For photo editing / graphics type work, I consider an optimal set up as a fast computer with lots of RAM, a secondary hard drive for temporary use and a hard drive for back ups.
Allow me please to suggest some ideas for your consideration:
1. You need a back up drive. It is foolish to do serious work on a computer without a backup.
2. You will need Mac software - Photoshop ? - that is not inexpensive.
3. An external drive to serve as a scratch dis and for temporary storage.
You are absolutely right!
As far as the back-up goes, I have it covered with a subscription to backblaze (backs up entire HDD continuously in the cloud) and a NAS, set up to do the same but locally. I daresay this should do the trick (although -knock on a wood- I haven't had any major meltdowns to recover from so far)
For Photoshop I have a subscription to adobe's creative cloud. As a student, this comes fairly cheap compared to regular pricing.
One last thing: what do you mean with 'scratch disk for temporary storage'? Up until now, I simply created a temp-folder on my HDD...
Thanks already for your swift reply!
By default Photoshop creates a scratch disk - this is storage space on your boot drive that serves as "virtual memory". See this link for a full explanation:
The point is that your boot drive does not have to the be scratch disk, if you have either a separate partition or a separate drive. You set this up in Photoshop / Preferences.