You may have seen today’s photo at (in)courage this week. I snapped it last month just before heading home from our yearly authors’ retreat in Hilton Head. After breakfast at the delightful Signe’s Heaven Bound Bakery and Café, we gathered in the parking lot for hugs and goodbyes.

I love grouping people together for feet shots (and then figuring out who’s who later). As much as I like this arrangement, the original lacks contrast and color—a little bland, don’t you think?

Day 3 - Before

Day 3 - After

The Edits (I use Lightroom, but hope to describe edits in a way that’s helpful if you use another program)

  1. First I used a Lightroom preset I recently downloaded called Make It Better – Auto Tone. This preset and the similar Make It Better have quickly become favorites. They’re free on Sean McGrath Free and Premium Lightroom Presets page. Scroll to the bottom and you’ll find them in the Utility Series group. I wanted to boost the color saturation and contrast and this works.
  2. Next I used a Lightroom preset called Vintage-Retro Warm from the OnOne Signature Collection Presets for Lightroom 4, also available as a free download. This increased the color saturation even more and added a yellow tint. Yellow produces a warm or vintage look, which is popular (everything old is new again, right?).

A Word About Lightroom Presets (ignore this part if you don’t use Lightroom or become frightened by technical jargon)

It’s important to use Lightroom presets made for the version of the software that you use. The same presets work fine for the first three versions, but Lightroom 4, released earlier this year, removes some of the original editing sliders and replaces them with new ones (see graphic above). A preset that works beautifully in Lightroom 3 may look just awful in Lightroom 4, and vice versa.

Fortunately, you can take a photo that’s in Lightroom 4 and edit it as if you were in Lightroom 3 by changing the Process setting under Camera Calibration (see graphic below). I don’t recommend doing this all the time, but if you have a Lightroom 3 preset that you just love, it’s possible to still use it with good results by changing the camera process back to 2010 for the photo you’re editing.

I hope that didn’t hurt and made sense to some of you.

See all 31 Days of Before & After Shots here. Find links to other 31 Dayers here.

[Click here to read my first two 31 Days series, 31 Days of Encouragement and 31 Days of Real Life.]

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4

Pin It on Pinterest