How to Reduce an Image Size in iPhoto

By Mort Anderton

Apple's iPhoto '09 is a tool for managing digital photos on your home computer. It allows you to easily sort and view large numbers of high-resolution images. However, the original image files you download from your digital camera may take up too much space on your hard drive, or they may not be the proper size for printing. Fortunately iPhoto offers two simple ways to reduce the size of your photos.

Crop Tool

Step 1

Select a photo by clicking on it with the mouse. Click on the "Edit" button in the lower left-hand corner of the screen, then click on "Crop". A box will appear on the photo.

Step 2

Click the "Constrain" button at the lower center of the window. Then click on the pull-down menu immediately to the right. Select the image size you want from the list of options, or click "Custom" to enter the exact proportions you want the photo to be.

Step 3

Click and drag the corners of the box to select the area of the photo you want to save. You can change the size and proportions of the box, or move the box by clicking inside it and dragging it with the mouse.

Step 4

Click the "Apply" button at the lower center of the window. This will save your crop, and the new version of the photo will be displayed whenever you view it in iPhoto. You can remove or change a crop at any time by clicking the "Crop" tool again.

Export Function

Step 1

Select a photo you want to re-size by clicking on it with the mouse. If you want to re-size multiple images, select them by holding the "Command" key (on Mac) or the "Ctrl" key (on Windows) and click on the photos you want.

Step 2

Click on the "File" menu and choose "Export". The "Export Photos" window will open.

Step 3

Check to see you are viewing the "File Export" tab. Use the pull-down menus to choose the file kind, quality, and size. Set image kind to "JPEG" or "Original".

Step 4

Choose the quality you want: "Medium" will reduce the file size somewhat, and "Low" will reduce it significantly. Reducing the image quality reduces file size, but the dimensions of the photo displayed on your screen remains the same.

Step 5

Choose the size you want the final images to be. You can pick from common options or select "Custom" to enter the size you want.

Step 6

Click "Export". A new window will open asking where the images should be saved. After making this selection, click "Ok". Your photos will be re-sized and saved in the destination folder.

Tips & Warnings

  • Remember, cropping a photo in iPhoto reduces the display size, not the size of the file on your hard drive. If you want a smaller file you should use the Export function. When using the export function, iPhoto creates a new version of the selected photos. The original images remain on your hard drive. If you no longer want the originals you must delete them manually.