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Organizing a Library Using Faces

Now that you know where your images were taken, you’d also like to know who is in them. Faces is an Aperture feature that not only detects human faces in images (not dogs or cats), but it can also recognize the same face throughout your library.

Using Faces View

Like Places, Faces can be applied to an entire library or only a single project. You can choose which by using the Faces view in the Library inspector, or as in this exercise, clicking the Faces button in the toolbar.

  1. In the Library inspector, select the Catherine Hall Studios project.
  2. In the toolbar, click the Faces button.

    Aperture opens the Faces view, which is initially displayed as an empty corkboard with a special filmstrip view at the bottom of the window. The thumbnails are zoomed into each face that Aperture detects in the project images. The next step is to assign names to those faces, which will add them to the corkboard area. Let’s focus on finding all the photos of the bride and groom in this wedding.

  3. On the first image in the filmstrip view, click the label to ready it for text entry.
  4. Type Cathy and press Return.
  5. The next image in the Browser is selected and ready for naming; type Ron and press Return.

Confirming and Rejecting Matches

The corkboard is the place where any face that is detected and given a name is displayed. Each image on the corkboard represents one or more photos that depict that person.

  1. Double-click the Cathy image located on the corkboard.

    Double-clicking an image on the corkboard displays the confirmed images of that person. Images are displayed in the lower part of the window that Aperture believes may also contain that person.

    You’ll need to confirm or reject the images on the lower part of the window. Let’s zoom in to make it easier to identify which faces Aperture thinks are similar to Cathy.

  2. At the bottom of the window, click Faces to zoom into the face in the photo that Aperture thinks could be Cathy.

    Because these are all images of Cathy, you’ll confirm them.

  3. Click Confirm Faces.
  4. Click the first image in the bottom half of the window to highlight it.

    A green highlight indicates that this image will be confirmed as Cathy when you click Done. Let’s find a faster way to confirm the remaining images.

  5. Drag a selection rectangle around the four remaining images.
  6. Click Done. Now you can confirm the photos with the groom in them.
  7. Click the All Faces button.
  8. Double-click Ron.
  9. Click the Faces button to zoom in. Because all these images show Ron, you’ll confirm them all.
  10. Click Confirm Faces.
  11. Drag a selection rectangle around the four unconfirmed images.
  12. Click Done.

    By confirming more images, Aperture has more angles, lighting, and facial expressions to evaluate, giving a better idea of what Ron looks like in multiple situations. After reanalyzing the remaining photos, Aperture identifies with more photos that may contain Ron. The first two are Ron, but the third and fifth images are not.

  13. Click Confirm Faces.
  14. Click once on the first two images.
  15. Click twice on the third image to mark it as Not Ron.
  16. Click the next image to confirm it.
  17. Click the fifth image twice to reject this image. It’s actually Cathy.
  18. Click the last image to confirm it, then click Done.
  19. Click the All Faces button to return to the Faces view.

    You could continue confirming and rejecting faces as Ron, but you get the idea. The recognition isn’t infallible, so prepare to find some misidentifications. However, Aperture can be incredibly helpful overall at quickly finding images of important people in your library.

Adding a Name to a Face

You can also use the Name button to add names to faces. In some cases, faces may be detected but—because of lighting, aging, or the way a head is tilted—the face may not be recognized as one of the people you’ve already identified. You can click the Name button to link the face with the appropriate name.

  1. In the toolbar, click the Browser button, or press V until the Browser is displayed.
  2. Double-click the first image in the Browser, 2009-09-26 at 10-23-34.
  3. In the toolbar, click the Name button.
  4. A face label is displayed as unnamed. Type Cathy in the face label. Before you complete the name, Cathy’s ID will appear in the list.
  5. From the list, choose Cathy to assign the name, then click Done.

Adding Missed Faces

On occasion, your subjects won’t be looking into the camera, so Aperture may not find their faces. Yet, you still may want to identify them in the shot. Aperture has a way for you to manually identify a face and assign a name.

  1. In the toolbar, click the Browser button, or press V until the Browser is displayed.
  2. Scroll the Browser until you see the image 2009-09-26 at 12-44-41.
  3. Double-click the image to display it in the Viewer.
  4. In the toolbar, click the Name button.

    As you can see, Aperture found Ron’s face but not Cathy’s because she is facing away from the camera. You can add Cathy so this photo shows up when you search for her.

  5. In the dialog, click the Add Missing Face button.
  6. Drag the rectangle to position it over Cathy’s head.
  7. In the face label, begin typing Cathy.

    Cathy’s name and picture are displayed.

  8. From the list, choose Cathy to assign her name to the image. Click Done. This image is added to the collection of Cathy photos.
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