How Presets Work

Here's a short overview of Adobe Lightroom, and why I sell presets for it.

Lightroom is an editing software for photography, which I've taken a screenshot of below.  This is a mostly up to date version.  I have Adobe Creative Cloud for photographers, and I pay about $11 a month (including taxes) for both Lightroom and Photoshop.  You don't need to buy the Creative Cloud plan to have either software, older versions are still being sold.  I had an older version of Lightroom 4 before I upgraded to Creative Cloud.

Here is a screenshot of Adobe Lightroom with one of my still life photos pulled up.  Nothing has been done so far except that I've selected the photo from my library and gone on the to the develop stage - the point where presets are used.  There are two screens because I use two when I work, but it's not mandatory.  I just prefer using two.

On the far left there is a list of presets already installed, and a small preview box.  If you hover over the preset, it will show a preview in the box above the list.  In the center (the right side of the first screen) is the place where adjustments are made to the photo.  Nothing has been done so far, so everything is set pretty much in the middle.  The histogram with the photo information at the top of the center column will change (along with the settings underneath) once a preset is applied.  A histogram is the representation of the photo data, in this case, shadows, midtones and highlights.

Now here's the same photo after applying a preset.  The preset used is Queen of Hearts from my Presets II Collection.  See how the information in the middle of the screen has changed, the settings and tone curve are no longer in the middle.  The histogram at the top of the center column has changed greatly.  Where there was a great peak before, it has become smoother and longer - the color value information it represented has changed.  Presets can alter a photo with just the one click.  It's really very easy to install and use presets, especially if you work with photography a good deal.

When I first started out using Adobe Lightroom it was because I purchased a new camera body that shot in Canon raw format, and I wanted a good software to open and manage my photos.  I got the trial of Lightroom, and downloaded some preset freebies from other photographers.  The ease of it was astonishing to me.  After so long laboring in Photoshop, using Lightroom was so easy!  I still love and use photoshop a great deal, but I do all of my first level editing in Lightroom.

I started developing my own presets after taking a class about still life photography.  Not only did I learn more about composing shots, but I also watched videos of the instructor doing alterations in Lightroom and Photoshop, and encouraging us to make our own presets for our own needs.

Like many photographers, I find myself shooting often since I carry my camera with me most of the time.  Primarily I like to shoot landscape and nature, but I've done portraits and weddings as well.  I love each different type of photography, and I needed tools that could change with me.  My presets reflect this diversity of subjects - the collections have black and whites, sepia tones, color boosts and other tools that work well with portraits to landscape shots.

Some photographers don't have the time or inclination to make their own presets or other tools.  I enjoy this other part of the creative process and I offer my creations for sale.  I buy brushes, textures and presets from other artists and creators, and I hope that people will purchase and enjoy mine.

No comments:

Post a Comment