how to install + use lightroom presets for better photos
how to install .xmp lightroom presets for desktop lightroom classic (syncs with mobile)
On a PC, go into the lightroom toolbar to edit > preferences
On a Mac, go into the lightroom toolbar to lightroom > preferences
(note: i don’t have a PC, so you’re getting mac screenshots, sorry boutcha - if you need help, say hey)
under the ‘presets’ tab, click ‘show lightroom develop presets’. this will open your ‘camera raw’ folder and should highlight the ‘settings’ folder — click it to open.
drag or copy/paste the folder containing your .xmp files (chickpeach presets) into this ‘settings’ folder
restart lightroom classic, and your presets are ready to use.
how to install .xmp lightroom presets for lightroom cc (syncs with mobile)
in the lightroom cc app (not classic, the logo is rounded instead of square) click into the ‘edit’ panel on the top right corner.
open ‘presets’ from the bottom right of the edit section.
click the three dots in the top right corner of the presets panel, then select ‘import presets’
upload the file that contains your .xmp presets (chickpeach presets) and that’s it - your presets are ready to use. you may need to restart lightroom cc and your mobile app if you use it, but lightroom should automatically sync your presets so you can use them on your phone instantly.
how to install .dng files for lightroom cc (if you use the free mobile version only)
this one is a tiny bit more complicated, but you got this.
note: install your lightroom presets this way only if you do NOT use the desktop version.
unzip the files you downloaded. this is easiest on a computer, but if you have to use your phone, there is an app called Winzip that you can download to help.
open the folder called ‘chickpeach presets mobile only’ (in individual preset downloads, the DNG file will just be in the main file) and transfer the unzipped .dng file(s) to your phone using airdrop, messages, dropbox, etc. they will save as greyed out squares in your photo app on most devices - there should be eight ‘photos’ total.
open the lightroom cc mobile app, create a new album called ‘chickpeach presets’, and upload the 8 .dng files from your phone. you will see each as a photo of peaches with the title of the preset on it. (side note: you can delete this album after the presets are installed)
open the first photo in the new album, and make note of that preset name (adventure, for example) then tap on the 3 dots at the top right corner of the screen, and select ‘Create preset’
on the ‘new preset’ screen, enter the preset name as it was shown in the photo preview. under preset group, select ‘create new preset group’ and title it ‘chickpeach presets’, then save with the checkmark. repeat this step for each .dng file, saving each in the ‘chickpeach presets’ group.
your presets are ready to go!
you can find them in the edit bar at the bottom of any photo you are working on, under ‘presets’. if you are not seeing yours, make sure you click the arrow above your list to select the correct preset collection (chickpeach presets).
how to install and use your bonus photoshop actions for dust + scratch + matte effects
photoshop ‘actions’ are basically recorded steps that can be ‘played’ onto a photo to recreate the same look. this one is part of my batch edit photo workflow, and helps me to get a consistent look on my photos while saving me from applying the same effects to each individual pic.
[‘sunshine’ preset + matte + film dust + film scratches + coral light leak]
first, we have to load the patterns so photoshop knows what files to pull for the actions.
1. open the photoshop preset manager by clicking edit > presets > preset manager. select ‘patterns’ from the drop down, then ‘load’ on the right hand panel.
2. select and load the file called ‘cp-photoshop-patterns.pat’ found in the aesthetic collection preset bonus folder, and then click done to exit the preset manager.
now, we’re ready to install the one-click actions.
on most computers, all you have to do is open the chickpeach.atn file, and it will load it into the photoshop actions palette.
if just opening the file doesn’t work, just open photoshop > window > actions, to make sure the actions palette is checked and visible. then in the actions palette (top right) select ‘load actions’ and select the file.
to run the action and apply the effect, simply open a photo in photoshop, and open the ‘actions’ tab. select the action you’d like to apply, then click the play button below it. make sure to save your changes, and if you’re using lightroom, it should automatically add the edited version right back into your lightroom app alongside the original. (also, you can customize any of the action effect layers by changing the opacity, using the eraser tool, etc.)
oh, and just a heads up:
the ‘ig resize’ action will brings the width down to 2048px, optimum resolution according to the gram (most phone/camera pics are much larger than this, but if your photo is smaller, this one will distort it so skip it)
what exactly is a preset? are they easy to use?
presets are “filters” created by photographers (and some of us strange hybrid creatures called bloggers) for adobe lightroom. each preset is basically a lot of different photo enhancements packed into one click — adjusting exposure, colors, saturation, white balance and more, to create a specific look. they are great for anyone who posts photos (uhh.. everyone nowadays?) and wants a cohesive aesthetic that won’t keep you tied to your laptop or phone for days learning new apps and editing each photo individually. other than a basic computer knowledge and ability to follow instructions, you don’t really need to have any photo editing experience to use lightroom presets.
what do i need in order to use this preset collection?
at minimum, you only need the free version of the lightroom cc mobile app. if you would like to install the presets on a desktop, you need lightroom cc or lightroom classic, and to use the bonus actions, you will need photoshop cc (not the mobile app photoshop express). you will also need either a computer to unzip the files and some sort of cloud system to transfer and save them to your phone, or you need an app that will unzip files directly on your phone (there’s one called winzip).
what is lightroom, and should i be using it anyway?
lightroom is a set of professional programs used to edit digital photography. think of it as a ‘darkroom’ on your computer, to ‘develop’ unprocessed photos. lightroom classic is the most extensive version, with far more powerful editing tools - but it does have a learning curve. in lightroom classic, your uploaded photos also do not 'sync’ to any other versions of the program.
