How to use the new iOS Comic Book photo filter

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Shoot your own comic-book remake of
Shoot your own comic-book remake of A Scanner Darkly.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

iOS 12 has a great new camera filter: Comic Book. It turns your selfies and photos into pretty convincing pen-and-ink-style drawings, complete with flat blocks of color. It even works with Animoji selfies.

But hold on one second. You won’t find this filter in your iPhone’s Camera app, or even in the Photos app. Instead, you need to fire up the Messages app and use the camera there.

How to use Depth Control on iPhone XS and XS Max

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Depth Control on iPhone XS
Depth Control can add subtle or wild background blur to your images.
Photo: Cult of Mac

The iPhone XS has an incredible new camera, and the best part of that camera is the new Depth Control feature, which lets you adjust the background blur after you take the photo.

This is a powerful feature, but to get the most out of it, you might want to check out these tips and tricks on using Depth Control on iPhone XS.

Check out iOS 12’s great new Photos For You tab

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The new For You tab makes it easy to discover and share your own photos,
The new For You tab makes it easy to discover and share your own photos.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

For many people, the new “For You” tab in Apple’s Photos app could become the default front page for their pictures. The new feature in iOS 12 gathers everything you care about — recent pictures, sharing activity, memories and something called “Featured Photos” — into one convenient spot.

Let’s check out the Photos For You tab and see what you can do with it.

iOS 12 photo imports are way, way better

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Somehow this happened…
Somehow this happened…
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

In iOS 11 and earlier, importing photos from a camera to your iPad photo library was always a bit clunky. You plugged the SD card in using the Lightning SD card reader, or hooked up the camera to a USB adapter, and then the Photos import took over your entire screen.

Also, all the images you imported wound up dumped right into your main photo library, leaving you to manually select them later if you wanted to add them to albums.

In iOS 12, Apple improved all of this. Let’s take a look at the great new photo import features in iOS 12.

How to share Dropbox-style links in iOS 12 Photos app

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You can now share links to your photos, including photos of grapefruits.
You can now share links to your photos, including photos of grapefruits.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

iOS 12 adds a great new feature in the Photos app. Now, when you share a photo, you can choose to copy a link to that photo, and share that instead. This is a lot like sharing a file from Dropbox. You can even copy a link to a whole slew of files and share them by sending a single URL.

Shared photos are stored in iCloud, and the link is accessible to anyone that has it, for up to a month. Let’s see how it works.

How to use Photos’ amazing new search in iOS 12

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iOS 12 Photos thinks that cabbages are melons.
iOS 12 Photos thinks that cabbages are melons.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Photos already has a pretty decent search function on iOS 11. Thanks to Apple’s machine-learning tech, and AI categorization, you can search for thousands of “scenes.” These include the places you took the photo, but also anything from abacus to zucchini, people in the images, and times the images were taken.

This has gotten even better in iOS 12. You can still search on many thousands of categories and keywords, but now you can combine searches. For instance, you could search for several different people, and see photos only containing them all. OR you can combine search terms like Christmas, Food, and 2015, for instance. Let’s take a look.

How to use iOS 12’s cool new selfie filters and AR stickers

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The new iMessage photo filters are so good, you'll want them in the regular camera app.
The new iMessage photo filters are so good, you'll want them in the regular camera app.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

You’ve long been able to take photos inside the Messages app on your iPhone, sending pictures directly into a conversations without saving them to your camera roll first. And you’ve also been able to grab photos from your library. But in iOS 12, both of these features are way better. Especially the camera. Not only does it ditch the stupid thumbnail-sized camera view, but you get access to some awesome new filters, and even AR stickers. Let’s take a look.

Siri is the best way to search photos on your iPhone

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search photos with siri
Hey Siri, show me photos of melons.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Siri is useless for a lot of things, but when it works, it can be a real timesaver. For instance, you can use Siri to search for photos in your iPhone or iPad photo library. Say something like, “Hey Siri, show me photos of clowns,” and it’ll do just that, opening the Photos app, switching to the search tab, and entering the search term “clowns” for you.

Even if you’re sitting looking at the search tab in the Photos app already, Siri is still way easier to use for search than manually tapping something into the search field, deleting the previous search, and typing a new one.

And that’s just the beginning.

Use Siri Shortcuts to quickly send photos to your family

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siri shortcut share photos
Workflow Vs. Siri Shortcuts.
Photo: Cult of Mac

How do you send a photo to several of your family members? Do you compose a group message, adding all their various addresses and phone numbers manually? Do you have several existing threads, each with a different combo of family members?

Today, we’re going to see a much easier way to send a photo to multiple recipients using Siri Shortcuts (or Apple’s Workflow app). It’s so simple that it should be built in to the iPhone.

Pro Tip: How to hide photos in your iPhone Photos library

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It's easy to hide your photos in iOS -- and just as easy to find them.
It's easy to hide your photos in iOS -- and just as easy to find them.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Pro Tip Cult of Mac bug Did you know that you can hide photos in your iPhone’s Photos library? This lets you keep photographs away from prying eyes, while still having access to them yourself. And — ironically — it also makes it very easy to find all the embarrassing/explicit photos on somebody else’s iPhone.