Every photographer you meet will tell you how much work goes into the postproduction and editing of a photo shoot. When you don’t have a lot of time and just want to quickly polish a batch of photos, filter presets and brushes for your editing program can be a solution - using either your own or commercial ones. I normally don’t use filters for client work and am a bit skeptical of using commercial presets, but I often take landscape photos for fun and daily practice, and rarely get around to edit those properly. When Sleeklens asked me to review their Lightroom presets and brushes for landscape photography, I was curious to see what they could do.
First of all, Sleeklens presets and brushes come in a great variety and are easy to install in Lightroom or Photoshop. I picked three photos I took on my recent trip to the Lofoten in Norway and one in the park right outside my apartment in Berlin, all landscape, but very different in composition and look.
I wasn’t really happy with the original look and meddled around with different presets, until I found some I liked. With a quick click, you can combine different presets and brushes and, most importantly, adapt those settings if you want the changes to be more subtle or more extreme.
In the following examples you can move the sliders to see the difference.
1. Seagulls in Bodø, Norway
Here, I wanted to change the lighting and give the picture a more dramatic feel without overdoing it. As a preset base I used "Basic Film", then added two color correct bases, "Deep Blue Skies" and "Reduce Blue", and for some final touches used the brushes "Subtle Clarity", "Add Golden Sun” and "Darken Shadows”. You might argue that I would have been faster to make those changes without any filters, but I was actually inspired by the look of the different presets you can scroll through and just adjusted a bit to keep the colours natural.