The first version of iPhoto for iOS was very much the junior partner when compared to iPhoto for the Mac. However, iPhoto version 2.0 for iOS has definitely grown up and started to do its own thing. As you can see, the program's interface has had a major redesign that more closely follows the graphical style of iOS 7 itself. Version 2.0 also gained a number of new effects that you can apply to your photos. In fact, it probably outdoes the Mac version in this area now, so that's what we'll look at in this tutorial.
Select a photo that you want to work with, then just tap on the Effects icon in the toolbar that runs along the bottom of the screen. Version 2.0 of iPhoto for iOS gets rid of the old 'swatch' that was used to display effects, and displays this straightforward set of thumbnail previews. There are a number of new effects in this version, including the new camera effects that were introduced with iOS 7, which means that you can edit photos that already use those effects. There are new black-and-white effects, and a new set of Drama effects that we'll tap and select now.
A little strip of thumbnail previews for the Drama effects is now displayed right underneath our photo. If you're new to the iOS version of iPhoto then it's worth tapping the '?' in the toolbar at the top of the screen in order to see the tool tips for these effects. The tip just above the thumbnails tells us that you can drag your finger across the thumbnails in order to emphasize different colours within the photo. And, importantly, there's another big tip right in the centre of the screen that explains how we can further fine-tune this effect.
If I drag my finger across the strip of effects thumbnails at the bottom of the screen I can see that the ones on the right tend to boost skin tones, while the ones on the left boost other colours, such as this couple’s clothing. I’ll pick an effect that boosts their skin tones a little, but I think some of the other colours are also looking a bit pale. Fortunately, iPhoto allows us to fine-tune the colours within the image quite accurately. If I tap and hold my finger on the guy’s blue shirt another set of controls will appear.
With these controls visible, you can move your finger left or right across the screen to adjust the tone of the entire image. However, you can also adjust specific colours more selectively by tapping on a particular colour – such as the blue shirt – and then moving your finger up or down to lighten or darken just that one colour. Let’s darken that shirt a little, along with some of the other clothing colours, just to make them look a bit bolder. I’ve also darkened the sea in the background to add a bit more contrast and pick out a little more detail.
You can experiment with iPhoto’s effects quite freely, as it’s easy to undo any changes that you don’t like. You can use the Undo command – the bent-over arrow in the top toolbar – to step back through your changes one at a time, or open the Options menu in the bottom-right corner in order to completely remove any changes made with this particular effect. Up in the top-right corner of the toolbar there’s also an icon that looks a bit like two squares side-by-side. You can tap on this icon to quickly switch back and forth between the original image and the current version in order to compare them.
Effects in iPhoto are ‘non-destructive’, which means that the original photo is always preserved for you. So if you get a bit carried away it is always possible to discard all the editing changes that you have made – including cropping, brush strokes and other enhancements – and revert to the original, untouched photo. However, the Revert command that does this for you is hidden away in another menu. You need to tap the Browser icon in the lower-right corner of the screen to in order to deactivate all the editing tools, and then tap on the Options menu in the right-hand corner.
Most of iPhoto’s effects work in a similar fashion, allowing you to select variations on a basic effect by using the thumbnail previews at the bottom of the screen, and then fine-tuning the effect by tapping and sliding your finger on the image itself. However, there is one annoying limitation in the way that these effects work. You can only apply one effect at a time, so if we try to add this grainy texture effect to our photo we can see that our earlier Drama effect disappears and that all the colour changes we made have been discarded.
There is a way around this, but it’s rather clumsy. If you want to apply multiple effects to a photo then you have to use the Share menu to send this photo to the Camera Roll on your iPad or iPhone. This saves a copy of your edited photo onto the Camera Roll and leaves the original photo in whichever album it was originally stored in. The Camera Roll is treated as a separate album by iPhoto, so you have to leave this editing window and return to the ‘Albums’ viewing mode where you can open the Camera Roll album and select the new copy of this photo.
This copy of our photo has the darker clothing colours that we added using the Drama effect, but iPhoto treats it as a completely new photo and ignores any effects that we may have added before. This means that we can now select that texture effect and apply it without losing the Drama effect again. That’s a bit of a hassle, but one timesaving option here is the ability to copy the effect that you add to one photo and then instantly paste it onto another photo. So, if we adjust this texture effect to add a grainy border to one photo we can then use exactly the same effect with any other photo we choose.