Like most people I take loads of pictures. Some I delete and some I put into albums for events, food pics, etc. Since you can put a picture into multiple albums I tend to use albums a bit like tags by having one picture in multiple relevant albums like a picture of me eating a huge cake in a "food" and a "Me" album which makes it quickly and easily to find a picture I am after by what I remember it had in it.

I can’t usually do this as soon I take the pics, so I will only sort though my recent pictures when I have a minute. However it’s next to impossible to remember which ones have already been sorted and which ones haven't.

Is it possible to create some kind of Smart Album or list showing all media that hasn’t been assigned to an album? I would prefer if it was on the iPhone directly, but something for the Mac or a web based solution would do as well.

2 Answers 2


As of iOS 10.2.1, you can only do this in Photos for macOS.

  1. Open FileNew Smart Album.
  2. Name your Smart Album whatever you like, eg. Uncategorized.
  3. Simply specify the condition: Album is not Any.

Starting with Photos 2.0, Smart Albums do not refresh instantly with every change. This means that you can drag an uncategorized photo from the Smart Album into multiple folders.

  • 2
    I could kiss you! LOL Thanks this is perfect! I thought I had maybe 30 recent pics I had missed... I actually have 619! :O
    – GazB
    Commented Mar 12, 2017 at 7:15
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    On a positive side note I realised that you can move (drag and drop) a photo into multiple albums and it will stay in that smart album until you reload it making this MUCH easier!
    – GazB
    Commented Mar 12, 2017 at 7:31
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    The only issue I have left with this now is: apple.stackexchange.com/q/252489/6796 Any ideas on this @Phong
    – GazB
    Commented Mar 12, 2017 at 7:42
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    Yes that persistence was added in Photos 2.0 (macOS Sierra). Prior to that, Smart Albums would refresh immediately, which would have made it very difficult to add a photo to multiple albums. As for your other question, I’ve been wanting to find a solution for that 😱
    – user11633
    Commented Mar 12, 2017 at 13:50

Not a quite solution but I done it by hiding photos in albums. If you hide photos in an album, they become non-visible in 'All photos' as well. Once hiding all photos in all albums, go to 'All Photos' and whether delete them or repeat same procedure by adding them to relevant album.

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