lightroom cc is a cloud based editing program, and it is way more simple than the classic version — plus it has a desktop version and a mobile version, and it automatically syncs your photos and presets between the two if you have an adobe creative cloud membership (the basic photography plan is only $9.99/mo). both of the desktop versions have to be purchased through adobe (+ they have free trials), but the mobile app offers a free lightroom version.
oh, and yes, you should be using it! it’s more professional and less glitchy and produces higher quality photos than most popular phone apps, and most importantly it can save you hours of time — which means you can take more photos and generally like, live your life and all.
should i install the desktop files or mobile version?
depends entirely on what you use. you should only follow the instructions below for mobile installation if you do not ever use the desktop version, and you do not plan to. otherwise, if you install the desktop version, it will be loaded automatically into your mobile app. as far as the preset quality goes, they are exactly the same on desktop or mobile.
will these presets make my photos look exactly like yours?
nah cuz i’m original, bisssh. no but seriously, these are my presets — like the exact ones i use on like 99% of my photos. so, yeah, they will look like my photos, but of course not exactly. i actually try really hard to limit my time on photo edits — because i will get lost in it for hours if left to my own devices.
i just love playing with editing apps and creating random effects and art of out my photos, so a lot of the time my final product that you see on instagram or the blog has had obviously had more work done to it than just these presets. that being said, the whole point of a preset is to be able to “copy and paste” your same style over and over, so to speak, without having to make the same edits on each image.
i’d say my presets do like 90% of the work on my photos, and i throw in an extra 10-50% if i’m feeling over the top or working on a surreal project. i do apply these exact presets to every photo before i make any other edits — so i guess that’s the answer. they will look 90% like mine but uhh… not in a creepy way?
will these presets work on every photo in every situation?
well, no. but it’s a fine line between “is this preset going to work to give me a consistent style across my photos?” and “will this universally make everyone in the world a better photographer?” because i think it goes without saying, the higher quality photo you start with - the better the camera, the more skilled you are behind the lens, or at the very least, you’ve developed your own style with images that are all taken in similar settings - obviously the better the final photo will be.
that being said, these lightroom presets are designed to work best with natural light photography, with the exception of ‘moonlight’, which lends a silvery look to photos taken in lower lighting as long as they are high quality, preferable raw files. being perfectly honest — there are no presets that will work well with artificial, indoor lights (not studio quality, i mean like lamps) simply because those photos do not look good in the first place. there is a reason photography is all about chasing light.
there will always be a few things in each photo you personally may want to tweak to get it to look like what you had in mind. but i have purchased and used a lotttt of presets in my 6 years of blogging, and i can tell you, it’s so hard to find one that actually works with one click. guess that’s why i made my own. 😙
how do i apply presets to multiple images at once?
in lightroom classic, you can apply the preset to one photo, and press the “sync settings” button (select all options) to apply the preset across the board.
in lightroom cc, you can apply the preset to one photo, then just hit ctrl or cmd+c to copy the setting, select all photos you want to edit, and then ctrl or cmd+shift+v to paste the edit settings (aka the preset) across all the photos at once.
to be honest, this part never gets old, watching all the photos magically turn more beautiful in just a moment. i giggle at it every time, grateful for all the hours i didn’t have to spend manually editing hundreds of photos the same way.
(bonus tip: you can send a photo directly to edit in photoshop, just right clip and send “edit to photoshop” — when you save and close out of the file, it will save right back into lightroom.)
can i layer presets and add more than one at a time?
most presets can’t be layered because the changes you’re telling the program to make would just override and compete with one another. if you absolutely must have two different presets on one photo for whatever reason, my weird hack has been to export it, send it to my phone, open it in another editing app, save it again (so it saves as a new file) and then put it back in lightroom as a new jpeg/png photo. but you’ll lose any edits you made between the jump to the new file.
(side note — you can apply as many photoshop actions as you want to a single photo! so, dust + matte + light leaks + resize, all of it. these bonus files are only included in the aesthetic collection, but totally worth it)
what is the difference between raw and jpeg?
a raw file is a high quality, unprocessed file that gives you rockstar editing results because it stores more data. a jpeg is a compressed file that has less information, which makes it easier for the photo to look all messed up if you edit it too much. most people, most of the time, shoot jpeg, and it’s totally a-okay. but if you have the choice, shoot raw.
do i need to backup my presets and actions?
i mean, yeah, you should backup like everything. but do you? honestly though, just having your files stored somewhere outside of lightroom is enough. put the download folder in a cloud based backup storage system, which you probably (should) already have, right? if you have some sort of emergency data loss or laptop crash though, just email me and we can find your receipt and send your presets over again - one less thing for you to worry about.
what happens after i purchase the preset collection?
you’ll get an email with the order confirmation and a link to download the .zip file. after you click the link, you’ll have 24 hours from that moment to download your files. if you are a hot mess and you forget, i can resend you the original download link, because i understand.
how do i open the files?
my best advice is just don’t try to use your teeth. like to open anything, ever. you’ll probably chip one, and need an emergency dentist, and — no but really, you just double click the file from your downloads folder, and it will unzip. (on windows you have to right click and select ‘extract all’) then follow the how-to for installing the version that’s best for you.
can you make custom presets? are you going to release any new collections?
yes, and yes! any aesthetic you have in mind, just shoot me an email or dm on ig, and i can work with you. i am already in the middle of designing a fall collection, and then i really want to work on a wintery set, and some other ideas i have, so hopefully i’ll have plenty more.