Obviously, Apple hit a home run when it invented the album concept. Let's face it: If there were a Billboard Top Software-Features Hits chart, the iPhoto albums feature would have been number one for months on end.
Albums may have become too popular, however. It wasn't long before iPhoto fans discovered that their long list of albums had outgrown the height of the Source list. As a result, people grew desperate for some way to organize albums within albums, to create subfolders somehow.
Apple's response in iPhoto 5 consisted of one word: "folders."
If you choose File New Folder, iPhoto promptly creates a new, folder-shaped icon in the Source list called "untitled folder." (Type a name for it and then press Return or Enter.) Its sole purpose in life is to contain other Source-list iconsalbums, smart albums, saved slideshow icons, book layouts, and so on. Figure 7-9 shows the details.
What's really nice about folders is that they can also contain other folders. That is, iPhoto is capable of more than a two-level hierarchy; you can actually create folders within folders within folders within folders, also as shown in Figure 7-9.
Otherwise, folders work exactly like albums. You rename them the same way, drag them up and down the Source list the same way, delete them the same way, and duplicate them the same way.
Clearly, the people have spoken.
Tip: If you've nested a folder within a folder by accident , no problem. You can easily drag it back out again. Just drag the folder upward until it's just below the Last Rolls icons in the Source listwatch the black horizontal line that shows where you areand then release the mouse.
7.6. Smart Albums
Albums, as you now know, are the primary organizational tool in iPhoto. Since the dawn of iPhoto, you've had to create them yourself, one at a timeby clicking the + button beneath the Source list, for example, and then filling up the album by dragging photo thumbnails.
iPhoto, though, can fill up albums for you, thanks to smart albums . These are self-updating folders that always display pictures according to certain criteria that you set upall pictures with "Aunt Edna" in the comments, for example, or all photos that you've rated four stars or higher. (If you've ever used smart playlists in iTunes, you'll recognize the idea immediately.)
To create a smart album, choose File New Smart Album (Option- -N), or Option-click the + button below the Source list. Either way, the Smart Album sheet slides down from the top of the window (Figure 7-10).
The controls here are designed to set up a search of your Photo Library. Figure 7-10 illustrates how to find pictures that you took in the first two months of 2005but only those that have four- or five-star ratings and mention your friend Casey in the title or comments.
Click the + button to add a new criterion row to be even more specific about which photos you want iPhoto to include in the smart album. Use the first pop-up menu to choose a type of photo feature (keyword or date, for example) and the second pop-up menu to tell iPhoto whether you want to match it ("is"), eliminate it ("is not"), and so on. The third part of the criterion row is another pop-up menu or a search field where you finally tell iPhoto what to look for.
When you click OK, your smart album is ready to show off. When you click its name in the Source list (it has a little gear icon), the main window displays the thumbnails of the photos that match your criteria. The best part is that iPhoto will keep this album updated whenever your collection changesas you change your ratings, as you take new photos, and so on.
Tip: To change or review the parameters for a smart album, click its icon in the list and then choose Photos Get Info ( -I). The Smart Album sheet reappears.