If you are the type of person to always have your camera ready for that perfect candid photo, Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011 may become one of your favorite tools. It allows you to import and arrange your photos, do minor edits and touch-ups, share with friends, and even has some advanced functions that allow you to combine multiple photos in some very interesting ways. In this tutorial you will see two simple ways to import your photos into the application so you can start organizing and editing all those hard earned memories.
NOTE: It's worth nothing that while most of this tutorial deals with images, Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011 will handle importing and organizing of videos as well as photos.
Connecting your Camera and starting the Import Wizard
The first step is to connect your camera to your computer. Of course, it would be advisable to have some pictures on it. I will be using my Canon EOS 50D but it is roughly the same for any camera. Take a USB cable and plug the computer side into your computer, plug the smaller camera side into your camera, and turn on the camera. Often the appropriate cable will come packaged with your camera. Windows will then recognize your device and, in most cases, install the appropriate drivers to use the camera. In some cases, Windows 7 may ask that you provide a CD with drivers.
Importing from the AutoPlay Menu
If you are like most users, your computer is still configured to AutoPlay any new device that is inserted. If this is true, you should see the AutoPlay window pop up. Click on "Import pictures and videos using Windows Live Photo Gallery".
The program will now scan your camera and open the "Import Photos and Videos" wizard.
Importing From the Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011
If you no longer have AutoPlay configured, or already have Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011 open, you can click on the Import button.
This will, once again, open the "Import Photos and Videos" window; however, this time you are able to select a device to import from.
Clicking Import will bring you to the, recently seen, window where you will be presented with two different ways to import.
Importing All Photos
Now that you have can bring up the import wizard, it would be good to see what options there are for importing media. You will be presented with two options as shown below. First, choose "Import all new items now". You now have the ability to enter a name as well as adding tags.
Clicking the Import button will begin the import process. At this point you have the option of erasing the files from the camera after the process is done by clicking the checkbox labled "Erase after importing".
When finished Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011 will open displaying your images. You may notice that the folder the images have been saved is the same as the name you entered into the "Import Photos and Videos" window.
Importing a Limited Group of Photos
You can also import a small selection of photos. This time select the option to "Review, organize, and group items to import" then click the Next button.
The window will change to a bit more advanced version of the "Import Photos and Videos" window, where you are presented with several options. Here you can "Enter a name" and "Add tags" like in the simple method before.
Additionally, there is an adjust "Adjust groups" slide bar just above the Back and Import buttons. This slider allows you to group or break apart image groups depending on the time between each image. This means pictures can be grouped together if they were taken within a certain period of time. The range of options is from 0.5 hours to 30 days to a just make a single group.
Click the "Select all" check box and the Import button, and like before you will be taken back to Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011 with your newly imported photos. To select only a group of pictures, check the box near it and then click on Import.
Importing from Memory Cards
Much of this tutorial has dealt with moving or copying media off your camera directly. That said, most digital camera's today store images on a memory card that you can directly plug into your computer using a memory card reader. The procedure is essentially the same as in the sections above. If you have AutoPlay enabled, you will see a similar window to when you use a camera.
Using the wizard from Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011 is no different. The camera is simply replaced with a memory card.
As you can see, the import process is not very difficult. Importing your photos can be a quick and simple process, freeing up space on your camera and saving onto your computer. You are also now free to use the features in Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011 to edit, share, and print your photos. For more tutorials about working with pictures and video in Windows Live Photo Gallery 2011, check out all our articles tagged Windows Live Photo Gallery.
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