Using Photos Faces

The Photos app lets you easily identify faces in your photos. You can assign a name and Photos will help you find that person in other pictures. Once you have assigned some faces, you can search for them and view photos that contain those people.
Video Transcript / Captions
Closed captioning for this video is available on YouTube: Using Photos Faces.

Hi, this is Gary with On today's episode let's look at using the Faces feature in Photos.

So I'm here now in El Capitan and I'm using Photos version 1.2. I've imported some ClipArt photos showing some people in them. Now let's see how we add Faces to these. It's really easy.

There isn't a particular thing you need to do. Just look at the photo and you will see that faces are automatically recognized but doesn't know who they are so it just puts unnamed under them. It also gives you these circles around them so you see exactly what the photos app is looking at.

Let's go ahead and name this guy. We'll name him Guy and we'll hit return there. If we go to the next photo we see right now it thinks well hey this seems to be the same guy so Is this Guy? I have the ability to say no it's not or yes it is. Now I can go through others and if that person appears somewhere else they will also be added.

So let's go and add somebody else here. Let's go ahead and add Gus here. So now if we go to the next photo here we can see there is Gus again but it hasn't identified him. It only has the one image to go on so it's not enough information for it to pick him out here. So I start typing again and I only need to type a few letters and can now pick from a list. It even shows me a little picture there of what I'm doing and now Gus is identified here and also, if I go back, there. So this will make it better for identifying this person in future photos because it has more information.

So basically you start off kind of rough adding the same people a few times and then it gets better and better at picking out people.

So here I've added another face and I'm going to see if it identifies it anywhere else. I go forward and I see it hasn't here so I'll give it this one and if I go to this photo here not only hasn't it identified this face but it doesn't even know it's a face because, of course, the kid is upside down. So how can I manually add it.

I can go to Info here and I can Add Faces. Once I do that it basically creates this circle here that is in the middle of nowhere. I can resize it, move it around, and now I can add the name there. So I can do that. Now if I were to click away there I can see the faces are assigned here. So I can go back to these other photos there and I can see that I've got that same kid added here and here.

I can also get rid of a face if I want. Say somebody is in the photo that I don't know. This happens a lot when you take crowd photos. You take a picture of somebody and there are other people standing behind them you don't know. You can use this X button here to get rid of that face. So that is pretty easy to do.

You can also click here and it will take you to the list of all the places where that person appears. So that's there. You can also go into Faces here under Albums and it will show you all the faces you've identified in any photos and you can go into that and see all those photos for that one person. You can go to just showing you the Photos or the Faces which is really good, I find, for finding things say to use as your profile pick in Facebook or Twitter. You can look yourself up and you can find a really good shot of yourself and then go to that particular photo and crop it around there and use that.

I love the fact that you can then search with names of faces. So I can search for Guy and it shows me those two results there and I can jump right to it. Better still I've gone in here and I've also named this woman right here and I've named her in these two photos. So now when I go and do a search I can search for both names like that. You can see it comes up with the same two photos since they are in both. But this is really useful, for instance, for an anniversary and you want to find pictures of yourself and your spouse. You can search for pictures that have both of you in them and maybe quickly find something nice to post.

So those are the basics. But what if you have a ton of photos and you're just getting started adding faces to them. Well, if you go to Faces here and you can see these faces that I've tagged so far. But also you see suggested faces here at the bottom. So you can select a face and add that name and it shows you that one photo was added by you and one photo was added automatically.

So now I can find out which ones were added automatically. I can go in here and view these photos here and check to make sure that it was added correctly. It did add it correctly there.

I can go back to Faces and continue to do that to go in and take care of these suggested faces here. I can also Control click on one and say ignore this face. Again useful for when you capture people that are in a crowd or standing behind people you know. You can just say forget about that one and it will remove that one from the photo so you don't have to bother with it again.

So basically your goal, if you want to have everything set for Faces in your photos collection, is to go through all of these until they are all cleared out. Either you assigned a name to them or you've set them to ignore and then you have all your faces up here. You can easily access them. You can search them and you can just view them as an album. Then, of course, if you are using the iCloud Photo Library this will translate to all of your devices.

Comments: 10 Responses to “Using Photos Faces”

    3 years ago

    Is it possible to globally change a name once you have started assigning the name to a particular face? I.e. as your file builds you have a second person with the same first name so you want to add a last initial to both.

      3 years ago

      Yes. Just click on Faces on the left. Then click and edit any name.

    3 years ago

    hi Gary, coming str8 to the point i don’t see the faces option to choose on my photos app. am i missing something.
    thank u for your valuable time

      3 years ago

      Which version of OS X are you using? Which version of Photos?

    John Vertolli
    3 years ago

    Hi Gary, can I add to viewers, from the find faces page, suggested faces, you can drag and drop suggested faces to the ones you have listed on top. This makes the process of identifying faces much quicker.

      3 years ago

      Not sure what you are asking. You can definitely drag and drop from Suggested Faces to the faces on top. Did you try it?

    Cindy Nunn
    3 years ago

    I don’t see a “Faces” album on my iPhone 6 either. I do, however, on my iMac. How do I check the Photos app version on my iPhone 6?

      3 years ago

      You don’t need to check the Photos version, just the iOS version. Make sure you are running the latest. But you won’t see Faces on your iPhone unless you are using iCloud Photo library to share your library between your iPhone and Mac.

    Jeff Widen
    3 years ago

    If I want to use a photo in another venue, say, for example a email, does the photo transfer with the names on it? If so, how do I remove the names before the transfer?

      3 years ago

      No, the names of the Faces are part of your Photos database. When you attach a photo to an email, you are basically exporting it out of Photos so you just get the photo and the basic metadata (location, image data etc). Try it.

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