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Lightroom Presets: A Way to Speed Your Post-Processing

September 14th, 2017

LRPresetsHave you noticed that there are a bunch of things that you do to almost every photo in a shoot? Things like:

  1. Enabling lens profile corrections which cause Lightroom to recognize what lens was used and load the lens correction profile for that lens.
  2. Reducing Highlights slider
  3. Increasing Shadow slider
  4. Increasing Clarity slider a bit
  5. Increasing the Vibrance slider a bit
  6. Sharpening

You can save all these basic adjustments into a Lightroom Preset. Then with a single click, you can apply the adjustments in the Preset to any given photo. Then you can SYNC those adjustments to a whole set if images if you want. Sure, each photo in a shoot is likely to take a few special adjustments but the idea is to find those adjustments you find yourself doing on every photo and package them up in a Preset, then just fine tune each photo as required. This approach has the potential to save you a bunch of time.

Simon Maxwell includes two presets like this with his Enfuse For Real Estate Photography e-book and video series, an import Preset and a post-processing Preset.

Here is a little 10-minute video tutorial by Anthony Morganti that shows how easy creating your own Preset is.

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4 Responses to “Lightroom Presets: A Way to Speed Your Post-Processing”

  • Agree 100%
    For those that are new to the game, this tip is one of the foundation building blocks to becoming a successful RE photog.

  • Presets in LightRoom can be applied as images are imported as well as during editing. My import preset has things like a small clarity adjustment and sharpening/masking that I use on every RE image. Other presets I apply individually according to what I want done, interior vs. exterior, final bump, etc. Even if a preset isn’t perfect, they can often get you to a point where it’s just a tweak to get the image dialed in. You can even make customer specific presets if you have clients that want more color saturation or other custom treatment.

    In Photoshop, Actions are a great way to speed up work. For a window pull frame have an Action that changes the blend mode to darken, adds a black mask and turns the visibility off. Only three things, but it’s many times faster with the action than doing it manually. Combined with other Actions for things I do all of the time, the time savings adds up over the course of a week.

  • We should also point out that you can use presets in ACR if you are not a Lightroom user. I have one for exteriors and one for interiors in ACR for real estate. I also have a final action in PS I use after blending. You can also batch via Bridge if you have an action you want to add to all or some of your images.

  • Lightroom presets – we love them! I remember how they revolutionised my workflow. If I could add: you can set Lightroom to apply your grouped frequently applied adjustments on actual import of the files: so they arrive in Lightroom with all those adjustments applied to the generated preview, ready for fine adjustments to the ones that need it: saves having to select them all and apply/ sync the preset. It’s the “Apply During Import” tab in the Import control panel and “Develop Settings” : if you’ve created your preset, it will be listed in the options here. And of course, to get the most from adjustments like highlight recovery etc, you’ll really see the most benefit by shooting in RAW.

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