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Why are photos turning all white or black when I edit?

1129 Views 23 Replies Latest reply: Mar 9, 2013 12:41 PM by rdervin RSS
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rdervin Calculating status...
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Jan 14, 2013 1:00 PM

When I try to edit a photo in iPhoto it turns all white or all black.

When I click undo the photo goes back to normal.


Initially I thought it only happened on photos from my iPhone but it is now happening to photos from other camera's.

The issue is not specific to any type of edit I am trying to do, it happens with all methods of editing.


I am using iPhoto 11 version 9.4.2


Can anyone help?

  • KarenSelena Level 4 Level 4 (1,905 points)

    Sounds like your iPhoto Library has some sort of corruption.  Basically you see all the "thumbnails" but double clicking on them produces a blank screen or a screen with an esclamation mark. 


    If this is the case, do you use time machine? 


    If yes, ensure you have a current back up.  If no, they you will want to back up your iPhoto LIbrary before you start troubleshooting it.


    Do you use time machine??

  • Old Toad Level 10 Level 10 (113,195 points)

    Make a temporary, backup copy of your library if you don't already have one (Control-click on the library and select Duplicate from the contextual menu) and  apply the two fixes below in order as needed:


    Fix #1


    Launch iPhoto with the Command+Option keys held down and rebuild the library.




    Since only one option can be run at a time start with Option #3, followed by #4 and then #1 as needed.


    Fix #2


    Using iPhoto Library Manager  to Rebuild Your iPhoto Library


    1 - download iPhoto Library Manager and launch.


    2 - click on the Add Library button, navigate to your Home/Pictures folder and select your iPhoto Library folder.


    3 - Now that the library is listed in the left hand pane of iPLM, click on your library and go to the File ➙ Rebuild Library menu option.


    4 - In the next  window name the new library and select the location you want it to be placed.


    5 - Click on the Create button.


    Note: This creates a new library based on the LIbraryData.xml file in the library and will recover Events, Albums, keywords, titles and comments.  However, books, calendars, cards and slideshows will be lost. The original library will be left untouched for further attempts at fixing the problem or in case the rebuilt library is not satisfactory.



  • KarenSelena Level 4 Level 4 (1,905 points)

    First, while trying to follow the steps in "Fix 2", ensure you see the words "iPhoto Library Manager" directly beside the apple.  When you do, then got to file, you should see what you are looking for.


    Let us know

  • KarenSelena Level 4 Level 4 (1,905 points)

    Thanks you for that!

  • KarenSelena Level 4 Level 4 (1,905 points)

    To see what library iPhoto is pointing to.........


    With iPhoto open, got to file / switch to library.  This will display a window, and the iPhoto Library you are currently using, will say (default) behind it.  When you select this library, it will display the librarys location below the box. 


    iPhoto Library Location.jpg

  • KarenSelena Level 4 Level 4 (1,905 points)

    Unfortunaly, the recommended course of action at this point, is to restore from a back up.  You don't have a back up. 


    If you have no back up in place, you can do what is referred to as a "manual rebuild" of the iPhoto Library, however it will only get the original images you imported into iPhoto back.  It will not bring back any albums, slideshows, books / cards / calendars etc. you created in iPhoto. 


    Before continueing with this step, they still recommend you back up your "bad" iphoto library for precausionary measures.  You can do this, by dragging it to an external drive, and waiting for it to copy, or if you have enough room on the computer hard drive, you can duplicte the existing bad iPhoto Library.  NOTE - you may already have a back up from doing previous steps above. 


    Once the back up is finished, you would need to do the following:


    - go to finder / home folder / pictures - right click on the original iPhoto Library and select "show package content".  Locate a folder entitled "masters" and drag it out to your desktop

    - hold down your option key on your keyboad, and with the option key held down launch iPhoto.  A window will open asking what photo library you would like to use.  Select the "create new" button at the bottom, and create a new iPhoto Library


    - when this new iPhoto window opens, it will be completely blank.  You must then go to "file / import to library - select the desktop, then the folder called "masters" and import it

    - this will re-import all you pictures back into this new library

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