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Creating new libraries

683 Views 5 Replies Latest reply: Jun 13, 2011 10:20 PM by Kirby Krieger RSS
macorin Level 1 Level 1 (30 points)
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Jun 9, 2011 5:13 PM

My Aperture library is getting pretty full and I was considering splitting up my library into multiple libraries for organizational purposes.  I'm wondering if this is something that should be done.  I am also wondering if by doing so it will make Aperture more efficient while I'm working in it.


I'm just looking for some basic feedback.

Macbook Pro 17, Mac OS X (10.6.7), 2.93 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, 4 GB 1067 MHz DDR3
  • Kirby Krieger Level 6 Level 6 (11,590 points)
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    Jun 9, 2011 6:59 PM (in response to macorin)

    Hi Mac.  It really depends.  In general, smaller Libraries don't run appreciably faster than larger ones.  This is partially because the entire database is never loaded.  That's why very fast throughput is important (say, replacing a hard drive with a SSD).  Equally important, bigger databases are almost always more useful than smaller ones.  "All the photos I ever took" is really an order of magnitude more useful than fifty separate databases, one for each year of image capturing ("Show me 'Cats'."  "Show me 'Grayscale'." Etc.  In short, it is always much easier to create sub-sets than to search across multiple databases.


    Therefore, unless you have a pressing reason to break up your database, I wouldn't.


    Storage space is cheap today.  Buy some 1TB and when you run out of internal space familiarize yourself with Referenced Masters and move your Masters to these external drives (FW800 or faster is recommended).


    I have and manage several Aperture Libraries.  My rules-of-thumb are:

    • One Library for each photographer or group of functionally identical photographers (a company that shoots weddings, for example) when the author/copyright-holder of the image is important.
    • Separate Libraries for "authorless" images of a specific category (I keep a Library of paintings and drawings; who made the photographs is of no interest).
    • Separate Libraries for items which need to be handled securely (medical documentation, for example)
  • Kirby Krieger Level 6 Level 6 (11,590 points)
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    Jun 9, 2011 7:34 PM (in response to macorin)

    The reason I posted was because I have certain folders which are starting to accumulate a lot of separate projects.


    Have you tried Folders with sub-Folders?  I hadn't really thought about it, but I just looked and I have Folders seven deep in places.  (Admittedly, I love outlining.)  Two hints which you may already know:

    . "{Option}+click" a disclosure triangle to open or close it and all its children

    . Make useful top-level Folders, and don't put any item except Folders at the top level.

    . . (This is actually a principle of outlining: all levels should contain either body-text or headers, but not both.)


    I regularly get "re-centered" by "{Option}+clicking" the disclosure triangle next to "PROJECTS AND ALBUMS" to collapse my whole long Library outline, then clicking it again to show just my top-level Folders.


    But I don't break up Folders because they have too many Projects.  One database I set up has thousands of Projects in each of dozens of Folders.  That's just how the data was best organized.


      I do currently run a referenced library, backed up to FW800.  I keep the Aperture library itself on my internal.  Things run just fine as it is, so no real problems there.  It was more a matter of trying to simplify things.


    Thanks again,


    You'll find the going easier if you can shift to thinking of each image having a Master, and that Master being either Managed (inside the Aperture Library) or Referenced (not inside the Aperture Library).  Masters are either Managed or Referenced.  A Library can contain both images with Managed Masters and images with Referenced Masters.


    Simple is always good.  The trick with Aperture is to provide what you need, and nothing else.


    Your welcome.  :-)


    Good Luck.

  • Kirby Krieger Level 6 Level 6 (11,590 points)
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    Jun 13, 2011 10:20 PM (in response to macorin)

    You've already seen my file-naming convention, I think.  (DiploStrat's response is spot-on.)  Like you, I realized that a sequential numbering scheme would not work long-term.  I rely on a combination of shoot information, camera-assigned file name, and date.  This gives me unique names (theoretically fallible, but in practice fool-proof), and provides for easy file identification (by me) without having to see an image.


    I try to be careful about not loading cards without re-formatting them (and not using them until the images on them are both imported and backed-up).  My naming convention negates "Do not import duplicates."  It's a trade-off I recommend.


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