Lightroom - How To Create A Develop Preset

Presets in Lightroom are essentially snapshots of effects from the Develop Module that have been applied to an image, and are saved for use on other images in the future. Photographers use presets in Lightroom in different ways.

They can be useful for instance if there is a common set of effects that you apply to certain types of images. You can save these as a preset, and subsequently, it saves time in your workflow. Some photographers never even get past the use of presets and use them exclusively. Ever since Lightroom began, there has been a steady stream of people supplying presets (sometimes free, but mostly for money) to unsuspecting Lightroom users. I use the term unsuspecting for a deliberate reason. 

Presets are a snapshot of the processing used on one image and do not mean that they transfer well to another image. Presets should be used with caution for this reason, and they are certainly no substitute for a deeper understanding of how post-processing works. I encourage people to develop an understanding of the digital darkroom first and then decide how and if presets fit into your workflow. Consequently, when you do use presets in your own images, you will understand that they are a beginning and not an end. To create a preset:

Step 1 - Perform the Develop Edits on an image that you want to be used as a preset.

Step 2 - From the Preset panel on the left-hand side of the Develop Module, select the + symbol. Now, select 'Create Preset'. This presents you with a new pop-up window.

Untitled photo
Untitled photo

Step 3 - Give your new preset a name. You can also choose to save it in a group of other presets. e.g. In this example, I am saving the preset with other Nature Photography presets that I have created.

Step 4 - Select which settings you want to be included in your preset, and click the 'Create' button. Your new preset will now appear in the presets menu for you to use on other images in your library.


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