Presets F.A.Q.

What are presets?

I use Adobe Lightroom to edit all of my photos. Presets are photo filters within Lightroom that you can apply to your images with the click of the button. I’ve spent hundreds of hours fine tuning my signature editing style over the years — the preset packs I sell contain a variety of edit styles I use in my work everyday. I hope they help you achieve a look you love without having to spend years figuring it all out on your own.

So What’s The Big Deal?

  1. Presets save loads of time. Not only can you click around the preset packs to find exactly the right filter for your image, instantly. But when you import your photos into Lightroom you can apply a filter upon import for instant edits on an entire batch of photos.

  2. Unlike phone photo filters in programs like VSCO or ColorStory you can fine tune every aspect of each Lightroom preset filter to your liking — from highlights and tone curve to shadow tone.

What’s the difference between Desktop presets and Mobile presets?

There are two versions of Lightroom — the desktop app and the mobile app. I use the desktop app primarily — it’s a powerful, versatile professional program (subscription costs $10/month from Adobe). The mobile app is free (get it from the app store here) — it’s not as powerful as the desktop app but it’s one of the best editing tools you can get on your phone.

Adobe recently announced that it’s possible to sync presets from Lightroom Classic to Lightroom CC Desktop App to the Mobile app if you’ve synced your accounts in the Adobe Creative Cloud (see a tutorial via Filter Grade here). So, it is possible to sync presets between desktop and mobile if you meet the right conditions.

I am currently working on DNG files of my presets that I can guarantee work on mobile and desktop. For now, these presets are (for most users) desktop only.

WHEN Can I get your presets just for the free mobile Lightroom app?

I’m working on a mobile pack of my Lightroom presets but they’re not currently available. These will be DNG files that also work in the desktop Lightroom app.

What’s included in the PRESET packs?

The Dreamy Food Photo Preset Pack is designed for natural light food photography with options for every light condition from overcast to golden hour to high noon sun. Many of the presets are also great for lifestyle and portrait shots as well. There are 22 unique presets in that pack.

What Camera and lens do you use?

I use a Canon 5D Mark IV with a Canon 50mm prime f/1.4 lens or a Sigma for Canon macro 50mm f/2.8 lens (discontinued, check out the Sigma 105 mm f/2.8 for a similar look instead.) For all of my equipment click here.

Do these presets fit my style?

If you take a look at my work you’ll see that I mostly shoot in filtered, soft light indoors near a big window. I’m fond of back-lighting, cloudy days and shooting in darker conditions. I primarily work with still life imagery, but I also do portraiture which I generally shoot in overcast or golden hour light. I love shooting in intense, high-contrast, high-noon light occasionally; I have a number of options in my preset pack for that kind of lighting. The style is dreamy and moody — if you like that aesthetic, this pack is for you! But if you shoot in artificial light conditions or you want a high color contrast, intense or sharp look this might not be for you.

Will my photos look just like yours when I use your presets?

So many factors determine the end look — the camera, lens and camera settings are the most important bit. The light is the 2nd most important bit. Not only does the quality of the light change throughout the day, but light tone is different all over the world. The light I work with tends to be more green and blue (probably because Virginia is intensely green in the warm months). Desert environments have more glowing reds and yellows. Northern climates have more blues and purples. There are a million factors. You’ll have to experiment with your environment and light — but shooting in natural light on a DSLR in RAW with a nice lens will make the biggest difference.

What’s the difference between RAW and JPEG? Will the presets work with both?

RAW and JPEG are two file formats that you can shoot your photos in on a DSLR camera. Most DSLR’s allow you to choose if you’d like to shoot in RAW or JPEG within the camera settings. RAW files retain a huge amount of data about your photo, all of the light and color info your camera can capture. RAW files —when edited — have the most dynamic look and are ideal. It’s what the pro’s use. JPEGs are smaller files that compress the data captured by your camera which means you lose dynamic image range in lieu of smaller files.

You can change a RAW file into a JPEG (which makes it shareable). But you can’t turn a JPEG into a RAW file.

I shoot entirely in RAW. I recommend you shoot and edit in RAW to get the most out of my preset packs. Tip: I store all of my RAW files in external hard drives which keeps the large files from slowing down my Lightroom app. If you prefer to shoot / edit in JPEG the presets still work as long as you shoot with a good camera / lens and use a high quality file size.