I am not sure whether to put this in GQ or IMHO, but I will try here first. Mods, move it if you feel you must.
Backstory: My wife has decided to switch careers and become a professional photographer. She has always done it as a hobby and she is tired of working in cube-land and decided she will make a go of it. OK then, she has a good DSLR and she went and bought some lights, backdrops, various hardware and took a bunch of classes. She has already had a couple of gigs and it looks like she will most likely succeed in getting the career going. The one very important thing that has yet to be set up is a good, redundant, storage system. There are many ways to do this, but we have already decided on what we would like to do but I just am not sure of the best way to implement it.
Details: My wife has a MacBook Pro (OS X 10.6.6) she is using with ~200 GB of storage on it. She would like to take pictures and immediately have them backed up to an external drive (we do have Time Machine). After she has tweaked them in Photoshop and distributed them to the clients, she would like to put them in redundant long term storage and take them off her hard drive. To do this we have two external USB drives (1.5 TB each). We thought it would be nice to use one drive as a straight external storage drive (call it Archive) for the long term archiving, and the second as the backup Time Machine Drive. The time machine drive would be used to back up both the hard drive and the other external archive drive, thus guaranteeing that all storage would be redundant. When we fill the drives, we will put them in a desk drawer and by another pair of external drives.
What do you think? Is there a better way to do this? Am I missing anything here? Is this the cheapest way to do this with a good chance of being successful? We thought about buying a Drobo, but they are so expensive and this seemed like a cheaper solution, especially now when she is just getting started.
All comments are seriously appreciated!