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Beginning Mac: Find and Email a Photo in My iPhoto Library

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My very frustrated wife called me today to ask how to send a photo that she had imported to iPhoto ’08. She was frustrated that she couldn’t find the actual file so she could attach it to an email. The iPhoto Library sits on our external drive (you can choose where your library is located by holding down alt/option while opening iPhoto). This is what she got when she tried to find the photo she wanted to send:

She understood that her photos were in the iPhoto Library because it was such a large file. I told her to right-click the iPhoto library and select “Show Package Contents,” which is what you could do if you were just in Finder. But you can’t do that when you are trying to attach a photo to your Gmail message.

The easiest way to do it is also the most intuitive. When you have the “Open” dialogue box open, simply drag the photo from your iPhoto library to that box, and it will guide you to that event’s folder, and select the image that you dragged to the dialogue box.

After you do this, you can click “Open” and it will attach to your message.

If you are using, you can just drag a photo to the application icon and it will create a new message with that picture attached. If the message is already open, you simply drag the pictures you want to attach to the message window, and it will attach them.

16 Responses to “Beginning Mac: Find and Email a Photo in My iPhoto Library”

  1. Cassandra Lee

    Thanks you guys! This website was SO helpful! And thank you Jeff, for your comment, which really helped me figure out my problem. Thanks everyone! And happy holidays to you all!

  2. Does anyone know why when you attach a photo this way the size of the photo is small? Everytime I do this, the photo is about 56KB and not high quality.

    Is there any way to select the size of the photo which is being attached – it just seems to default to a small size.

  3. I don’t know why people keep complaining about this. When you’re looking to upload/send a photo somewhere, there is a Media option in the left hand column. Simply select Photos and you can browse through your iPhoto library that way.


  4. For GMail copying and anything else where I’m sending the photo, I just drag it from the iPhoto browser onto the desktop. It creates a full copy of the image to where I can find it super easy, then I just delete that desktop picture once it is sent.

    Easy peasy!

  5. Or, in iPhoto, select the photo(s) you want to email, and click the email icon at the bottom right – a new message will be created containing the photos (this solution works for Mail or Entourage, not web based email)


  6. I’m not sure if Jeff is describing this same thing, but in any File I/O window, like the one you get with the attach button in a New Message window, just scroll down the sources list along the left to the MEDIA section, select Photos, and then you can browse thumbnails of your iPhoto library and its albums.

    Very handy for using the (free and quick) multiple file upload from Flickr (although it sadly doesn’t work at all in Safari 3).

  7. Or you could click the “photo browser” button in mail which then pulls up your iphoto library w/o opening the beast known as iphoto. or…there is a cool script that allows you to open that same photo browser from anywhere. i have it in my toolbar. :)