Monday, January 28, 2013

How to Make Your Pictures Sunny & Dreamy

Presets are such a huge time saver. If you don't know what they are just imagine if you swept your house once & you could press record on the broom & the next time you needed to sweep you could push play & it would do it again on its own. Presets do this same chore for editing. If you have a ton of pictures that you are wanting to edit the same or your trying to build a more consistent look for your branding, then these little suckers are lifesavers.  Now to clarify, Presets are the same idea as Actions but Actions are for Photoshop & Presets are for Lightroom.

I used to edit everything in Photoshop because I didn't really understand Lightroom yet & I also couldn't find any presets I liked but I had lots of Actions I really liked in Photoshop. BUT, while Photoshop is amazing & really gives you tons of control, I cannot tell you how much happier you will be working from Lightroom. It saves so much time! Let me say that again because I want you to know, IT SAVES YOU SO MUCH TIME! My god, you can have a life again! If you are editing Weddings in Photoshop for example, because those are the worst in terms of how long they can take....don't jump, there's hope, it's Lightroom.

So I made this golden colored preset (seen below) because I wanted to be able to make pictures feel dreamy & sunny & sometimes when your out shooting the weather is the exact opposite of that. You can find it here along with some other pretty presets.  If you want to do it yourself I recommend playing with the RGB curves versus just your white balance which is what most people do & then they end up with a yellow picture not a sunny one.

So if you didn't know about Presets, now you do but before you run off & get excited & buy a bunch of new ones then wonder why they look bad here's some advice based on doing just that myself & learning some lessons:

1. It's best to use presets on Raw Images. Clicking a preset onto a Jpeg will look not as great, don't ask questions it's just the truth.

2. Don't buy a Preset that looks great on objects & expect it to look good on humans. There's a lot of presets that show flowers or tea as an example of what the preset looks like but make sure they show it on humans because this is where I see most Presets go wrong. Purple midtones may look great on a flower but make a human an oompa loompa.

3. Don't take a terd & cover it in glitter & expect it to look good. Too harsh? Sorry, I just love analogies every once in a while. But seriously, start with a good image. Presets & Actions aren't miracles people. Mascara doesn't make an unattractive person attractive, it just enhances what they already have...same concept here.

I have some tutorials on my Youtube channel for using Presets if you have more questions & I can also show you how to use my Presets on your images to get the most out of them if you need help. I also make Presets & Actions for Photographers looking for something custom based off a look they seen in another picture so get in touch if you are wanting something custom for your brand. 

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