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Lightroom preset question (overlay on top of original adjustments))

Discussion in 'Image Processing' started by imahawki, Sep 15, 2014.

  1. imahawki

    imahawki Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 12, 2014
    Not sure if the title gets to what I'm going to ask but here goes.

    Lets say you have two images that you want to apply a cross process preset to. The preset has a "blown out" look so you added a brightness +5 as one of the adjustments. Photo #1 looks great before you apply the preset but Photo #2 needs some brightness added to get the same look and feel as Photo #1. So you set Brightness to +12. If you apply the preset to both photos, won't #2 be at brightness +5 when in reality to get the same final "blown out" look and feel it needs to be at +17 (the original 12 plus 5). But that's the way lightroom works, correct? If you think about this from a workflow perspective, you want to get levels, white/black/highlight/shadow all set for each photo before you apply a "filter". But you want that filter on TOP of the original adjustments. Am I thinking of this right?
  2. mcasan

    mcasan Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 26, 2014
    Within LR the order in which you add non-destructive adjustments/filters in the Develop Module does not matter. A Present is just a set of adjustment/filter values you can save and apply at import or anytime during the workflow.

    I have a Preset I use for importing all photos. It works well for most as the starting point to make other adjustments.
  3. imahawki

    imahawki Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 12, 2014
    So there's no way to do what I'm describing. Preset values are absolute and there is no way to make them relative... again, as an example, if part of my preset "recipe" is -0.25 exposure value, I can't apply that to a photo that was underexposed and I set to +1. Instead of it moving to +0.75, its going to go all the way down to -0.25. That doesn't seem as useful for batch work.
  4. Wisertime

    Wisertime Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 6, 2013
    You're overthinking this...I think...? :rolleyes:  What you do before or after a preset is additional to the preset recipe. A preset is just a starting point to save time. You can move sliders at will before or after applying presets.
  5. fredlong

    fredlong Just this guy...

    Apr 18, 2011
    Massachusetts USA
    The presets move the sliders to preset values not by a preset amount.
  6. I've tried this in Lightroom 5 using a preset and it definitely takes initial adjustments into account. For example, I have a photo that is really dark and when I apply the preset the result is also really dark, however when I first adjust the brightness of the image and then I apply the preset I get a bright resultant image. Hence the preset must be an "add 5" rather than a "set to 5".
  7. imahawki

    imahawki Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 12, 2014
    Hmm, I'll double check this behavior! Maybe this was a problem in prior versions and I hadn't noticed it had been changed.
  8. imahawki

    imahawki Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 12, 2014
    I have to say that unless I'm doing something wrong, this is not working as you described. I made a test preset that changed the tone curve, added some cross processing and added a half stop of exposure. I then found an over-exposed image and dropped the exposure about 3/4 of a stop. When I applied the preset, exposure should have gone to -.25 as you described, but it didn't, it wen to +.5. This seems like either a bad design choice or at least something that should be an option you could change (make presets absolute or relative).
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