I can manage the entire effort in Photos for macOS keeps it all so very simple.

New Photos for macOS High Sierra Training!

Is it time for you to learn the ins and outs of the latest version of Photos? Take a look at Photos for macOS High Sierra Essential Training on LinkedIn Learning, or on lynda.com. Maximize your iPhone photography and complement the work you do with your mirrorless cameras as well. You'll love your cameras even more...

Also be sure to check out my new book, The Apple Photos Book for Photographers, 2nd Edition. It's completely up to date!

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

Photos for macOS is a terrific app for managing videos captured with iPhones and mirrorless cameras. You have organizing features such as albums, keywords, and location data. Plus it has a few tricks up its sleeve, such as exporting single frames from your movies as Tiffs.

Given the high quality of our video capture these days, this is a reasonable approach for publishing photographs online. In fact, the image I used with this week's TDS podcast was snagged from an iPhone video. Here's how it works.

Export a single frame as a photo from Photos for macOS High Sierra Essential Training by Derrick Story

Photos sends the Tiff file to your Pictures folder. From there you can retrieve it and open it in an app such as Preview, or import it back into Photos. It's really a handy feature that I find myself using more and more.

export-frame-as-photo.png

New Photos for macOS High Sierra Training!

Is it time for you to learn the ins and outs of the latest version of Photos? Take a look at Photos for macOS High Sierra Essential Training on LinkedIn Learning, or on lynda.com. Maximize your iPhone photography and complement the work you do with your mirrorless cameras as well. You'll love your cameras even more...

Also be sure to check out my new book, The Apple Photos Book for Photographers, 2nd Edition. It's completely up to date!

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.

When you open a Live Photo in Photos for macOS High Sierra, you have a number of creative possibilities. With that original content, you can create an animated GIF or simulate a long exposure, such as with water. I show you how to tap this resource in this movie.

Apply Live Photo effects from Photos for macOS High Sierra Essential Training by Derrick Story

Live Photo adds yet another creative possibility to iPhone photography. Learn about it, and so many more things, in my Photos for macOS High Sierra Essential Training.

live-photos.png

New Photos for macOS High Sierra Training!

Is it time for you to learn the ins and outs of the latest version of Photos? Take a look at Photos for macOS High Sierra Essential Training on LinkedIn Learning, or on lynda.com. Maximize your iPhone photography and complement the work you do with your mirrorless cameras as well. You'll love your cameras even more...

Also be sure to check out my new book, The Apple Photos Book for Photographers, 2nd Edition. It's completely up to date!

You can share your thoughts at the TDS Facebook page, where I'll post this story for discussion.