Every photographer knows that the creative process doesn’t end with pressing the shutter button — it marks the beginning. I've searched far and wide for the best premium preset packs for Lightroom 5, and I've definitely settled on two: Preset Shop and Siem.
Preset Shop Master Suite for Lightroom 5
The most important thing I noticed immediately with the Preset Shop bundle is how many combinations I can achieve. The Preset Shop presets provide color alterations and combinations similar to that of Hipstamatic and Instagram – but much more high quality. With 19 collections, over 300 presets, and 80 brushes, the Master Suite doesn't compare to a single other preset bundle on the market.
Putting the Master Suite to the test
One of the biggest problems I run into when shooting cityscapes is adequate color saturation and problem areas in shading. The Natural Light Collection is perfect for me addressing this editing need, as I can instantly retouch small corners and sections easily. I have to make sure lines, silhouettes and depth are as clear as seeing it in person. The City Lights, Noir, and Vintage Collections all allow me to turn my photos into high-quality snapshots in no time.
The RetroGrade Collection is my personal favorite of the bunch, featuring 65 color presets, 50 black-and-white presets, and an additional 46 presets for fade effects, film toning, grains, vignettes and softening.
Bottom line, Retrograde is the ultimate preset pack for vintage looks and subtle analogue film finishing for your photography and video editing.
How to Buy Preset Shop Plugins for Lightroom 5
The Preset Shop bundles range in prices. Head over to PresetShop.com for more information.
SEIM Power Workflow and Color Fantasies
I’m also a big fan of SEIM Effects presets for Lightroom. They are both truly brilliant products from award-winning photographer Gavin Seim. He’s included Power Workflow 4 and Color Fantasies, two inclusions that make the editing part of photography a breeze.
Power Workflow 4: Subtlety at its finest
Power Workflow has more than 75 presets, allowing me to mix and layer presets to find the perfect solution for any photo. The Magic Fixes would have to be my favorite; with a click, I can address frequent problems with shade, sunlight and even fix red faces. In addition, the Super Series X gives me the ability to tone, pump up the resolution and add subtle vignettes to give my photos amazing results. I must add that the Pushed Silver, Silver Light and Easy Silver are three go-tos that I my wife uses when working on bridesmaid pictures — She says they turn out exquisite.
Sublety is the name of the game with the Power Workflow presets. These presets aren't designed to completely change your photo like Instagram. Instead, Power Workflow 4 kicks photo editing up a notch with extremely powerful image fixes that really add a lot of dramatic edge to my photos. This is definitely a powerful addition to the Seim Effects Photo Toolbox.
SEIM Color Fantasies 2: Color blending and dramatic flair
Color Fantasies 2 is another new color blending toolkit. By taking subtleties of color and tones, photographers are able to customize their photo to ensure that the vision they want to create comes out loud and clear. All tools have been re-mastered or created so that professional photographers can mix, blend and leverage these color subtleties in their own way, creating a unique signature piece. These colors range in 5 categories, from color to cinema tones. I like using the cinema tones; the end result gives an old time feel of class without losing clarity or sharpness. It is also a nice feature to have vignettes available, as well as the ability to change exposure.
Where to find Seim Effects
Both Power WorkFlow and Color Fantasies are can be picked up from SeimEffects.com.