What is Metadata?


What is Metadata and why is it important to my photos? Metadata in the digital form is information about your photo that is digitally attached to your photo file. Remember the days of printed photos when you’d scribble the dates and important facts on the back of your photos? Think of metadata as these scribbled notes. It can include the time and date the photo was taken as well as where it was taken (if you have GPS on). While some of this information is automatically entered when the photo is initially taken, you also have the option of adding additional information later on.

Including metadata into your images will help you in two ways:

1.) It gives images context. Ten years from now when you look at those images and can’t quite recall where they were taken, or who those people are, you can look at the metadata and easily find out.

2.) It makes it easier to search for images. Simply type “family vacation 2018” into Apple Photos* search bar, and any image with this description written in the metadata will come up.

Apple Photos makes it easy to add metadata:

-Select the image you want to edit or multiple images using shift (if images are side by side) or command keys (if images are separated)
-Click the “i” icon on the top right which will bring up the info box
-Fill in the fields you would like to include. Filling in at least the “keyword” box is our recommendation. Any words written here will then be able to be searched within the application.

Using metadata makes tasks like creating a photo book easier because you are quickly able to search for specific images you need rather then having to sort through years of photos. While it may take some time to add this info to your images initially, it will save you time in the end.

*We are focusing on Apple Photos as that is the program most of our clients and we use ourselves. There are many ways to add and organize metadata on both Macs and PCs.