Scott Davenport Photography
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Unclutter Your Aperture UI

When I first started using Aperture, I quickly dismissed full screen mode. At the time, my primary working environment was a Mac Pro with two monitors - screen real estate wasn't a problem. My disenchantment with full screen mode was reinforced when OS X Lion was released - full screen applications render a second monitor useless.

With the addition of a MacBook Pro this year, my workflow has become more mobile. I do more of my photo work on the MacBook and the mobile platforms are more conducive to full screen applications. When performing adjustments, I'd switch to full screen. But for all other aspects of my workflow, I'd switch back to standard mode.

Always wanting to simplify, I started looking for ways to unclutter the screen in standard mode so I'd no longer have to switch in and out of full screen. Aperture offers several controls to reclaim screen real estate. The video below walks through all, and the screen captures show the before and after, but here's the summary:

  • Set the Dock to Automatically hide and show in System Preferences (only need to do this once)
  • Right click on the toolbar and select "Icons only" (only need to do this once)
  • 'd' to show/hide keyword shortcuts
  • 'y' to show/hide metadata display for a photo
  • 'i' to show/hide the Inspector HUD
  • Shift-'t' to show/hide the toolbar

In the video, I made the off-hand comment about there must being an acronym for these keys. How about declutter your interface Today! Yup...cheesy....but now try and forget it!

Aperture UI: Near-default appearance, cluttered

Aperture UI: Uncluttered