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Quickly Assess Photos Using Star Ratings

Photos Workbench seamlessly integrates with Apple Photos, providing powerful tools to help you organize, name, and compare your photos. The star rating system is one of the most effective tools in this suite.

The Importance of Star Ratings

Star ratings are invaluable for organizing and culling your photos and videos. They help you identify your best shots and classify images by relative quality or relevance, with ratings ranging from 1 star (worst) to 5 stars (best).

By rating your photos, you can streamline your library by removing the poor shots. This process makes deciding which pictures to share, publish, or print easier. Once your photos are classified, finding specific images becomes a breeze. Browsing your library to rekindle memories is also much more enjoyable when you can focus on the ★★★★ and ★★★★★ images.

Making the Process Enjoyable

While rating photos is an excellent opportunity to revisit memories, it can also be tedious work.

Assuming a 5-star rating is reserved for your best shots—those worthy of National Geographic—it should be relatively easy to identify them at first sight.

That would leave the 4-star rating for the best shots in the current album. However, determining the best photos without constantly comparing them can be challenging. The same holds for the 3-star rating for the best shots in a series of similar photos.

Assigning a rating can feel arbitrary. Would you give the same photo the same rating if you rechecked it the next day?

A structured workflow can simplify the process of assessing the relative quality of your photos.

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Find Photos by Star Rating

Photos Workbench helps you easily rate, find, and cull your photos and videos, making your Apple Photos library more organized and manageable.

Rate Your Photos with Ease

Photos Workbench allows you to rate your photos and videos on a scale from 1 to 5 stars. While the exact meaning of each rating is up to personal preference, here is one suggested interpretation:

  • No star – Unrated. Still needs reviewing
  • ★ (1 Star) – Rejected. Marked for deletion
  • ★★ (2 Stars) – Keep without adjustments. May have emotional value
  • ★★★ (3 stars) – Okay. Invest time into adjustments
  • ★★★★ (4 stars) – Good. Worth sharing
  • ★★★★★ (5 Stars)- Fantastic. Worth printing

Regardless of how you choose to use the star ratings, the better photos always get the higher rating. Thus, Photos Workbench offers filters allowing you to see items above a particular rating. For example, to see the standout shots of a given album, you can filter to show items rated “★★★★ or better.”

Filter Photos by Star Rating: 4-Star or Better
Filter Photos by Star Rating: 4-Star or Better

What if you wanted to see only photos with a specific rating?

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Filter Photos by Keywords

In Photos Workbench, keyword palettes and keyboard shortcuts make it particularly easy to assign keywords to your photos. Photos Workbench can filter albums by keywords, allowing you to find or focus on a specific set of images.

Along with albums, keywords help you organize your images. Typically, albums group photos by event. Keywords are labels that describe the subject of a photo or properties of the photo. Examples: “Family”, “Landscape”, …, “Still-Life”, “Action”, …

Keywords can also be used to flag images you intend to work with or export. For instance, you can assign the keyword “Share” to all the photos you plan to add to the family’s shared album.

Favorite Keywords Palette
Favorite Keywords: Organize your pictures and flag those that you intend to share

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