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So far as we have worked with albums and folders, we have manually added the contents to them, but iPhoto gives you another very nice tool, and that's Smart Albums, where we can set some parameters for an album and then iPhoto will add the images for us. It's a very handy tool. You can use it to help you search things to pull collections of things together and you will see that there are all sorts of criteria to choose from. So let's make one right now. I'm going to go down to the plus symbol which when we Click on it normally like this, we have the option of Album, Smart Album, Web Gallery and so forth. So we could choose Smart Album right here, although I do want to show you one little shortcut. I'm going to Cancel, I'm going to hold down the Option key and then Click on it and you can go directly to creating a Smart Album. So you have your choice of going either route. I'm going to Cancel this again. You can just Click on the regular plus symbol if you want and then choose the Smart Album option from the list, or you can hold down the Option key. Either way it works very well. I want to make a Smart Album for all the photos that I have shot so far in 2007. We'll call it, low on behold, 2007 Pictures. Very logical. See the logic just creeping through here. So I'm going to go down here and now here are all these criteria that I was referring to earlier, and a Filename, Events, Descriptions, I'm going to choose Date, and date is after. We'll fill in here January 1, 2007. So what this Smart Album is going to do is going to look through my entire iPhoto library for all the photos that are time stamped after 01/01/2007, this is going to create an album and then it's going to put all those photos in there. Click ok.
Here is my Smart Album, and then look at all the photos right here. These were all captured during 2007 and I can double check that by just Clicking on any image going down to the Information box saying this is captured in September of 2007, September of 2007. Here is one from May of 2007, but they are all 2007 images. If I go up to photos here, you go well may be all the images in your library were from 2007. That's not true, we have images from before 2007 and I'll go right up here. Look at this right here, ah! 2006! And you will notice it is not in our Smart Album for 2007 pictures. Now if you want to change the criteria for your Smart Album, it's very simple. You can just Control+Click or Right-Click the album, choose Edit Smart Album. And you can change the criteria on to something else. Now if I want to add another condition, all I have to do is Click on the plus button and I can choose let's say any text, contains will be really tricky here, CR2. Now the Smart Album will consist of photos that were taken after January 1, 2007 and that's somewhere in the text, they have this file extension, I Click OK. Now the contents have changed to just photos that have .cr2 in the file extension. You notice that some of the other shots for instance the portraits that were in there previously, even though they were taken in 2007, there is no text that has .cr2, so now they are excluded from the Smart Album. Again just like regular albums these are only virtual copies of your photos, they are only aliases. You can delete the Smart Album. You can change the criteria. You can do whatever you want and you are only working with virtual copies of the images. Everything remains intact and safe in your iPhoto library. All you are doing is creating collections in different ways for looking at the images in your iPhoto library. So Smart Album is a very helpful tool and you can use it to help you search and pull together special collections for special uses, very handy, very powerful. I recommend that you give it a try.
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