Brand new Aperture user

Started 11 months ago | Discussions thread
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Kenneth Sloan
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Brand new Aperture user
11 months ago

I'm making a major change, and need advice.

I currently have about half a teraByte of original images (recent digital, scanned transparencies going back 40 years, miscellaneous images gathered online).  Up until now, these have all lived in the Picture folder on my primary laptop - which is backed up to at least 3 other places.  I have been using iPhoto for all manipulation and cataloging (my current practice is to shoot RAW with one of several Olympus cameras - E-30, E-P3, E-M5).  All of this has worked well, as long as I had a 1 teraByte drive in the laptop and everything fit.

Both of those things have changed.  My new laptop has only half a teraByte AND space was already getting tight.  So, I'm re-organizing.

I'm taking this opportunity to switch to Aperture (decision made, purchase complete, done deal) and need advice on how to structure my libraries, my original images, etc.

Most of my post-processing is straight-forward and I would not be heartbroken to lose what information is in my current iPhoto library.  But, I suppose it would be nice for this to be the LAST time I lose that info.

I want EVERYTHING on an external, portable disk (probably at least two - one the mirror of the other, perhaps even three).  Of course, the originals are the most important thing to back up - but let's keep the libraries safe, too.

Right now I have ONE iPhoto library (which has lots of duplicates and multiple versions of some images because of previous badly done migrations to new iPhoto libraries in the past).  I probably want several Aperture libraries (based on category of image...I think).

How should I proceed?  Where should my Aperture library live?  How should I back it up?  Where should my originals live?  How should I back THEM up?

And finally...I have several laptops that travel with me in various combinations.  Should I maintain iPhoto libraries on those machines (for quick and dirty stuff while on the road) and then move things into the one, true Aperture environment when I get home?  Should I travel with a copy of the entire Aperture environment (for now, it will fit easily on a 1TB portable drive)?

I will, of course, RTFM - but I'd really appreciate pointers from people who have actually done this, expecially warnings about "gotchas".

and (sorry) I'm not interested in being told that product XYZ will do the job better.

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-Kenneth Sloan

Olympus E-30 Olympus PEN E-P3
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