How to Use the Photos App to Edit Your Pictures

photo app, photo editing

Photos, the photo management and editing app on a MacBook and iPhone can help you manage and edit your pictures. Professionals prefer Photoshop and other photo editing tools, but for an average customer, Photos does a pretty decent job.

Let’s find out how to make the most out of the Photos application for your picture editing needs.

Most of these are simple editing tasks that you can carry out without needing to delve into too many technical details.

On your Mac

To start editing a photo, click on the thumbnail twice, and then you will see an option to ‘Edit’ it in the menu bar. You will then have access to the following options:

  • Zoom into a photo or zoom out of it
  • Adjust the photo’s settings like the brightness, exposure, and more
  • Slap a filter on the photo to make it look more aesthetic
  • Rotate a photo to make it landscape or portrait
  • Use the Auto Enhance feature to color correct your photo and to adjust its brightness

If you do not want to go through the full technical know-how of what exposure means or what changing the saturation does to a photo, the Auto Enhance feature can be pretty much a lifesaver. You can also learn how to resize an image on mac if you need a specific size or need to reduce the file size when uploading it online.

Duplicate a photo to keep the original

In case you would like to keep the original photo as is and create a new version of it, before you start editing your photo, make a copy of it. You can do this easily on Photos by choosing the photo you want to copy and then Image -> Duplicate 1 Photo.

See a before/after of the editing

Want to see what your image looked like before you edited it? One way is to have the original and edited version opened side by side. In the Photos app, you can press down the M key and hold it to see the original version and let go to see the edited version. You can go back and forth a few times to soak in the differences.

Paste your settings to other pictures

If you are trying to create a cohesive style or an album of sorts, you may want to have the same editing style across all your photos. Instead of looking for a dedicated app for editing, you can use Photos too. You can copy all your adjusted settings to other photos very easily.

Open the photo that you edited, and then go to Edit in the menu bar. Under Image, choose Copy Adjustments. Now select the item that you want to edit the same way. Under Image, you will now see a Paste Adjustments option. Choose that, and you will see your settings copied onto this image as well. You can also do this one at a time, unfortunately, so if you have hundreds of pictures, this will take a while.

On your iPhone

You can do pretty much everything on your iPhone that you can do on your Mac as far as the Photos application goes. We will go into some detail with a few of the options we already talked about.

Tweak the light and color of your picture

Click on the photo you want to edit, and you will see the three options to fix Exposure, Brilliance, and Highlights. Tap each one of them to move the slider left or right. Once you are happy with the change, you can move onto the next option. If you want to see the previous version, long tap the photo to see the unedited version.

Once you are happy with all the changes, tap ‘Done’ to save your photo. If you don’t like the edits, you can always go back to the original photo by reverting to the original version.

Crop, rotate or flip images

These basic edits can be made right on your smartphone without needing an additional editing app.

Let’s get into it. Once you click ‘Edit’, you will have access to these options.

You can either crop your picture manually or use a preset ratio to crop your image.

Rotating helps you turn your picture by 90 degrees. You can keep clicking this till you’re happy with the new orientation.

Flip images if you want to create a mirror mode. You can set up a mirror mode if you are on iOS 14 and above by going into your settings and toggling on “Mirror Front Photos”. If you are on an older OS, then you can do it after clicking the photo using the Flip function.

Straighten your pictures

Don’t worry if you take a picture that is not lined up. You can fix it later through the Photos app by using the straighten feature. You can also adjust the vertical and horizontal perspective to make it even better.

To sum up

You do not need to pay for software to edit your photos necessarily. For the everyday person, the Photos app is more than enough to help you edit your photos to your satisfaction.

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