I really like Apple’s Aperture for image management. At first I thought they keywording system was not quite up to par with the best system I’ve used (KPhotoAlbum), but then I found a third method (Keyword Controls) that got closer and then a fourth method (the Keywords sub-tab of the Metadata Inspector). (The first method is simply typing full keywords into the appropriate Metadata field and the second method is the Keyword HUD drag-and-drop system.)
Even with all of these methods, there are still a few kinks, but that’s not the point of this post. This is about what to do with RAW files after I’m done generating the JPEGs. My previous workflow resulted in burning the RAW files to DVDs and saving only the JPEGs on my system. With Aperture, however, the RAW file becomes the Master image and is basically inseparable from the image itself.
What I really need is an action (most likely an Automator script) that can archive a Project, Folder or Album in such a way that all of the metadata is preserved with the archive but the RAW is removed from the Library. The Master left in the library would most likely be a JPEG with optionally reduced resolution. Ideally, the system would still let me make further image modifications, but with a warning that the original was unavailable and the edits may be sub-optimal, and it would allow me to access the archived data if desired.