Exporting Images With Usuable Names From Evernote

Evernote is a wonderful tool, but I've periodically grown frustrated with it. Evernote is one of those applications that is powerful and open-ended but, as a result, fails to be the kind of well though-out, opinionated software that makes the Mac so great.

One of my main uses for Evernote over the past few years has been collecting design inspiration — images of websites, apps, products, business cards, graphic and industrial design, and more — that I could refer back to from time to time. I had tags for colors, as this was the primary sorting mechanism I was concerned with, and I set up folders for individual design projects. However, last year I found Pixa, an opinionated piece of software that specifically targets the kind of use case I had been ham-fistedly forcing on Evernote. Yesterday, I made the commitment: it was time to switch.

A recurring knock against Evernote has been its poor exportability. The best option for moving my library would have been to export the Evernote notes as HTML, but any images that were captured using Evernote's web clipper come out with inscrutable names, each of which would have to be changed manually. So, I did what I have been doing lately: I built an Applescript.

The Evernote Image Extractor allows you to select any subset of your Evernote notebooks and a destination folder and will proceed to export every image attached to notes in those notebooks. Images are named using the name of their containing note (with a procedure to ensure that no two images have the same name and overwrite one another), and the images from each notebook are exported as separate folders. While Pixa doesn't have Applescript support, it does have an excellent Live Folder feature that makes it easy to get the exported Evernote images into your Pixa library.

Be patient when running the script the first time — it took about 3 minutes on my Retina MacBook Pro to export 1700 images from my 1000+ notes — but I promise, it will be worth it.


You can see more of my projects on the Projects Page. You can also follow me on Twitter as @pxldots.