The Lightroom Preset System
Short Disclaimer: This preset system is NOT a one-click solution to editing. Honestly, its not a one-click anything. Instead, it is set up to systemize workflow. As we know, each photo you take will hold completely unique conditions from the last – different lighting, different colors, different subjects, etc. So what would be the point of a one-click preset? I don’t see one. Now, this system is not completely unique to me. I once watched a video, by a photographer I greatly admire, just tear through a photoset and control Lightroom in a way I had never seen before. I was immediately inspired to create my own preset system after I saw how efficient and creative his workflow was. Anyways, this is sort of starting to sound like a product testament, and I don’t want that to be the vibe so let’s just jump into what this actually does.
The System: There is no correct way or proper sequence to photo editing – it is unique to the user. The design of this system is derived from how I would normally edit an individual photo. I’ll walk through the work-flow: I would first start with the tone curve to set the overall aesthetic and style. I then would adjust the exposure, dehaze slider, sharpness, and presence (saturation & vibrance). After the base work was complete, I would alter the color treatments and control the amount of grain. Lastly, I would return to the basic tab to control the temp, highlights, shadows, whites, and blacks. The system’s thesis is to efficiently consolidate all these actions while not taking away from the creative process. Thus, the left preset panel became the control panel, or “style” panel.
I have taken the time to create this system for my own personal workflow and it has significantly cut back on hours of editing. Of course when you capture a series of photos with the same lighting, subject, fore/background, etc. you can always use the copy and paste to speed up the process further. I implore that you do create your own system as you will learn a lot about yourself and style in the process. BUT, if you want to save time or want to adopt mine I am offering it to the community.
dopetones vol. I
dg_dopetones vol I: If your decision to download were solely based off the naming of the series, I wouldn’t have to write any further. However, for the few that want to read a bit further I have corrected my posture and included a few brief words to pontificate the collection. This is the first set of 7 presets that I have created to use with the system. These will work exceptionally well with both warm and cool images. I have used these treatments for the far majority of my lifestyle edits.
Sunset on da ochin
dopetones vol. II
dg_dopetones vol II: After several months of abusing the first set, I tried to challenge myself by expanding my edits to include a more diverse usage of coloration, yet continue to hold a pleasing cohesive style. This set accomplishes this and will work for the entire array of sun angulation, less pitch black conditions.
dopetones vol. bw
dg_dopetones bw: A collection isn’t complete without offering the entire gamut of coloration control, so I have the black and white series available for experimentation. Most of my public work doesn’t display my love for black and white imagery, but I do find joy in removing the color completely and toning the image to create a marriage between the subject and moment – all the while balancing the ‘dope af’ factor.