How to Use the Photos App on a Mac?

Photos is a smart and helpful application that lets you keep your media library accessible and organized. Make your photos perfect with the intuitive and powerful tools for editing. Your favorite images are sorted out to build up wonderful collections in Memories. Photo Library in iCloud will help you to safely store the most precious of your media files on the servers of iCloud while keeping them updated on all of your Apple devices.

Before you get started:

  • Get the latest update of MacOS on your device.
  • Upgrade the apps Aperture and iPhoto to the more recent application Photos.
photo sharing mac os


Use iCloud to store and access your images from any of your devices

With the help of the Photo Library in iCloud, you can store all photos in the iCloud storage, and access them anytime on any of your Apple devices, including iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Mac, Apple TV, through the website iCloud com, or on your PC. Your edits done in the app Photos are kept updated and visible on all synced Apple devices.

Managing the storage in iCloud

Media files (videos and photos) that are stored in the Photo Library on iCloud use its storage. Make sure to have enough storage space for your media collection before turning on the

iCloud Photo Library. Upgrade to another storage plan if needed.

Turning on the Photo Library in iCloud

To turn on the Photo Library in iCloud, go to Settings; also, remember to use the same Apple ID, to sign in on all of your Apple devices. On Mac computer, open System Preferences, go to the section iCloud, next click the button Options which stands next to the Photos. Choose iCloud Photo Library.

Keeping the media library organized

The app Photos gets organized the same familiar way on all Apple devices that you use. On a Mac, the media collection gets separated into four basic categories: the main one – Library, as well as Albums, Projects, and Shared.

The app Photos automatically sorts the images, videos, People, Favorites, Memories in your Library. Videos and photos taken around same place and time will be grouped as Moments, Collections and Years. You can find the images that you’ve shared with others in the folder Photo Sharing in iCloud, the section Shared. You can get a collection organized in Albums. View to order merchandise production (books, cards, prints, etc.) in Projects.

What else to do with the app Photos

The app Photos offers an easy and fun process of creating a slideshow which you can share instantly with anyone. Find and select the best moments of it quickly.

Playing a slideshow

You can create a slideshow right in the app Photos. First, open one of your albums and click the section Slideshow. Choose one of the themes and add music. That’s it.

Alternatively, you can open one of the sections – Year, Collection or Moment, and click Play Button.

Share your photos

Click Share icon to easily share your images through the Mail, Photo Sharing in iCloud or more. Also, you can send the photos through your accounts on social media, including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and others.

Select several photos

With the help of Photos, you can select multiple videos and images in the library easily. Click on several items to select them, and see the number in the right upper corner of the tab. You can move the selected items into other albums, delete them, hide, view info, etc.

Search the photos

mac os sierra photos search

Find any image or video in your library easily. Simply use the built-in search bar in the app Photos. Also, you can search for images based on what is or who is in them (e.g., cake, birthday, presents, etc.).

Up in the right corner of the app, you can find a filter to apply to your search. After clicking on Showing, you’ll be able to choose among Photos, Videos, Edited or Favorites.

Deletion of videos and images from the library

It is easy to delete one or several images or videos that you don’t need anymore.

Deleting one image

  • Choose a photo and click on it.
  • Press the key Delete.
  • In a notification, confirm the deletion of a photo.

Deleting multiple images

  • Press the key Command and hold it down.
  • Select the group of images that you’d like to delete.
  • Press the key Delete.
  • In a notification, confirm the deletion of the photos.

Once you’ve deleted an image, it’s moved to an album called Recently Deleted and is stored there for the next 30 days. If you use the Photo Library in iCloud, the deleted images are replaced to the album Recently Deleted on all of your synced Apple devices. In 30 days, such images are deleted by Photos permanently. To delete the photos permanently at once (this also helps to save more disk space), click the button Delete All in the album Recently Deleted. Press the shortcut Command-Delete to delete the photos both from the collection and an album at once.

Editing the photos

The app Photos offers you user-friendly and powerful tools for editing the media files. Adjust a photo and save the result. Revert to the original and start the editing over. Follow these steps:

  • From an album or a view in the Photos, click twice on an image you’d like to edit.
  • Up in the right corner press Edit icon.
  • On the right, you’ll see the tools for editing appear. Click the tool you need.

Having edited an image, click the button Done. Click the button Revert to Original, to start the process over. The edits will be visible on all synced devices, with the Photo Library in iCloud.

The Photos app in High Sierra lets you send an image for editing to other third-party apps, and save the edits in the library.

Add and view information about an image

photos info mac os

You can add information about a photo, such as keywords, location, description, etc. Add Faces, to appoint particular people in the images.

To open the window of Information, open a photo by clicking it twice; next, press photos info icon up in the right corner. Alternatively, you can select an image and press a shortcut Command-I. Having edited information, you can search for an image by title, description, location, faces or keywords through the Search bar.