Tips and Tools for Finding Photos

If you have hundreds of iPhone/iPad pictures and you find yourself swiping and browsing your photo library, you might consider the tools that are available to help you find photos.

These are tools that you can use to break down your photo collection and get to the actual photo that you want to see.

The tools are:

  1. Search
  2. Collections.

These tools require that you are connected to iCloud and have the iCloud Photo Library turned on.  Information on this can be found in Senior Tech Recipe #404 How to use iCloud to expand and optimize storage.


Many of the Photos app screens feature a Search icon that will bring up a search bar.  In the search bar you can type locations, dates, and over 4000 categories of objects that Apples recognition tools can identify.  

Take some time to experiment with search by searching for items that you know are in your photo library.  For example, I can search for lake, ocean, tractor, tree and find photos with those objects.

Album Collections

Your Photos app creates a number of automatic collections of photos that are found when you tap Albums.  Some of the more useful search collections are People and Places.

The People album presents the results from Apples face recognition that will attempt to  group all of the photos by individual people. It’s not perfect but also amazing at the same time.  Consider adding names to those collections to support searching for “Don.” Add a name by tapping the picture associated with a group and then tap Add Name.


Tap Add Name to associate the people collection to a name

The Place collections allows you to break down your photo library by locations on a map.  Double tap on the map in order to zoom in for more details. If you continue to zoom, you can get to photos taken at a specific address on a map.

Double Tap on the map to get more details

Tip:  Get to understand Searches, people and places in order to find specific photos on your iPhone.