Photos Field Guide (2nd Edition)

Get the Most from Apple Photos

   Watch Promo

Published May 2020

This second edition of the Photos Field Guide contains nearly 6 hours of video tutorials that will up your photo game on your iPhone, iPad, and Mac. Over the years, organizing, editing, and sharing your photos with multiple devices has come to feel like chasing a mythical white whale. Not anymore. The Photos Field Guide delivers the goods, and this video course teaches you how. This course has in-depth video, explaining how to get the most from the Photos app on the iPhone, iPad, and the Mac.


While Photos attempts to make your initial setup simple and easy, there can be complications. What if you have more than one existing photo library? What if you've got folders of photographs sprinkled all over your hard drive? All of these can be imported into Photos, but you've got to know the ropes. This video screencast shows you all kinds of tricks to run Photos on your Mac, iPad, and iPhone.

Photos also can use iCloud Photo Library to make sharing photos between your Mac, iPad, and iPhone so much easier. The Video Field Guide walks you through the initial iCloud setup, including advice on which cloud storage to use and how to get the initial upload of your photo library done with as little pain and suffering as possible.

While "point-and-shoot" works amazingly well, you can do so much more when taking your photos with a modern iPhone. This section includes multiple videos explaining how you can take photos from portrait mode to panoramas. This section also includes some photography basics to get you up and running.

There are some great affordable and compact accessories to improve your iPhone photos. Learn about useful tripods, lenses, and lighting sources that fit in your pocket.

Multiple sections and videos cover a complete soup-to-nuts treatment of how to take, organize, find, edit, and share your photos in the Photos app for iPhone and iPad.

Organizing Photos

Photos uses an intuitive organizational structure that lets you see your pictures grouped in multiple ways. You have thousands of pictures. Photos will make it easier to find your favorites. You can even search your library so if someone says, "Hey! Quick, find me that photo of Aunt Trudy from 2004 wearing that Juicy tracksuit!", you can deliver the goods. This stuff sounds complicated. It's not. By the time you get to the end of this video, you'll be able to embarrass Aunt Trudy in no time flat.

Editing Photos

Photos also has a surprisingly large toolset to make your photos better. You can do simple edits, like cropping and rotating, but you can also make complex adjustments to color and light. On the Mac there are even more tools including a histogram, sharpening, definition, noise reduction, vignette and level adjustments. If all of this sounds like greek to you now, that's okay. After watching the video, it won't.
The video also explains Photos’ built-in filters and how they can be an excellent jumping-off point for making your photos look great. It also covers the semi-magical "enhance" button. If that's not enough, there are workflows to get your photos out of the Photos app and into an external editor for further work on the Mac, iPad, and iPhone.

Sharing Photos

With the new Photos app, there are many ways to share your images with friends and family from something as simple as an email to full-blown shared iCloud albums. This section covers all of the sharing options.

All those cool tricks covered in the iPhone and iPad are also fully explained and demonstrated on the Mac. Learn how to organize, find, edit, and share your photos from the Mac just as easily as you can on the iPhone and iPad.

Believe it or not, Photos can manage, edit, and share your video files too. This section covers the best practices for managing video files in Photos and its limited editing capabilities.

No photo management system is complete without a thorough backup system. The Photos Field Guide concludes explaining backup strategies and techniques. This section also demonstrates how to export images from Photos for additional backup.


There are more topics covered in this Photos Field Guide including a primer on digital photo formats, popular third-party photo applications, application settings for the Photos and Camera apps, and more.

  • 122 videos fully streamable plus combined versions for easier download
  • Nearly six hours of video tutorials.
  • Full coverage for iPhone, iPad, and the Mac.
  • Everything is broken up and paced so novice to advanced users can get on board and master their Photos.

Your Instructor

David Sparks
David Sparks

David Sparks was lucky enough to grow up alongside the computer revolution. He programmed his first computer in 1980, and since then, he’s been on a never-ending quest to be more productive with his Apple technology.

David is a past speaker at Macworld, the American Bar Association’s TechShow, and many other technology events. David publishes the popular MacSparky Blog and has been making The MacSparky Field Guides since 2012, and he authored several books about productivity and Apple technology before that. David is also a co-host of the popular Mac Power Users, Automators, and Focused podcasts. David also produces the MacSparky Labs, where he goes even deeper on workflows and the productive use of technology.

Since the beginning, getting your technology to work for you instead of against you has been David’s North Star. He’s honed those skills over his 28-year career as an attorney and 15-year career as MacSparky, where he has conducted countless experiments and interviews.

In a world where technology is increasingly conspiring to steal our focus and attention, David aims to teach you how to be more productive with Apple technology. David wants to help you achieve what is most important to you and simultaneously enjoy your life. Everything he makes points at that destination.

Course Materials

  Discovering Photos on the iPhone and iPad
Available in days
days after you enroll
  Additional iPhone and iPad Apps
Available in days
days after you enroll
  Discovering Photos on the Mac
Available in days
days after you enroll
  Additional Mac Apps
Available in days
days after you enroll
  Photos on Apple Watch and Apple TV
Available in days
days after you enroll
  PDF and ePub Transcripts
Available in days
days after you enroll

If you feel lost in the sea of pictures that inhabit your Apple Photos application, then David Spark’s “Field Guide” is the perfect antidote. Whether you use a Mac, iPhone or iPad, David’s short but powerful video’s provide invaluable tools for organizing, manipulating and sharing your photos. Before you know it, you’ll be in control again.


This course gave me a newfound appreciation for not only the Photos app—but also for all of the photos I’ve taken in the past. The Photos Field Guide is one of the most comprehensive screencasts I’ve ever watched: I had no idea how many features of the app I wasn’t taking advantage of until I dug into the course. If you use Apple’s Photos app, this course is a no-brainer.

Chris Bailey, A Life of Productivity

COVID gave me enough time to organize a stack of old photos and videos on DVDs — couldn’t believe my luck that David Sparks just released a PHOTOS Field Guide. I trust what I’d learn. MacSparky guides have taught me most of the efficiency techniques I use.


I have several of David Sparks’ guides and have found all of them both entertaining and of practical value. I have recently started reviewing and reorganising my large Photos library that I usually view on my iMac or via Apple TV. The Photos Field Guide looked like it would help me with this task.

The Field Guide is split into sections containing short videos on each topic. I would like to think I am already reasonably experienced with Photos, but I have found many useful tips and discovered new features that have proved very helpful.

I have used digital SLR cameras for several years, but I am now taking more photos with my iPhone as it is always available. The Field Guide provides a quick but comprehensive guide to the iPhone camera features that it would otherwise be easy to miss. I use the iPhone a lot for “quick shots”. The Field Guide section on photo editing explains clearly how to bring photos taken less carefully up to standard.

Like all MacSparky publications, the Photos Field Guide provides excellent information and represents great value.


Frequently Asked Questions

When does the course start and finish?
The course starts now and never ends! It is a completely self-paced online course - you decide when you start and when you finish.
How long do I have access to the course?
How does lifetime access sound? After enrolling, you have unlimited access to this course for as long as you like - across any and all devices you own.
What if I am unhappy with the course?
We would never want you to be unhappy! If you are unsatisfied with your purchase, contact us in the first 30 days and we will give you a full refund.

Get started now!