Although a Catalog can reference images scattered all over the system, Capture One typically stores your image files in folders. Regardless of the source, images must be imported into a Catalog before they can be viewed. The folders are always listed in the Library's Folder panel.
With existing image libraries, where you have folders of images that don’t require moving, the action of importing in a Catalog simply allows the database file to reference the source files in their existing location and generate the previews so that they can be displayed and found later. Once referenced, the image folders will also be in the Library’s Folder panel alongside any other that were imported from your camera. This enables you to maintain any existing folder structure, where you can move folders and move images between them.
Images will also be organized in dated albums or virtual folders in the Catalog Collection panel as Recent Imports. In the User Collections, you can further leverage the Catalog’s database function to organize related images using customizable Projects, Groups, and Albums without physically moving them from their existing location.