Today I’m going to be reviewing the Sleeklens Landscapes Presets package for Adobe Lightroom.
First things first, this package is aimed at Adobe Lightroom users that are looking to reduce the amount of time spent processing, offering presets that provide a range of options for editing your photos ranging from basic adjustments to more advanced edits of your photos. I’ve spent a few days with the preset package that I’m reviewing, I have, however, used Sleeklens presets in the past.
The package that I’m reviewing contains 51 presets (auto sliders etc) and 30 brushes that are aimed at editing landscape photos, and comes at a cost of £32 ($39.99). I’m not going to be reviewing every preset/brush that the package comes with, however, you should be able to gauge whether this package could help you out in future.
The process – installing to Lightroom (LR)
There are three easy steps to installing to LR (excluding purchasing):
- Download the .zip file that contains the presets
- Unzip the presets/brushes
- Import into LR
Sleeklens have even provided a youtube video to show you how to do this if you’re unsure – this process should take 2 mins max from downloading to installing. Video below:
For this review, I’ve chosen an HDR image, three Images combined in LR taken at different exposures (-1, 0, +1, essentially giving you an extra two stops of info in your raw file) so as to get better dynamic range from the final photo. I chose this image because it’s simple, and thought it would demonstrate the changes that can be done very quickly with the presets on offer.
Once installed you’ll be offered a range of presets in LR which can be found on the left hand side of your developer window:
Once you’ve got these installed, this is where you can start to play with the various presets. Highlighting a preset with your mouse will change the appearance of the image you’re seeing in the Navigator pane, this won’t actually apply the preset to your image in the developer window until you click it.
The image below has been drastically changed, all by using the ‘All in one’ preset ‘Calm Sunset’ which takes one click of the mouse:
As you can see from the adjustment sliders on the right, they’ve changed a lot from their central/original positions and the image looks completely different from the first image. For me, I’d still make a number of changes and adjustments to the above image, however, a preset like this can reduce the amount of time you’d spend editing each image.
Aside from the ‘All in one’ presets, you’ve got the following options, each with a number of variations that you can use:
- Colour Correct
Some of the variations above can be used in combination with other presets, however, they will tend to overwrite the settings that you’ve added previously. From what I can tell, they don’t reset the image to start with. For example, leaving the Calm Sunset applied, then choosing the ‘Medium Black Vignette’ creates the image below:
If I then choose the ‘Warm Shadows’ preset, the preset overwrites the initial selections, certainly the calm sunset one.
For the image below, I’ve processed a photo with the base preset of the ‘Shine into the Sunset’ then I’ve subsequently made my own adjustments . I was happy with the colour rendering and the overall exposure of the image which certainly saved me some time from my standard workflow. I dodged and burned the path and the hedges on the right of it, and made a couple of other minor adjustments.
From start to finish (after blending the HDR image), the image below took me less than three minutes to create. The major time savings were found using the preset mentioned above. This wouldn’t be the final image I would end up sharing as I’d export it into Photoshop for some finishing touches, but I hope you get the idea about what can be accomplished with using presets in LR.
My final thoughts on the Sleeklens landscape bundle
Even though in my mind there is still often work to be done to produce a fully polished landscape image in LR, this bundle has some fantastic presets, and could save you a lot of time, especially if you’re looking to process a large number of images. I find a lot of presets that are available in the market to be great places to start an image, often inspiring you to take a completely different direction with your image than you first thought – this has certainly been the case with me on numerous occasions.
The Sleeklens package used in this review can be found below, the range of other presets, including presets for portraits, weddings and fantasy colour can be found in the second link:
Sleeklens also offer a variety of other services which can be found on the following links:
Happy presetting everyone! Feel free to leave a comment if you’ve got any questions or to contact me directly via email.