Beyond iPhoto

If you’re serious about digital photographs, iPhoto’s tools by themselves aren’t going to cut it. You’ll have to spring for a more full-featured image-editing program, such as Adobe Photoshop, Photoshop Elements, Canvas, GraphicConverter, or a similar program.

Photoshop is by far the most popular tool for the job, but at about $600, it’s also one of the most expensive. Unless you intend to perform sophisticated image-editing and compositing (sandwiching together parts of different photos into one image), save yourself some money and buy Photoshop Elements. It’s a trimmed-down version of Photoshop with all the basic image-editing stuff and just enough of the high-end features. It costs less than $100, and a free trial version is available online. (Your digital camera may even have come with Photoshop Elements right in the box.)

Before you go software shopping, though, check out your own hard drive. If you bought your Mac recently, you may already have the image-editing software you need. Apple includes GraphicConverter—a simple but powerful editing program with Photoshop-like tools—on some Mac models.

In any case, these programs offer tools that iPhoto lacks: sharpness controls, saturation adjustment, color correction, and so on.

Opening Photos in Other Programs

To open a photo in a “real” editing program, first open that program so that its icon appears in the Dock. Then drag a thumbnail from iPhoto’s window directly onto the program icon. (Of course, you can also drag ...

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