4 Replies Latest reply: Oct 8, 2012 12:54 PM by papalapapp
papalapapp Level 1 Level 1 (80 points)

I need some help to set up my library propperly. I'm using Aperture for a year now and the organisation of my first major project was a bit of a mess and I lost control. I had a folder as top level, then a Project (box) containing folders and smart folders. I wanted to work with keywords only but that didn't work out.


Now I have an even more complex project and I want to go back to a workflow based structure. But it seems that the boxes, folders and albums aren't quite designed for this kind of organisation. This is what I actually want to do:


– Top level Project name e.g. Seasons

– Sub-projects /divisions e.g. Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter (note that a photo can only be in one category)

– Workflow sections where photos are moved according to their state of progress, e.g. Import, Editing, Review, Published (again a photo can only be/show in one location)


This is how I would have liked to do it:


1. A folder or box as top level called Seasons

2. Four boxes or albums as sub-divisions for the seasons

3. Give every step of the workflow an album or folder (like sections to move through)


Now this is the obstacle I'm facing:


1. I can't put boxes in boxes

2. I can't put photos in folders

3. I can't move photos from one album to another (they need to be deleted separately in the old folder)


I have read about how these elements are designed in the other threads. But I havent yet found a way how to use them the best way for my purpose. The best thing I can think of at the moment is to use folders in the top two levels and boxes for the workflow.


Is there anyone who tried to organise a project like this before?

MacBook, Mac OS X (10.7), 2 GHz Core 2 Duo 1TB + 256 GB SSD
  • 1. Re: How to organise the library best for workflows?
    fotoroeder Level 1 Level 1 (15 points)

    Hi papalapapp,


    what do you mean: boxes? Does Boxes mean, what in the German Version is called "Intelligente Alben?


    As I know, there are Projects-Folders-Albums.


    I would do:    Project:Seasons

                        Folders: Autumn, Summer, Fall, WInter

                        Albums into each Folder called "Originals (Imported), Editing, Published


    Do you want each picture to only be shown in one Album? With this workaround pictures can be in more

    than one Album as long as they are in only one Project, there shouldn't be a problem.


    Hope this helps



  • 2. Re: How to organise the library best for workflows?
    papalapapp Level 1 Level 1 (80 points)

    Hi Uwe,


    thanks for your reply. With boxes I mean projects (the icon looks like a shoe-box). Albums have the disadvantage (for my case) that I can not "move" photos from one album to the next. So if I drag some photos from Originals to Editing, they will still be in the Originals album unless I go back and delete them there.


    If a photo is edited, it shouldn't be in the Originals folder any more since there will be new photos coming in all the time.


    The solution I am trying right now is


    - Folder / Seasons

    - - Folder / Autumn

    - - - Project / Originals

    - - - Project / Edit

    - - - Project / Review etc.


    Somehow it feels wrong to use a Project as a step in the workflow, but I can't think of a better way to achieve this.


    (Side effect: In the "Mediathek" I now have many projects called Originals, Edit, Review etc... lol)

  • 3. Re: How to organise the library best for workflows?
    fotoroeder Level 1 Level 1 (15 points)



    of course you have to find your own way.

    I just recommend  (I first did something similar to what you plan to do, so who am I, to tell that you shouldn't),

    to start not with Folders as the top level organizer.

    In my opinion you have to think not of files but of pictures.

    So the pictures are organized in PROJECTS and are always ORIGINALS because it is different to Bridge or LR

    not files that you are working with (it takes a while to think this over, I guess).

    So the pictures are now organized inside these folders into ALBUMS with different "workflow states" like

    the originals ( I would name them more: base-pictures or shooting or whatever)

    You pick your stars from 1 to 5 (and 9 to delete) to create kind of a choice from the shoot.

    Out of your choice you create an album for your EDITS and immediatly delete those pictures from the SHOOT-ALBUM ( they are still chosen and still you can make them visible via cmd/F and choose all pictures with 1 star and more- go to PICTURES-DELETE FROM ALBUM).

    So now you have every picture only one time inside your PROJECT and still only one time in only one ALBUM.

    Now you feel free to create some intelligent albums if you need, for checking which ones were taken to a lab for printing or send via email or whatever. For me personally these intelligent albums don't work but this depends on the workflow and your clients.

    The advantage is in my case, I export PROJECTS as so called MEDIATHEK (another AP LIBRARY) to an

    Ext HD, so I have all the adjustments and the order, in case AP starts to work not as I want it ( I had these

    issues a few times in the past and had, what is discussed in this forum as well, thousands of pictures two, and more times without knowing what I did wrong after repairing ).

    Hope this helps


  • 4. Re: How to organise the library best for workflows?
    papalapapp Level 1 Level 1 (80 points)

    Thanks Uwe for your interesting explanations. I see that you did a lot of thinking on this. I tried to use smart folders, keywords and colors before and I believe that they are very useful tools. I will continue using them, but acutally more for storing the photos (Ablage) rather than managing the editing process.


    I also thought about keywords as a tool to move the images in the workflow (shift-D). Make a keyword-Set "Workflow" and tag the photos with Edit, Review etc.. So, for example, if I click on "Edit" and de-select "Originals" (shift-click on the keyword), the image would proceed from Originals to Edit. In daily work however, I find it easier to just drag & drop the photo to where I need it. But – as you pointed out – they are not in a common project but just a folder. Although a folder can be exported as a "Mediathek", I don't know whether this might have any other disadvantages later.